Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Questions for Reaction Paper on GRP-MILF Forum

The UP Forum on the GRP-MILF MOA on Ancestral Domain, held at the UP Hotel on August 20, 2008, raised very important issues, among which are the following that require your reaction:

  1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
  2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
  3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
  4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
  5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?

35 comments:

Balagun said...

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these

Balikatan is the codename of the joint military training between the Philippines and the United States. Ang aking tanong bakit sa Mindanao pa? marami namang ibang lugar na pwede nilang guluhin. According to Bai Ali Indayla, national secretary-general of Suara Bangsamoro, “US troops are not here just for military deployment and permanent basing, but are preparing for another war – war to amass all resources in our rich land. That is their long-standing hidden agenda,” Ako man ay naniniwala sa kanyang tinuran. At ang sa aking pananaw nakadagdag lang sila(US troops) ng kaguluhan sa Mindanao.

http://zamboangajournal.blogspot.com/2008/02/moro-group-lauds-armm-assembly-for.html

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?

Ang iglesiya ay makatutulong sa usapin na iyan. Ngunit ang tagapangasiwa ng iglesiya ay kinakailangang may damdaming bayan at paalabin ang pag-ibig para sa kapwa. Pero mas maganda rin lalo kapag pinagbigyan ng pamahalaan ang gusto ng mga muslim at lumad na ibigay sa kanila ang matagal na nilang minimithi. Sa ngayon ang magagawa lang ng iglesiya ay samahan ang mga taong ito sa kanilang ipinaglalaban at kahit papaano ay maging magaan para sa kanila ang kabigatang ito.

3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?

Una, ang kaligtasan ng mga taong nadadamay sa kaguluhang nangyayari. Sana naman kung maggigyera ay huwag mandamay ng mga walang laban. Ang ipinaglalaban ng mga taong nagkakagulo ay kung paano sila magkakaroon ng magandang pamumuhay, iyon naman talaga ang dahilan ng lahat. Sa kanila ang lupa ngunit pinalalayas sila sa sariling pamamahay. Pero kung maaari lamang ay wala nang maloko ang pamahalaang ito kasi nga hindi sila marunong tumupad sa usapan kaya may kaguluhang nangyayari. Pangalawa; Ang baguhin ang pamunuan tungo sa isang makataong pamamahala. Ang kilalanin ang pangangailangan ng bawat isa. Pangatlo

Nixon Sarmiento said...

Reaction Paper on the UP Forum on the GRP-MILF MOA on Ancestral Domain, held at the UP Hotel on August 20, 2008,

Question #1

The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?


Answer:

The plan to continually deploy large numbers of US troops actually, for basing in the Philippines and the outright, direct US intervention in the internal affairs of the country, is the real reason behind Balikatan or the so called visiting forces agreement. This is also what i see is the reason why US act as the third party facilitator to the GRP-MILF peace talks through USIP.
All of these acts and expediting is to make sure US interests like plans of setting up permanent bases in Mindanao and the possible tapping of an alleged 1.9 billion barrels of oil in the areas covered by ancestral domain pact would be entertained and incidentally to open its vast resources to exploitation by various business groups including, and most especially, US multinationals once the Bangsamoro homeland is established.


Question #2

Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich. What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?


Answer:

As Rev. Joel Tendero have said in his sermon at the Salakot chapel that "Our theology should not be lifted above to the state of the people". this is the state of time that we are in. In Ilagan and Zamboanga The church bells rang all over Zamboanga and almost all establishments were closed during the rally against the MOA agreement signifying unity among Christians and Moslems. this is the essence of our ministry to immerse with the people and together with them seek for answers and solutions that can cater the authenticity of peace and the totality of well being of a person is what the church should do that makes our ministry significant


Question #3

What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?



Answer

All of these will boil down to the significant words for me

a. 1 Peace is negotiable for the Bangsa Moro themselves. The problem is not violence, violence is just the cost effect of the main problem. It is their love of their ancestral domain that keeps them in defending and fighting for what is right and due to for them.

a. 2 Liberty- In effect all the negotiation for peace is some what like just to have a direct or even an indirect control of the Land in Mindanao. Although the USIP claims to be a non partisan organization; they are funded by United State Congress so tanga nalang at engot nalang talaga ang Pilipino pag naniwala silang walang control ang Amerika dito sa USIP. In light of these let the moro people have sovereign control of their ancestral domain and let the Americans and the other multinational companies unoccupied their land and let them be freed for themselves to actually deal with their own matters.


a. 3 Respect and Personal interest. There will be no genuine peace or shalom if there is no authentic motives and respect for people’s right. The moro people will not welcome consolation prize as Trojan horse masquerading in the image of peace process that in the latter end will brought more sufferings oppression to their people.


Question #3
How do you make sense of this conflict—kapatid laban sa kapatid—in the light of our discussions about solidarity, inter-connectedness (patid ng bituka), and loob?


