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No way to treat our heroesAntonio M. Reyes

What did Jose Rizal, Andres Bonifacio, Marcelo H. Del Pilar and Graciano Lopez Jaena; four men who changed the course of Philippine history have in common?

The answer is –they were all Free Masons. And so was General Emilio Aguinaldo, Gregorio Del Pilar, Emilio Jacinto and the martyred priests Gomez, Burgos and Zamora (GOMBURZA). And for our countrymen who still dream of pledging allegiance to the flag of the United States of America; so were George Washington and General Douglas MacArthur.

Since its inception in 1912 the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons in the Philippines has produced four presidents, a Prime Minister, three Chief Justices of the Supreme Court, 5 top diplomats and 6 national artists. It now has 250,000 members and 347 Lodges in the country.

Its members in Southern Leyte include the late Provincial Treasurer Leon K. Markines (whose daughter SLSU President Dr. Gloria Reyes is a member of Job’s Daughters) our current Provincial Health Officer Dr. Jose Lito Trumata and SLT Publisher Antonio M. Reyes.

Despite the sterling performance of its members in our revolutionary wars against Spain and the United States, and in governing our country, the reputation of the Grand Lodge has been tarnished by the baseless accusations of the Roman Catholic Church which has branded it as the “Synagogue of Satan.”

To highlight this point, the following is a quotation from no less that Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Emeritus Benedict XV!) on November 26, 1983 when he said:

“The faithful who enrol in Masonic Associations are in a state of grave sin and may not receive Holy Communion.” In other words, they were automatically ex-communicated, and were condemned to a life of eternal pain and misery in hell.

If this is the mind set of the Roman Catholic Hierarchy at the Vatican then our National Heroes Jose Rizal, Andres Bonifacio, Marcelo H. Del Pilar and General Emilio Aguinaldo who we will be honouring this Monday would all be watching us, not from the lofty heights of heaven, but from hell - and probably asking themselves:

“Are these the people we gave our lives for?”

Fortunately Roman Catholics now have a leader in Pope Francis who believes that all religions and brotherhood associations that believe in God, should be respected, and not condemned to eternal damnation.

We as Christians should heed his call for religious tolerance and genuine Ecumenism.

Antonio M. Reyes is the publisher and editor of the Southern Leyte Times the largest circulating newspaper & website in Southern Leyte.






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