Rector calls for peace amid “darkness looming” over the country

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UST RECTOR Fr. Herminio Dagohoy, O.P. called for peace this Christmas season amid the “darkness looming” over the country in his homily during the Eucharistic celebration for the Paskuhan festivities last Dec. 15.

“We all know that in the midst of darkness, we needed the light and when the world was in darkness, God became man. The central message of the Christmas story is the message of peace,” Dagohoy said.

The Rector urged the Thomasian community to celebrate the yuletide with a sense of peace and solidarity with others.

“My dear Thomasians, as we celebrate Christmas with our friends and loved ones, I hope you share the sense of peace–peace that can only be with us if we learn to share the sorrows, the sense of loss and anguish of the victims of violence. Peace that can only be with us if in our quest for truth we learn to listen to other voices, even if these voices are different from ours,” he said.

Dagohoy slammed the continuous rise in alleged extrajudicial killings in relation to the war against illegal drugs by the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, and moves to restore death penalty in the country.

“Darkness looms when we allow [a] person to die [who was] destroyed by drugs, when we fail to hear the cries of widows and children. Darkness looms when we fail to fix our criminal justice system, and instead take the easier route to punish the law offenders, depriving them the opportunity to reform their lives and extinguish from them the sense of hope,” he added.

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He warned that darkness would continue if “we fail to tell the stories of the lives of those who fought for freedom, the atrocities of martial rule, and allow the facts of history [to be] replaced [by] the imagined benevolence and illusions of power.”

The Paskuhan festivities will be held for two days this year, with the Mass and Agape on the first day, followed by the concert on the second day at the Quadricentennial Pavilion.

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