Answer
Its not good to hear that it is happening but it’s the sad reality. Filipinos vs. Filipinos. But what is more heart brokening is that in the end we are all loosers while others are getting away enjoying the Land that we are fighting.
To be Kapatid ng bituka is to be compassionate, to empathize. In the midst of differences in beliefs and traditions we seek to understand and respect. We should not hate our kapatid instead we take care of their well being. When they are hurt (assuming that we are not the one who hurts them), we are not celebrating instead we are disturb for them, because what they feel, we also feel and we will not sleep or take a rest until our kapatid is finally relieve.


NIXON SARMIENTO
M-DIV SENIOR

jonathan e. gabuay said...

Jonathan E. Gabuay
BRE-Music V


1. Siguro nga katulad ng Iraq, ganun din ang nangyayari sa ating bansa lalo na sa Mindanao. Alam nating lahat kung ano mayroon ang islang ito. Mayaman sa pinagkukunan ng pangunahing pangangailangan ng tao galing sa lupa, dagat, at iba pa. Mataba ang lupa ng Mindanao at minsan lang tamaan ng kalamidad gaya ng bagyo. Para sa akin sa isang banda, hindi lang pagtatayo ng mga base militar ang kanilang ipinagparito dahil may sinasabing ang lupa ng Mindanao ay may nakatagong kayamanan katulad ng langis. baka yun ang nais ni george Bush, kasi nga nag-iipon siya para sa nalalapit niyang Giyera kung yun ay papalarin siya. Ang kayamanan ng Mindanao ay hindi basta-basta, ito ay malaking ambag para sa U.S. kung makukuha nila ito. iyon ay ang aking pananaw lamang.

2. Sabi pa nga, kapag nakita mo ang isang tanawin, ito ay nagdadala ng pangako, pangakong ating susundan. Katulad ng mga Muslim at lumad sa Mindanao, nakikita nila ang isang magandang hinaharap ng lupa. Katulad nga ng nabanggit ko, mataba ang kanilang lupa, sagana ito para sa kanilang kinabukasan, para sa mga anak ng kanilang salin-lahi. Kung ito man ang ipinaglalaban marapat lamang na kanila itong makamtan. Ang iglesiya, lalo na ng mga Kristiyano, hindi madali ang gawain para sa kapakanan ng mga muslim, una, nandiyan ang pagkakahati dahil sa relihiyon. Bagama't ganoon ang sitwasyon, ang pagiging magkapatid bilang mga pilipino ay isang napakalakas na pwersa upang magkaisa ang muslim at kristiyano. Ang iglesiyang kristiyano ay sinugo ni kristo upang magdala ng balita ng pagliligtas, pagtulong sa kapwa, pagmamalasakit para sa mga nagdarahop at inaapi. Ang mga Lumad at muslim ay kapwa nating pilipino. Ano ang magagawa ng Iglesiya? gawin kung ano ang tama para sa mga kapatid na muslim, samahan sa kanilang ipinaglalaban upang ng sa gayon maging ganap sa buhay ng isang iglesiya ang sinasabi ni Kristo; mahalin ang kapwa katulad ng pagmamahal sa sarili.

Kamang Gangmei Jaojian said...

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
The US has been involved in almost all the issues and wars over the world. US defense policy has been back-up by huge amount of dollars sometime greater than entire budget of many developing countries. For some reasons, American has been reluctant to leave Philippines completely. I don’t have clear knowledge whether it is the Philippines Government or the US Government who wants to remain in such ambiguous state. No doubt, US wants to have control over the world. They try to put their base in all strategic points where in any eventuality can have advantage of the situation. Recently one prominent Senator questioned the involvement of the US in GRP-MILF MOA. It is little bit confusing altogether. Who invited US? GRP? Or MILF? Or is it the US usual way of involving in all issues and wars. According to Atty. Musib Baut, MILF has nothing to do with US. Therefore, if his answer is honest, it is either GRP or US themselves. Aside from Philippines being a strategic point for trade and commerce in Asia and needless to say a perfect point for military base for engaging war with the big super power Asian countries such as China, Japan and India! As Ms Amirah, National President SUARA Bangsamoro presented about the richness of natural resources in the Mindanao region, it is likely that US wants to take part in plundering the wealth of the Mindanao. According to her, some multinational corporations; mostly from the west, wants to explore and exploit the rich natural resources which are rightfully belongs to the people of the Mindanao. There are political and economical implications behind the US involvement.

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, what do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
There seems to be problem with the word “The Land of Promise”. As a Christian, we were taught from our Sunday school that Israelites were going to “the land of promise”. While somehow, they could displaced some of the original inhabitants saying it is “promise land” by God. However, till today they are fighting for this “promise land”. Now, I am not questioning the promise of God but God has His own time and sometime our finite mind can not understand His infinite meaning of “promise land”. Shifting our attention to the Moslems and Lumads of Mindanao, promises made by Government or individual, the probability of happening is very low. Freedom at the cost of other is not a real freedom but it is domination. The churches have to stand in solidarity with the landless and those are being oppressed. The Churches has a greater challenge than before. We claim ourselves to proclaim a message of truth to others must live and exercise that truth in spirit and in action. The churches are challenged to shed light to the dark injustices and oppression. Moral lesson is best taught when everyone have food to eat and place to live.

