March 23, 1970 Monday

MALACAÑAN PALACE
Manila

11:35 AM

March 23, 1970
Monday

Free Time to 12:00 AM. Father Cruz, our retreat master, says our Christian commitment is to humanize our society. I have been saying this for a long time.

It is both a Christian ideal and a pragmatic requirement of peace and development. For if society is not humanized, we fail to do what is right and worse, we lay the groundwork for the leftist radicals whose siren song will be the total incapability of the democratic society to help the brutalized underprivileged and the need for another ideology.

But to do so requires management, more funds and currency stability as well as the harnessing of both private and public initiatives and resources.

The “Tulungan” project in Tondo is an example. We will create new factories, give away the land to those who are hungry for land, build socialized housing, set up agro-industrial settlements, the green revolution, etc. But we need active executives and funds.

I must now certify the bill on compulsary forced savings of ten percent of declared income which shall be invested in government bonds. Declared income is estimated at P2.7 billion so that this would mean forced savings of P270 million. The businessmen thru Piding Montelibano is willing to increase the rate to raise a total of
P800 million from both the 10% export tax and the forced savings.

The Congress (actually only the Senate as the House has approved both the Export Tax and Price Control Bills) has agreed upon my instance to meet on Holy Week (Monday to Wednesday) for the first time in history. They have consumed 48 days of their 100 days session and have passed only five bills on second reading.

4:00 PM

“Filters” and a corner of one’s self that is not “slave to your appetites” or subject to pressures and where one is moved for goodness only for goodness sake – not because of any reward or consideration

The Lord supports you – be not afraid. This is the idea of telling the leader – go and expose yourself to the anger of the mob. Here I touch you and make you strong – go and do good. Bring my message and you shall succeed.

The “filters” the good father speaks of are experiences that determine the manner with which one looks at things. One should not allow them to govern one’s decisions.

“He who does not have the habit of reflection surrenders himself to panic” from the French philosopher.

This is plain objectivity, scholarliness and freedom from passion and bias.

So God invites us to help him tend his flock. What shall be our response.

Have hope. There is a natural goodness in everyone that will conquer evil. So how shall we respond to the invitation of God.

85% of our people quietly works for our progress. The quiet anonymous government employee who spent what he called an overpayment to him, in seeds which he taught the underprivileged of Sapang Palay to plant and tend; the young men who have started small garlic farms and exported them; I can add those who are helping themselves by building irrigation dams on their own free labor – these are our people who believe in our democratic wav of life. But these 85% are now in a state of tension. So they seek guidance. And we must give it to them. For by creating new jobs, by increasing the income of the poor, by furnishing the social services, we remove the people from evil. Thus we do God’s bidding. Thus we fulfill our Christian commitment in our society that is under tension.

The forces of the leftist radicals are equally dedicated. One Huk before he died said the principles of love for the poor and justice are but doctrines to you (talking to Father Cruz), to us they are our life.

So our task needs the same courage that was needed in Bataan.

The lecture of Father Cruz was so inspiring and timely that we invited the girls to come tomorrow to hear him but they have their own retreat under Fathers Tanseco and Nebrida. So we are tape recording our respective lectures instead for replay later on.

Father Unson’s opening lecture was how to approach a retreat which is nothing but a new experience of God. I myself feel it is a renewal of my conversations with my Maker. He (Father Unson) sets three basic prerequisites. They are:

N- earness – to God
0-peness – to any message he may send
W-onder at the pleasant result

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