Catholic Church leaders in the Philippines called on the faithful to stand for truth amid the proliferation of “fake news” and lies.
The call was made during celebrations across the country of the Solemnity of the Feast of Christ the King on Sunday, November 21.
“If we believe in ‘fake news’ and if we spread it, we become instruments of lies,” said Cardinal Jose Advincula of Manila in a homily during Mass on Sunday.
“If we become instruments of lies, we stop being on the side of Jesus, we become instruments of the enemy, we become the tools of the devil,” added the cardinal.
The Manila prelate said he is worried over the proliferation of “fake news” in various social media platforms.
He noted the a lot of people believe what they see on social media without verifying the truth or fact-checking the details.
“Let us go back to the Words of Jesus, because the truth is with Jesus,” said the cardinal during Mass at the Christ the King Parish in Quezon City.
Meanwhile, Bishop Broderick Pabillo of Taytay, chairman of the Episcopal Commission on the Laity, said that a lot of people are not anymore seeking the truth.
“They do not seek, so they do not find,” said the bishop in his homily. “They do not investigate, they do not analyze,” he added.
Bishop Pabillo said not everything on social media are true and correct, adding that truth is important as basis for any decision especially related to next year’s national elections.
He supported the proposal of Cardinal Advincula for the establishment of “circles of discernment” to educate the public about issues that affect the community.
Cardinal Advincula earlier called on the faithful to form “circles of discernment” ahead of next year’s national elections “so that we can listen and follow the will of God.”
The cardinal urged the faithful to look at Christ as the center of their lives, adding that the national elections next year is an important part of the life of the community.
He reminded everyone of their responsibility as voters to elect the right leaders.
“I pray that respect for human dignity, the common good, social justice and societal charity, and preferential option for the poor will prevail in our society,” said Cardinal Advincula.