3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
The first concern that challenged me at the forum was the word “sovereignty”. From the sharing of Atty. Musib Baut, it seems to imply that Mindanao want to be separated from the Philippines. MILF stands for the separate Bangsamoro land. My concern here is how Philippines will deal with such demand. They have been struggling for such separate land for long long time and Philippines will not easily give up part of her. It makes me also to think whether people wants to live as separate land or asking foreigners and rich to “stop from plundering and oppression” as Ms Amirah lamented. Knowing the verdicts of the mass is crucial in solving this problem. If people determine to live as separate land, nothing can stop them; it will surface from generation to generation.
Another concern is the common goal of various rebel groups operating in the region. I am told by my Filipinos friends that there are several rebel groups operating in the regions. As I am also coming from a similar political situation, where various rebels groups can not compromise with other rebels groups’ goal and aspiration. Though all of them claim to fight against the government, yet there are differences where it seems impossible to come together under one banner. I have the same concern for the rebel groups in the Mindanao. Dialogues and honest communication is the only solution for them various groups to come together. One has to think of other as an equal compatriot.
Another concern is the leadership issue. We have witness even from the recent history that there are civil wars and bloodshed in the newly formed nations. Most of the new independent nations in Africa are facing this reality. While the issue is related to various rebel groups again. Now, MILF had a talked with the GRP, what about the rest of groups? Since MILF is the first to engage in dialogue with GRP, will they also take the leading role in building Mindanao? Are the other rebels groups willing to submit to the command of MILF? Equal attention to all rebel groups stand a great challenge for the GRP.

4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
After 7/11 incident, US has been looking every knocks and corners to find those responsible for the bombing of the Twine Tower and the Pentagon. While for many, it was horrible act of terrorism but some did not think it was horrible rather heroic act for the atrocities US has committed upon million innocents. The problems start when one is greedy and meddle with other affairs. The situation in the Mindanao got worst as ‘Al-Qaeda’ activities was traced to Moslems rebels in the region. It was like ‘scratching in the right spot’. US took advantage of the link probably more than what they could get. For MILF and other rebel groups, they are, with all their honesty and sincerity want freedom of Bangsamoro and they will engage in everything which deem necessary. As US have been actively engage in the Asian political issues, the situation in Mindanao provide a perfect platform to continue their ‘power itchy’ policy. Every activities of the rebel groups in the region are define as an act of terrorism. The problem will persist as long as acceptable solution is presented on the table.

5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
We as a Christian should stand for peace and justice. While attempting to bring peace and justice, we are to engage in bringing mutual understanding between the conflicting parties. When our brethren is displaced and deprived of their land and fruits thereof, we are called to face the challenge of voicing out what is right and good for the people. Anything that is dehumanizing should be should be reproof.

Nixon Sarmiento said...

Paano....

lakas ng "loob"...paano natin malalaman kung paano maging tunay na kapatid kung natatakot tayong magsaksipisyo para sa iba..paano nila malalaman ang ang pagibig ng Dios kung walang magtatapat sa kanila..di kaylangan magkapantay pantay, ang kailangan lang ay makita ang pagmamalasakit sa isang kapatid ng bituka..ngunit kung sa halip na maging totoo ay naglalamangan maging sa kasuduang nais pag tibayin ay namamayani ang pansariling interest..wala tayong LOOB na ipagmamalaki.


PAANO KA NAMIN SASAMBAHIN OH DIOS KUNG HINDI "BUO" ANG AMING "LOOB"

Nixon Sarmiento said...

Final Continuation Of The Reaction Paper on GRP-MILF forum


Question #4

What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?


Answer

This is perhaps the biggest misconception about the word terrorist, given the constant stereotyping, bashing and labeling by the media and the power holders in . The question that should come to mind is: Who is the real terrorist, is it the powerful or the weak or is it the oppressor or the oppress? And what is the root of terrorism?
In the context of our fellow Filipinos in Mindanao and in the international community, throughout history, we have seen many examples of two opposing sides where one man’s freedom fighter is another man’s terrorist. We have seen this when India achieved independence from British rule. Some freedom fighters of India, who did not subscribe to non-violence, were labeled as terrorists by the British government. The same individuals have been praised by Indians for the same activities and hailed as patriots. Some current conflicts involving Moro people in Mindanao also fall into this category.

How can Bangsamoro people condone terrorism when the word “Islam” itself is derived from the word “salaam”, which means achieving peace through submission to God? It is a religion of peace, whose fundamentals teach its followers to maintain and promote peace throughout the world.


Question #5

How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?


