STATEMENT OF THE CLERGY, RELIGIOUS MEN AND WOMEN OF THE DIOCESE OF CUBAO ON THE MURDER OF REV. FR. RICHMOND V. NILO

My dear People of God,

 

The Roman Catholic Bishop of Cubao, together with all the clergy, religious men and women, strongly condemn  the killing of Rev. Fr. Richmond V. Nilo, a diocesan priest of the Diocese of Cabanatuan.

 

Still reeling from shock and grief over the murder of two priests recently, we no again mourn another brutal killing—that our brother, Fr. Nilo, just as he was about to celebrate Sunday Mass in Brgy. Mayamot, Zaragoza, Nueva Ecija. Fr. Nilo was relentless in his mission to proclaim the Word of God. He died while fulfilling his ministry. But his death would not be in vain as the Church will continue to proclaim the Gospel amidst persecution and violent attacks. We condemn these acts of violence. They can never silence our faith.

 

We implore the authorities to do everything in their capacity to bring justice  to the victim and not to treat his case merely as one among the isolated cases of killings.

 

The people of God have been bleeding profusely from series of killings happening in our country. Such impunity has brought discord and so much pain to Filipinos, leaving many of our countrymen—orphans, fatherless, motherless, "shepherd-less." Let us not get used to this. Let us not become desensitized and apathetic. Let us not stop making noise until our cry for justice and truth is heard. Let the KILLINGS STOP!

 

In solidarity with the Diocese of Cabanatuan, I once again ask all parishes in our Diocese to toll the bells of all Churches every 8pm for fifteen minutes starting Friday, June 15, 2018 (Fr. Richmond Nilo's funeral) until June 29, 2018, the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul. As we celebrate their martyrdom, may the sound of the Church bells awake our faith and remind us of the sanctity of life. I also ask all parishes to expose the Blessed Sacrament for a Holy Hour on Thursday, June 28, 2018, after the Evening Mass. We enjoin all the lay faithful to pray for all priests that we always be courageous and steadfast in the face of adversities.

 

I ask all the faithful to light a candle outside their gates on June 29, 2018 at 8pm and say one Our Father, one Hail Mary, and one Glory Be as we pray for the repose of the souls of all the slain priests and lay people who are crying out for justice.

 

May Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, our Mother shield our country from further bloodshed, violence and wanton cruelty.

 

 

Sincerely yours in Christ,

(SGD) Most. Rev. HONESTO F. ONGTIOCO, DD

Bishop of Cubao