Duterte urges Filipinos to follow 'virtuous example' of saints

MANILA, Philippines – As the country observed All Saints' Day on Thursday, November 1, President Rodrigo Duterte called on Filipinos to follow the "virtuous example" of the saints.

"I call on the entire nation to honor those who have gone before us in the grace of God. Their legacy remains an important part of who we are today and we have much to gain from their virtuous example," he said in his message for the occasion.

"May their deeds inspire us to become advocates of peace and solidarity as we do our part in building our nation and alleviating the suffering of others," he added.

#PresidentDuterte calls on Filipinos to honor legacy of saints and their dearly departed. Read his All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day message below. @rapplerdotcom pic.twitter.com/c5DkpSRC17 — Pia Ranada (@piaranada) November 1, 2018

Duterte, who in his public speeches boasts of killing drug addicts  and human rights advocates, asked his countrymen to "emulate" the saints and honor the dead.

"Together, let us emulate our saints, pray for the eternal repose of souls and deepen our engagement with our communities as we work for real and lasting change," he said.

November 1 may be a holiday for most Filipinos but there's no such luxury for Duterte. He is expected to visit Benguet in relation to the deadly landslide in Mountain Province. He is likely to join an aerial inspection of the affected area. – Rappler.com

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.