Answer:

Whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. —Matthew 7:12

The golden rule, Jesus gave His disciples. This text is fit to what is happening in Mindanao and personally providing that the GRP and we Christians are not giving the Bangsamoro people what is worth for them.
The course of discussion will be the picture of putting your feet on someone’s shoes.. Using our imagination and finding ourselves in the situation of the Bangsamoro people in Mindanao where we are colonized by multinational company businessmen. Our Land has been taken away from us, our fellowmen were dying because of war and poverty, What will be the primary thing that we want to happen? Then I will invite sharing of comments and experiences related to the text and to state of Mindanao people with the Aim to open the awareness of the church people I’m leading, in responding to the real call of faith to Love and have Compassion for the people whose only hope is God

Emilio "Jon" Manaois said...

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?

The United States has always been part in issues of internal and external conflicts in countries. Its government claims that they have significant role in attaining a more peaceful life of humanity – that they protect the well being of the world. Whether this is true or not, its intervention in conflicts especially in the subject of clash in Mindanao is big foul. It is because the Philippines is a state having its sovereignty. If there can be problem in our country, the people who will take part of the solutions are the Filipinos themselves. I just wonder why they keep on involving themselves here? And what about our government, what can be the reason why they keep on allowing them to enter in our land and do the exercises where in fact they can do in their own lands? Perhaps, America has helped in so many things like donating second hand choppers, and armors and even donating millions of dollars for the modernization of our armed forces. In exchange, again our country is being used for the interest of the US to expand their territories and alliances so that their capacity to solely triumph economically and geographically will be realized. Again we are in jeopardy and if we always allow things to happen the way we are doing now, then Filipinos will be losers in perpetuity.

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?

If the church should first act on this matter, then we are not different with the Americans. Let the Bangsamoro and the Lumads do their fight first because after all its their land, its their struggle. And maybe the best thing the Church should do is to not to interfere because if the church unites and aid them, the winning will be in favor of the Christians at the expense of Muslims!!! And I’m sure those big portions of lands which supposed to be given to the Moro’s and Lumads will grabbed by the Christians themselves. In the history of the Philippines, how many times did the church interfere and win the battle (Martial Law, Graft and Corruption, Jueteng)? At first it seemed that we won against these adversaries but come to think of it, did our country attain its true liberty after those battles aided by the church? I don’t think so. In fact our condition became worst! If we Christians cannot help ourselves, how can we help others of different faith? I believe that the Church response to the issues of Mindanao is limited to our solidarity with them by not opposing their ideals and aspiration. Let them act and we are here to listen and find our ways not to hinder them in their pursuit of true liberty. Perhaps we should fight the interferers and not to interfere.


3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?

There were plenty of concerns raised in the forum particularly the vastness and wealth of Mindanao which are now occupied by multinational companies in production and plantation. Also due to this struggle, many Muslims, Lumads and settlers leave their lands and find place for their living while others prefer to stay and fight for their sovereignty. Arm struggle now can be the best way to solve such dilemma. Violence , hostility and aggression describe Mindanao which being named as the Land of The Promise. Now the government is taking advantage of such pitfall and pursuing its agenda to change the constitution. Thus this will give way to much greater problem of having abusive, autocratic and pseudo leadership.

4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?

How can we define terrorists? They are the people who brings chaos and danger to the lives of the many. There are terrorist because they are also victims of violence, cruelty and deprivation. The question is who are the real ones? The original terrorist or the victims of terrorism? In the fate of this world, many rebels agree that the super power nations are the real ones because they do everything to protect their interest even to kill steal and destroy. Either of the three, the US, GRP or Muslim Rebels, all of them are terrorist because they involve coercion and violence disregarding the rights of the people to live. The only difference is that MILF, Abu SAYYAF and Al-Qaeda are said to be unlawful while others are not.


5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?

Life to the fullest is the goal of God and ours too. A life that is free from any harm and threats. A life that is serene and tranquil. A life of abundance where people come to the table with enough meal – sharing each others goodness and surpassing care to family and community. This is the “mission Dei” - outreaching love to all especially those who are in need. When we study or teach God’s Word, I believe that this shalom be in the most composition and framework of learning. And our people should be able to relate it to the context of living in the Philippines where only few experience the joy of living. As a pastor, facilitator, teacher, we are to connect the Scripture and the Double Commandments in the light of our present situation. The struggle in Mindanao should be sensed not just the church leaders but by the members and the community as well through communicating the real scenario without religious prejudice and biases

Eman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Manny A. Valdez said...

Reaksyon sa UP Forum on the GRP-MILF MOA on Ancestral Domain

Sabi nga sinusulong ng US ang gira sa mga bansang kanilang kinasasangkutan sa ngayon sa pagnanasang pangasiwaan ang ekunomiya sa buong mundo lalo na ang pangangasiwa sa prudoksyon ng langis. Naniniwala ako dito. Maliban sa mayaman at malawak na lupain, ginto at bronse ang Mindanao ay mayroong langis. Tulad ng pagsakop nila sa mga bansang gitnang-silangan nagtayo ang US ng base Mindanao upang pangasiwaan ang angking yaman ng lupang Mindanao.

