Friday, August 20, 2010

Tagaytay Religious Association's open letter to former President Fidel V. Ramos

Here's my letter to former president Fidel V. Ramos as a public reply to his series of articles on the socio-political and environmental condition of Tagaytay City. Please click here to read online or scroll down.

On Sunday (22 August 2010), the Tagaytay Religious Association will have an assembly to discuss the matter. Blessed be the name of the Lord!
 

Tagaytay Religious Association
(Founded in 1971; in partnership with Tagaytay Ministerial Fellowship
and other Christian Churches in Tagaytay since 2010)

Office Address:
Divine Word Seminary,
SVD Road,
4120 Tagaytay City
Tel no. 046-413125
Fax no. 046-4131251


August 20, 2010

Dear Former President Fidel V. Ramos,

Shalom!

When I read your and Miss Jullie Yap Daza’s articles on Tagaytay City in the Manila Bulletin, I blessed the Lord for, at last, the socio-political and environmental condition of our city was brought into public eye—by no less than two respected figures of our country—a former president, one of the best we ever had; and a well-known journalist and award-winning television talk show host.

Tagaytay indeed is an “incomparable God-given asset” as you said. Even more so because, in this small city, it is home to a hundred religious houses (Catholic) and Christian churches. If it is not for our conscience and Christian calling, we can choose to live comfortably inside the walls of our convents and churches and just close our eyes to what we ourselves also witness as “Tagaytay’s deterioration” and numb our ears to the silent cries and hushed laments of the people around us. But we cannot. The proclamation of the Word of God to which we committed ourselves includes, to quote a document of the Society of the Divine Word (SVD), “the condemnation of injustice and of those elements in a society which are against the will of God."

“What are you, religious and Christian churches, doing in Tagaytay?” This is the kind of question that we usually receive from visitors who frequent Tagaytay and observe its “deterioration.” A month before the last elections, the Tagaytay Religious Association (TRA) consisting of 70 Catholic religious houses and the Tagaytay Ministerial Fellowship (TMF) with 26 Christian churches had worked together to host a candidates forum aimed to discuss in a civilized way the condition of our city [www.tagaytayforum.blogspot.com]. The incumbent mayor who was then running for re-election chose to absent himself from the forum and, in a letter he distributed to each religious house, accused me, its head organizer, of being “an ardent supporter and campaigner of the Opposition in Tagaytay City as early as 2004 [sic] and a constant detractor of the Tolentino Administration even in his church homilies” (please see the attached file for a copy of his letter).

“Sustainable development and continuous good governance,” as you wrote, “are the responsibility of government.” But you have also pointed out that “the leaders of the business sector, the religious, academics, and the marginalized should be encouraged/included as stakeholders in actualizing above goals without fear of being branded as ‘enemies’”. It is so encouraging to ‘hear’ from you that “whenever there are differences in opinion—if people’s interests are met—ordinary Filipinos should speak out freely in the spirit of community-building without fear of reprisals” [emphases mine]

Thank you, FVR!

Sincerely,

Fr. Randolf C. Flores, SVD
President of the Tagaytay Religious Association (TRA)
Divine Word Seminary, 4120 Tagaytay City
E-mail address: rrandy33@yahoo.com

Blogs:
Divine Word Seminary - www.divineworseminary.blogspot.com
Tagaytay Candidates Forum www.tagaytayforum.blogspot.com

Attached files:
List of members of Tagaytay Religious Association and Tagaytay Ministerial Fellowship
Letter of Mayor Abraham Tolentino

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