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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

On Faith and Politics

On Faith and Politics

It was Mahatma Gandhi who said that those who believe that religion and politics aren’t connected, don’t understand either. [Nancy Gibbs and Michael Duffy, The Preacher and the Presidents: Billy Graham in the White House, (New York, NY: Center Street, 2007), x.] Whereas Billy Graham “had moved in both realms, tried for decades to bring them closer together, and by doing so learned the value of keeping them apart. (Ibid) In fact, in matters of faith Graham’s certainty had never faltered but now had his doubts on matters of politics. (Ibid)

It now appears that faith in God has nothing to do with public life. By putting abyss between politics and religion, it renders our whole life shattered and tragic. So when you see the highest official of the Philippine Republic intently prays in the Cathedral on Lenten Season and in other significant event in the Church calendar, we should realize that such pious act is wholly a private matter and has nothing to do with his/her brand of governance.

You see, we are the only Christian country in the Far East and yet our brand of Christianity is not immersed in the way we run the Government. Government officials in general, claiming to be God-believing leaders and deeply religious in attending Church liturgies, are the ones leading in corrupting the political systems and in plundering the Filipino people. There lies the tragic reality. It always happens when we lose sight of God in Jesus Christ as the true framework of transformational politics.

Transformation is premised on the fact that the coming of God into one’s life impacts him/her monumentally forever. Holistic transformation is thus viewed as a process of integrating one’s faith in all aspects of life and in all days of a lifetime. A person’s transformation can be achieved with the constant reference to the Lord God. This calls for deeper living out of one’s personal spirituality in either the church or workplace in the society.

Thus, holistic transformation in the Lord God is the uncompromising foundation to any leadership pursuits in politics-ministry.

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