Ano nga ba ang maitutulong ng simbahan para maibalik ang sariling lupa at kalayaan ng mga Moslem at Lumads? Personally, hindi ko alam. Ang alamko, hindi sapat na ipagpanalangin natin sila at hindi sapat na tulongan natin silang magrolly o samahan natin silang magpahayag upang kumbinsihin ang gobiernong Filipinas at US na itigilna ang panggigira sa Mindanao. Ang alamko maraming simbahan at mga taong simbahang kristiana ang nandoon sa Mindanao na hindi naman sila tunay na nakatira doon. Ang alamko maibabalik lamang sa mga Moslem at Lumads ang kanilang lupa at kalayaan kung sila na ang namamahala, gumagamit at nakikinabang sa sarili nilang mga lupa. Kung paanong ang mga Moslem at Lumads mangyaring sila mamahala, gagamit at makinabang sa Mindanao ay hindi ko alam. Hindiko alam kung ano ang gagawin ng simbahang kristiano upang paalisin ang kayang mga simbaham at tao na pumunta at tumira na doon ng matagal. Tumigil man ang gira at umalis man doon ang US at Philippine arm forces hindi parin sapat na sabihin natin malaya na sila at kanila na ang kanilang lupa habang nandoon pa ang 70% na populasyon na hindi Moslem at lumads.

Magkaisa ang mga Kristiano at Moslem upang tutulan at itigilna ang dramang ginagawa ng gobierno sa Mindanao ngayon, ang panggigira sa mga Moslem. Tulongan at samahan ang mga kapatid na Moslem upang ilahad sa mga tao ang katutuhanan sa problema sa Mindanao. At tutulan ang “cha-cha” at paalisin si GMA. Ito ang tatlong bagay na naghamun sa akin sa GRP-MILF MOA on Ancestral Domain forum. Para matugunan ang mga hamon na ito, mas lalo akong ginagahanan makiparticipate sa mga pagkilos labas sa kasalukuyang gobierno, pagkilos para sa “anti Cha – Cha” at pagkilos para sa kapayapaan sa Mindanao. Sa mga sermon at bible study sinikap ko ring maging dagdag na usapin ang mga ito. Of course, hindi man ako nananalangin ng more than 5x sa maghapon, kasali ang mga bagay na ito sa aking mga panalangin. Nagagawa ko naring magsalita sa panig ng mga moslem kapag napag-uusapan ang issue sa Mindanao.

Sinasabi ng mga Moslem sila ay hindi terorista kung sila ay nakikipaglaban lamang para kanilang kalayaan. Sila ay tunay na ayaw sa gira, subalit ayaw din nila ang kahirapan, hindi makatarungan, at paglapastang sa karapatang pantao. Nakikipaglaban sila para sa lupa at kalayaan at wala nang iba. Hindi sila kalaban ng gobiernong Filipinas at lalong higit na hindi sila kalaban ng America. Kung maibigay lang ang kanilang karapatan sa lupa at kalayaan sa Mindanao hindi na sila makikipaggira.

Sa mga Sunday school at Bible Studies magandang gamiting ellustrasyon ang mga paksa at issues na kinakaharap ngayon nga mga Moslem sa Mindanao. At mas maganda pa kung gawing paksa sa pag-aaral. Ang usapin na tulad ng Land of promise, lupa at kalayaan, colonialism, pagpapahayag ng katutuhan, freedom Fighter ay mga striking topics na napakagandang pag-usapan sa Biblia. Sa mga usaping ito magandang gamitin ang Exopdo 1:1-16 & 3:7-10, Joshua 1, Isaiah 1:11b-17, Matt. 21:33-45, Mrk 12:1-12, Luc. 20:9-19, Matt. 25:14-30, Luc. 19:11-27, atbp bilang teksto

Tindog Pag iriba said...

Jerome Alvarez
Reflection on MILF-GRP MOA



Ang kasaysayan ang nagpapatunay na ang ugat ng gera sa Mindanao ay hindi usapin ng pamumuno, bagkus ito ay naka ugat sa usapin ng walang habas na pangangamkam ng lupain minana ng mga netibong taga Mindanao.

Ang mayamang lupain ng Mindanao ang pangunahing ponterya ng mga Panginoong Maylupat at ng mga dayuhang gahaman sa pagmamay-ari. Nariyan ang grupo ni Piñol na direktang tumutuligsa sa mga pagkilos ng mamamayan, sapagkat isa siya sa mga papet na nakikinabang sa pangangamkam. Maliban dyan maraming mga papet ang direktang humahawak ng malalaking lupain sa Mindanao.

