Ramento’s wake

Last night I went to the wake for bishop Alberto Ramento at the National Cathedral of the Philippine Independent Church. He was a friend of over thirty years standing of my parents, first of my father who maintained a close and admiring relationship with the PIC from the early 70s until the time of his death; and my mother, who considered him a just and truly Christian man. Bishop Ramento was one of the few individuals from outside the family invited to attend my parent’s wedding and my father considered him one of the most intellectually-inclined among his PIC friends: the frustration he felt with much of the Catholic clergy was compensated for, I think, by the openness of his PIC friends to ecumenism and because of their thorough nationalism.

Talking to bishop Ramento’s widow and then, while having a much lengthier talk with one of his sons, I couldn’t help but think about the contrast between Ramento’s life -approachable to all, accommodating of all classes, but dedicated to the poor and lived according to complete simplicity- with its death threats and spartan circumstances, and that of so many of his Roman Catholic peers.

Achieving Happiness was apparently also at the wake for bishop Ramento at the time I went, and she describes perfectly what the BAYAN tribute was like:

Attended the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan’s (BAYAN) tribute to IFI Maximo Obispo Alberto Ramento. It was a beautiful, heartfelt and rousing tribute. Bishop Ramento’s legacy will live on, and the lessons of his life will continue to inspire countless progressive church people, religious, professionals, youth and students in their Lead222 efforts to serve the interest of the basic masses of workers and peasants.

When Bayan’s Rita Baua asked the audience to stand up and applaud the memory of Bishop Ramento, everyone clapped until their palms began to hurt, and it felt and sounded like people would’ve wanted to continue clapping long after the one minute was up.

We clapped for Bishop Ramento, his life and his sacrifice; and we also clapped in tribute to the lives of those who fell before him, felled by bullets of killers sent by a killer government.

My mother and I clapped, too.

The significance of bishop Ramento’s life and death have been pointed out in tributes and editorials. His death marks an escalation in the confrontation between the forces of reaction and everyone else. From what I heard from his family, the bishop was not accidentally killed in a robbery. He was assassinated -the fatal blow most likely inflicted with a bayonet.

Anti-terror bill gets nudged forward by bombings in Mindanao (see Madame Chiang’s note on the double-counting of fatalities, though). 17 to be charged for nursing exam leak. Former UP President Nemenzo to be charged in connection with Magdalo.

The papers have competing stories about the petitions submitted to the Supreme Court to prove -or disprove- the existence of a genuine people’s initiative. Malaya the Bulletin, the Star, the Daily Tribune and the Business Mirror all focus on different facets of the case.

On a side note, government gives up on those automated machines (for now?) Ballots by mail for Filipino-Americans (why not all OFW’s?).

In the punditocracy, my column for today is A matter of logistics and makes reference, of course, to this and this comment by hvrds and the photos in this Flickr album.

The Inquirer has published a series of editorials on the Comelec computerization case: Blind, Deaf, and Dumb, the editorials said of the Ombudsman, and most recently, by suggesting The Court did it (that is, a crime with no criminals became so because of the Supreme Court), the Ombudsman’s report makes no sense.

Tony Abaya on Kim Jong-Il and Jose Ma. Sison.

John Mangun says take a second look at the stock market. Akio Mikuni says Japan should focus on its housing market now that the US housing bubble’s about to burst. On a related note, Newsbreak on a hotel room-building boom in Cebu.

In the blogosphere,

Political Pinoy links to a cussing match between a call center operator and a client. Nagsusulat Lamang pens an open letter to nurses. And caffeine sparks pens something I totally agree with: the personal is political, and that defeatism is the majority consensus:

And so if the elite do not care, and the masses don’t either, then who are we left with? Those who are able to mount a formidable election machine to gain public office and then, like rabid vampires, cannibalize precious little State resources. And those who are so wretchedly poor and uneducated that they willingly cash in on such election machines in exchange for their democratic power to scribble names on a piece of paper. In the mean time, those of us in the middle dwindle in numbers as we all plot to jump ship, if not now then in the near future.,,

I tell my Intramuros students, you want to fly away to some far corner of the globe? You think to escape your roots? I think not. You may not physically be here but you will leave family behind. You will remit billions of dollars a year, and as economic conditions worsen, you will remit even more. Even then your country bleeds you. You will keep this Republic afloat and you will unwittingly keep the very Government you fled, that amoral monster of a cannibal, alive and well and fed. I say kill it. And if you want to slay it, then you stay.

The Middle East, Arab culture and the peace divide has My Liberal Times writing on liberal Arabs and Epilogos reproducing an article on whether Muslims who riot really know what they’re all excited about.

Haze from Indonesia spills over to Malaysia and Singapore: Present Point Power has photos. Screenshots has the latest in the Bumiputra affirmative action debate roiling Malaysia. Also, media interference there irks, well, media people.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Manuel L. Quezon III.

