MANILA, Philippines – After calling on Filipinos to "emulate" the saints, President Rodrigo Duterte questioned the Catholic's commemoration of All Saints' Day and called saints "gago (fools)" and "lasenggo" (drunkards).
He said this on the evening of All Saints' Day on Thursday, November 1, while in Cauayan, Isabela.
"Bakit naman, sa bagay ito, tarantado talaga itong mga Katoliko, puta. Bakit may All Souls' Day tapos may All Saints' Day. Hindi nga natin alam 'yung mga santo, na kung sino mga gago na 'yun, mga lasenggo," he said as he was wrapping up the situation briefing on the impact of Typhoon Rosita in Isabela.
(The Catholics are crazy. Why is there All Souls' Day then All Saints' Day. We don't even know those saints, who those fools are, those drunkards.)
He then joked that Filipinos should just commemorate and honor one "patron" saint for the sake of convenience.
"Dito na lang kayo, I'll give you one patron para hindi na kayo magpasyal. Get hold of a picture of mine. 'Yan ang ilagay niyo sa altar: Santo Rodrigo," he said, eliciting hearty laughter from his audience of Cabinet members, local government officials, and disaster management officials.
(Just opt for his this, I'll give you one patron [saint] so you don't need to go out. Get hold of a picture of mine. Put it in the altar: Santo Rodrigo.)
Just hours before, Malacañang released Duterte's official All Saints' Day message where he asked Filipinos to emulate the "virtuous example" of saints and the dearly departed.
"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," read his message.
After visiting Northern Luzon, Duterte flew back to Davao City where he offered a prayer before the grave of his parents Soledad Roa Duterte and Vicente Duterte. – Rappler.com
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.