Ang DOLE PHIL, Banana Plantation at Rubber Plantation ay mga negosyong direktang pinamamahalaan ng mga dayuhang mamomohunan at ginagamit nila ang lupain ng walang malaking ambag sa bayan. Sa karanasan, iniiwan nilang walang pakinabang ang lupaing hinuthutan ng mineral at sustansya.

Sa madaling salita, ang gera sa Mindanao ay laban ng mamamayan laban sa Panginoong Maylupa, bagaman ang paraan ay madahas, sapagkat ang estado ay hindi kayang lumaban ng matahimik, lagging handa ang armadong laruan ng estado upang supilin ang mamamayan.

Sa Tingin malabong masulusyonan ang usapin sa Mindanao sa pamamagitan lamang ng MOA, na syang magiging basehan ng pagtatayo ng isang estado gn Mindanao, mas kailangan paigting ang laban ng mamamayan ng Mindanao sa anti Paginoong Maylupa at isulong ang tunay reporma sa lupa, sapagkat ito ang pangunahing laban ng mamamayang Pilipino.

Malinaw ang indirektang paglalatag ng interes dayuhang mangangalakal, particular ang Estados Unidos, na tinagurin dambuhalang halimaw, ginagamit nito ang military upang sanayin ay mamamayan sa takot at pagtatago, sa programang “Balikatan Exercises” inilatag nila ang kanilang tropa upang masanay sa lugar at magin pamilyar sa mga tao, marahil ito ay hudyat ng direktang pagsakop ng US particular sa mga lugar na hindi pa nasisira t maraming pang mapapakinabanagan.

Sa ganitong kalagayan, ang tinaguriang “ The Land of Promise” ay pangako hindi para sa mga netibong lumad at moslem, bagkus ito ay inagaw ng mga local na panginoong maylupat at ang kasabwat nitong dayuhan, ang mga pinangakuan ay sya ngayong terorista sa sarilin bayan.

Wastong humanay ang mga taong simbahan sa patuloy na panawagang tumugon sa laban ng mamamayan laban sa Impersyalistang Estados Unidos at mga local na panginoong Lupa.

Sa mga aralin sa loob ng simbahan ay nararapat na ilinaw ang ugat ng kaguluhan sa Mindanao, dapat maging bahagi ito ng ministeryo ng simbahan sapakat bahagi ito ng sangnilikha atbilang mga Kristyano dapat tayong maging mulat sa ganitong kalalagayan.

Ito ang aral ng Lukas 10:27, mahalin mo ang iyong Kapwa, sa kalagayan ng mga mamamayang lumad at moslem, bagaman iba ang kanilang paraang ng pananampalatya, dapat lamang na maging bahagi tayo ng kanilang pakikibaka dahil ito ang tunay na larangang kinabibilangan ng mamamayang PILIPINO, ang labanan ang IMPERYALISMO, BURU KRATA KAPITALISMO AT PYUDALISOM.

vannawl said...

Questions Reaction Paper on GRP-MILF Forum

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
From a single agenda item, MILF subsequently drafted nine sub-themes, which were eventually narrowed to three: (1) security, (2) rehabilitation, and (3) ancestral domain. Interim agreements have been signed on the first two agenda items and the parties are now set to tackle the third, ancestral domain.
Ancestral domain is the single most important and, arguably, the thorniest issue that is still to be negotiated by the MILF and the Philippine government before they can reach a political settlement. Ancestral domain refers to Moro demand for territory that will constitute a Moro homeland; sufficient control over economic resources on that territory; and a structure of governance that will allow Moros to govern themselves in ways that are consonant with their culture and with minimal interference from Manila.
I think US should not get in other countries affairs. I feel this way because it makes the U.S. look like they caused all the wars and fight just to gain more power. This was the mind of the U.S. trying to gain that they didn’t belong to them. They wanted to be on the top of other territories. I feel like the U.S. should stay out of other countries affairs.

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
With a population of 16 million, Mindanao is the second largest island and is seen by many Filipinos as a frontier — a dangerous place but also a land of promise. It evokes contrasting images of bounty and want, of war and peace, of rapid development amid the increasing impoverishment of its people.
Lumads have a traditional concept of land ownership based on what their communities consider their ancestral territories. The historian BR Rodil notes that ‘a territory occupied by a community is a communal private property, and community members have the right of usufruct to any piece of unoccupied land within the communal territory.’ Ancestral lands include cultivated land as well as hunting grounds, rivers, forests, uncultivated land and the mineral resources below the land. Unlike the Moros, the Lumad groups never formed a revolutionary group to unite them in armed struggle against the Philippine government. When the migrants came, many Lumad groups retreated into the mountains and forests. However, the Moro armed groups and the Communist-led New People’s Army (NPA) have recruited Lumads to their ranks, and the armed forces have also recruited them into paramilitary organizations to fight the Moros or the NPA.
For the Lumad, securing their rights to ancestral domain is as urgent as the Moros’ quest for self-determination. However, much of their land has already been registered in the name of multinational corporations, logging companies and wealthy Filipinos, many of whom are settlers to Mindanao. Mai Tuan, a T’boli leader explains. As they are the original land owner, we should not blame them for their action against the Philippine Government. However, it would be better for both the Government and MILF to have peace-talk for the result of war is destructive.

