Sunday, March 11, 2007

A Month of Prayer and Peace for the Filipino Family

In Celebration of National Women’s Month

AS the country celebrates National Women’s Month this March 2007, we are reminded to pray for all women who have been, and are, victims of all kinds of abuse and violence within the family and outside their homes.

The world had just celebrated the International Day for Women last March 8, calling our attention to the plight of women all over the world. Here in our own country, we celebrate National Women’s Day on March 16; it is a day to remember our Filipino women, especially those who nurtured us since we were born—our very own mothers.

We are aware that many of our women have become victims of violence, especially in their own homes. It is a sad reality that is happening in our country. The home is supposed to be a sanctuary where peace and love reign, but many of our homes now are becoming a venue where women are battered and abused.

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines exhorts the various sectors of our society to link hands to protect our women from exploitation of all kinds, from violence that reduce them to silence, and from abuse that deprive them of their dignity as persons. Many of those who have fallen victims remained silent and unable to move ahead because of fear and hurts, while just as many are slowly finding the courage to go on living their lives. We call o our brothers and sisters both in government and the private sector to lend help and services to our women in crises.

May we indeed make this month dedicated to women a month of prayer. As we pray for our Filipino women, we also pray that peace may reign in the Filipino family. Let us pray that our women get the respect and love they deserve. Let us pray that exploitation and violence against women stop. Let us pray that those victimized by violence may find the courage to forgive and get on with their lives. Let us also pray for the enlightenment and conversion of those who inflict violence on women.

Let us also recommend our Filipino women to the protection and intercession of Our Blessed Mother Mary, the model and icon of womanhood.

Archbishop of Jaro
President, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines
March 11, 2007

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