14 thoughts on “Ramento’s wake

  1. Bishop Ramento’s lamentable death also has brought out something good. The Independent Church has received the attention it deserves from the press, nation and ruling elite. The Nationalist Church has long been ignored by the ruling elite. I don’t know if Gloria Arroyo herself has visited Cathedral on Taft Avenue. But the President and other politicians have met with CBCP and INC clerics. Also the PIC centennial was hardly ever noticed by the press. The saving grace was that NBN 4 televised the PIC Mass at 2:00 AM.

    One op-ed columnist wrote that the PIC is no pushover. Well the PIC will always side with the poor and no doubt it will have more martyrs. What is chilling about the Ramento murder is that heads of churches are now targets. This has got the CBCP worried too.

  2. blackshama, true, i remember the cathedral on taft avenue well, i’d go there with my dad when he’d pay visits to some of the previous obispos maximo.

  3. I think we can say with much confidence that the legacy of bishop Ramento will be carried on by his fellow priests of the PIC. To give just one example of such courageous cleric, I would like to mention padre Terry Revollido of Urdaneta, Pangasinan, who has been likewise steadily standing by the persecuted activists regardless of the fact he himself might very well be targeted one day. There is definitely something to be said for the ethos pervading the PIC.

  4. I don’ know Bishop Ramento personally save for what I’ve read about him. There are no words to describe how angry I feel that a man of the church should die in such abominable way.

    What prompted these evil men to murder a bishop of the PIC?

    Robbery to buy illegal drugs? Perhaps, so! What has happened to this nation that there should no longer be any respect for one whose calling is to serve God and country?

    Could it be his outspoken criticisms of Gloria’s government? If so, then the nation has sunk lower and has reached the bottomless pit of immorality.

    Who is at the helm of this nation?

    Someone whose been chided not only by Filipinos but also by foreign leaders abroad because her government has a record of more than 700 extra judicial killings of human rights activists, outspoken journalists, and to that has just been added the cold blooded murder of a man of the church.

  5. “If a person paid by the State is part of an independent private political action committee. That is a big no-no.

    “How could they blatantly lie in everyone’s face.”

    How, indeed? Because — as the old joke goes — they can.


  6. Many of us migrant workers had the privilege of meeting Bishop Ramento. We got to meet him and were themselves humbled by his own humility and graciousness. He was very simple and would talk to anyone – something many of us don’t get to do.

    MLQIII’s blog entry provides us a glimpse of how the bishop was when he was still living – a man of faith, of the church and of the people.

    If likened to Jesus, he was persecuted for his own beliefs and actions, only this time it was covered up in a “closed case of robbery with homicide”.

    Gloria revels in dissenters’ snuffed lives.

  7. I don’t know Bishop Ramento but I admire anyone who make it his calling to serve fellow filipinos. May he now rest in peace.

    I am disgusted that some posters in this forum willingly sensationalize Bishop Ramento’s passing to promote their own causes.

  8. “I am disgusted that some posters in this forum willingly sensationalize Bishop Ramento’s passing to promote their own causes.”

    cabagis, I went over to the posts which came before yours trying to find out who’s sensationalizing and what profitable cause be worth promoting, and I don’t see one. Maybe you should help me, para naman hindi nalalahat, para fair.

  9. you bet, sadly his death is being sensationalized – and by whom? it’s the same ol commies & radicals.
    the level of desperation & exploitation is always getting crazier.

  10. It pains me to post on someone’s death, but that is what we must do. Over here, we pay respect to the dead, and count him in as one with God.
    The Bishop’s death is unnatural….and came after he attacked the illegal, bogus and fake leader who leads the Country into perdition. What else will ordinary people like me think, except that he is among those who met their end becoz they have been vocal about their stand against this regime.

    While we pray for the repose of the Good Bishop’s soul, let us not waver, nor be afraid….for the end is near for those who have trampled upon the rights of millions of Filipinos and deprive them of a just and free society.

  11. it seems telling the truth now is sensationalizing to some ie? well, were in an abnormal situation right now.. people would brand you as bunch of “commies”and “radicals” if you say “uncoventional stuff” well i bet that these people branded the good bishop as part of the “bunch of commies and radicals” when he was still alive.. in case you guys doesnt know… bishop ramento is an ACTIVIST BISHOP…marching with the people..breaking brad with them..spreading the good news and the relevance of the theology of love. now if that is sensational to you, you are mistaken obispo is way beyond sensational..his story, the songs of his life, like the martyrs and heroes of the struggle the ones uve been calling minutely as commies and radicals.. will be sang by many for many years to come..they will not be sensational.. as they will be flames eternal… a bit o a challenge… try to integrate with the poor.. ull be learning a lot..

    kindly visit arkibong bayan for pictures andd a documentary with regards to the life and death of obispo

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.