3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
The first concern that challenged me at the forum was the word “peace”. As Christian, If we affirm the gospel of peace at the level of basic beliefs, then that truth must be close to the center of the church's message and mission. Peace is not something tacked on after the gospel is proclaimed; it is an integral part of the offer of salvation. Calling forth peace convictions, grounded in biblical theology, should be as basic as talking about Jesus, the Bible, and the meaning of salvation
The second concern that challenged me at the forum was the word “sovereignty”. It is the concept of the MILF that the government possesses full control over its own affairs within a territorial or geographical area or limit. As a democracy country, everybody should have the right to get what they should. Now the original land owner cannot get any authority in their own land because of the total sovereignty of the Philippine government. This makes me think that the government also should give the people the right they have to say and get.
The third concern that challenged me at the forum was the word “liberty”. Actually, the MILF is not a group of terrorist, they are just fighter for liberty. Terrorism can and must be fought without sacrificing our human rights. It must be resentful for them to be regarded as terrorist. As human being, they cannot bear with living under the sovereignty of others in their own land. So fighting for liberty is not violation of the world human right, but just self-protection.

4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
As one author writes, “defining terrorism is a difficult task.” It is true, for example Several countries throughout the world consider the United States, several Western European states, and Israel as undertaking terrorist actions. So we should keep in mind that one group’s ‘freedom fighters’ may be another group’s ‘terrorists.’ In the case of Mindanao, the US and the philippine government think of the MILF as terrorist group. However, the terrorist gourp for them is a freedom fighter for the land, which is thought as the promise land. So it is natural that one cannot be good to all, in the same way one can not be bad for all.

5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
As Christian, the gospel not only offers us deliverance from our enemies, it also sets us free from the destructive cycle of violence at all levels of life. Knowing that one belongs to the family of God, the believer is enabled to live out the call to justice, peace, service and selfgiving. “Only those who know they are loved and rejoice in that love can be true peacemakers, because the intimate knowledge of being loved sets us free to look beyond the boundaries of death and to speak and act fearlessly for peace.” The specific reference for encouraging peace making is in Matthew 5:9.

gracemawi said...

Reaction Paper on GRP-MILF forum

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
Answer; The US has been involved in almost all the issues and wars over the world. US defense policy has been back-up by huge amount of dollars sometime greater than entire budget of many developing countries. Its government claims that they have significant role in attaining a more peaceful life of humanity – that they protect the well being of the world. Whether this is true or not, its intervention in conflicts especially in the subject of clash in Mindanao seems to be a big mistake. No doubt, US want to have control over the world. They try to put their base in all strategic points where in any eventuality can have advantage of the situation. Recently one prominent Senator questioned the involvement of the US in GRP-MILF MOA. It is little bit confusing altogether. Who invited US? Of course according to Atty. Musib Baut, MILF has nothing to do with US. Therefore, if his answer is honest, it is either GRP or US themselves as both country signed the Visiting Forces Agreement, specifically the Balikatan Exercises to counter and clean up the terrorists groups in Mindanao. Aside from Philippines being a strategic point for trade and commerce in Asia and needless to say it seems also for military base for engaging war with the big super power Asian countries. As Ms Amirah, National President SUARA Bangsamoro presented about the richness of natural resources in the Mindanao region, it is likely that US wants to take part in plundering the wealth of the Mindanao. According to her, some multinational corporations; mostly from the west, wants to explore and exploit the rich natural resources.

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
Answer; As a Christian, we were taught that the land of promise only refers to what God has given to Abraham and his descendants. Somehow, it could displaced and related to the Moslems and Lumads of Mindanao, promises made by Government. Of course let the Bangsamoro and the Lumads do their fight first because after all its their land, its their struggle. And maybe the best thing the Church should do is to not to interfere, instead the church should stand in solidarity with the landless and those are being oppressed. The Churches has a greater challenge than before. We claim ourselves to proclaim a message of truth to others must live and exercise that truth in spirit and in action. The churches are challenged to shed light to the dark injustices and oppression. Moral lesson is best taught when everyone have food to eat and place to live. I believe that the Church response to the issues of Mindanao is limited to our solidarity with them by not opposing their ideals and aspiration. Let them act and we are here to listen and find our ways not to hinder them in their pursuit of true liberty.

