Palace: No ill feelings toward Church

by Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 14 2012 07:54 PM | Updated as of Nov 15 2012 07:21 PM

MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino has no ill feelings towards the Catholic Church itself but only to some of its leaders and members who make criticisms without even having spoken to him, a Palace official said Wednesday.

Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda pointed out that there are Church officials who have previously talked to Aquino and have not spoken against him. He said the Palace remains open to constructive criticisms.

"Siguro 'yung ibang mga nagsasalita, pumupuna sa kanya na hindi naman po niya nakakausap ay bakit po sila puna nang puna nang hindi naman siya nakakausap. May mga nakakausap po tayong mga liderato po ng simbahan at sila naman po ay maayos nating nakakausap. 'Pag nakakausap po natin naipapaliwanag naman sa kanila at naliliwanagan sila po sa ating meeting," Lacierda said.

"We understand if tama naman po ang sinasabi nila. We take criticisms naman e. We are able to take criticisms well. Minsan lang kung saan nanggagaling itong batikos na ito parang walang basehan," he added.

Aquino on Tuesday launched a tirade against those in the Church that criticize him.

"Kung minsan naman po, kabahagi ako ng simbahan, bubukas pa lang ho ang bibig ko kini-criticize na ako," Aquino said.

"…'Pag si Brother Eddie [Villanueva] ang tumawag, sila Bishop Leo [Alconga] at saka iba pa, sila Bishop Dan [Balais, at] kung sinu-sino pang mga kaibigan natin, minsan napapag-isip ako: Bakit napakadaling kausap nitong mga kababayan nating ito? At kung minsan naman po, kabahagi ako ng simbahan, bubukas pa lang ho ang bibig ko kini-criticize na ako. So siguro sila ang magbibigay ng pagkakataong mapatunayan kung Kristiyano ako. So nakakagalak ho talagang nakikita [ko] kayong lahat dito, nakakasama sa pananampalataya, at sa pagtitiwala sa kapangyarihan ng pagdadasal," Aquino said in his speech during the opening day of the Asia for Christ Movement (AFCM) Mission Congress held at the PICC.