3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
Answer; My first main concern at the forum was the word “sovereignty”. It seems MILF stands and fight for the Bangsamoro land and separated from the Philippines and they have been struggle for decades from the Philippines. Of course, the Philippine government will not easily give up part of her.
Another concern is the common goal of various rebel groups operating in the region. As I am also coming from a similar political situation, where various rebels groups cannot compromise with other rebels groups’ goal and aspiration. Though all of them claim to fight against the military government, yet there are differences where it seems impossible to come together under one banner. It is the same situation for the rebel groups in the Mindanao. My concern for them is dialogues and honest communication is the only solution for them various groups to come together.
Another concern is the leadership issue. We have witness even from the recent history that there are civil wars and bloodshed in the newly formed nations. While the issue is related to various rebel groups again but particularly the MILF. Do the leadership in the MILF control the subordinate commanders? In fact the recent conflict between the MILF and government forces shows that the MILF leadership failed to control the local commanders. Now, MILF had a talked with the GRP, what. about the rest of groups? Are the other rebels groups willing to submit to the command of MILF? Equal attention to all rebel groups stand a great challenge for the GRP.

4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
Answer; People simply define the word “terrorists” as the people who brings chaos and danger to the lives of the many. Indeed, there are terrorist because they are also victims of violence, cruelty and deprivation. But the problem is who are the real ones? Most of the existing government would say that those who against the government rebels groups are the real terrorist. On the other hand, many rebels agree that the super power nations are the real ones because they do everything to protect their interest even to kill steal and destroy. Either of the three, the US, GRP or Muslim Rebels, all of them are terrorist because they involve coercion and violence disregarding the rights of the people to live. The only difference is that MILF, Abu SAYYAF and Al-Qaeda are said to be unlawful while others are not.
5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
Answer; We as a Christian should stand for peace, justice and well being of others. While attempting to bring peace and justice, we are to engage in bringing mutual understanding between the conflicting parties. The golden rule, Jesus gave His disciples. This text is fit to what is happening in Mindanao and personally providing that the GRP and we Christians are not giving the Bangsamoro people what is worth for them.
Fullness of life is the goal of God and ours too. A life that is free from any harm and threats. God has created us in His own image and likeness. A life of abundance where people come to the table with enough meal – sharing each others goodness and surpassing care to family and community. This is our mission - outreaching love to all especially those who are in need.

ma beate mantilla hernandez said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ma beate mantilla hernandez said...

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
Basing the agenda of US in our talks to forces and involvement to peace negotiations can be too far from what we normally know as citizens of this country. There are still shades of truth that are not fairly interpreted to people and its most innocent thoughts, comprehension and educational capacity. This too may lead us to realize of how far we are able to know their agenda. America’s involvement has been deeply felt even during the years of history, Philippine struggle for truth and justice. In the talks and subject of MILF, there are different organizations, personalities involved, there lone purpose is for peace to prevail, but time and origin of sin seemed to pin down our entire goal.
2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
The church by its natural essence as the source of strength and voice for the community and the social significance; the truth is, it has also naturally forgotten by the body of which it is called for the people. The purpose of the Church is now, that the call of Christ’s teaching be proclaimed, Churches has to respond on the call for mission and educating our people to become people of God, telling, going and doing mission. Become Holy and saints for the work of Christ. Holy is when you do the right thing, just and merciful to people, it is only in this manner that we may all live to protect our people and give God the glory by blessing the people of whom He came for. Land and liberty has already given and proved its purpose, man has clamored for sin, the purpose of the Church is now, live out the faith and rescue the perishing.
3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
CHILDREN/WOMEN/FUTURE – I am challenged (if there could be bestest word) to become a part for this process of proclaiming and declaring our serious share in peace with the prevailing problem and suffering of Children, Women and Future of our Brothers and Sisters in Mindanao. If these things are happening and would still happen, children from the past war would only live by the truth of harboring hatred and future revenge, women and community will be instilled with some grudge and disillusionment with our national leaders and how they deal with this kind of chaos. I would strongly reiterate on our part as Church people to become very heedful in our theological education on conflict management, become lines of social partaking by leading our people to what the God of peace and justice taught His people. Be it truly part of our worship life and community concerns that things happening though far from where we are is still affecting our entire nation.
4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
This phrase is a life lived by Jesus Christ, his presence, teachings and advocacy is an act of terrorism declared by those who govern with personal interest, governed by the power not lived in righteousness. Brothers and sisters in Christ we may at some point become the judgement of those who become the person who are willing to give it all for Christ. This Mindanao crisis and America’s War on terror calls for our serious examination of ourselves as a citizen of the Philippines, who are truly living in this country, with a heart that beats for freedom and responsibility.
5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
I live by the text that simply tells about the Mighty Power of God, the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. John 10:10. The text reminds of the reality of life’s prevailing acts of the work of the thief, destroying work of the world and its ways, but Christ has fulfilled His promise. Parker Palmer in his book LET YOUR LIFE SPEAK retells our very purpose as Christ coming into this world. He said: the evil you see in others is lurking in you, in us are different monsters, insecurity, fear, depravity. Today we are encouraged to become a person, a nation who walks and talks about Christ’s teaching of peace and care for the poor.


submitted by:
Ma. Beate Mantilla-ernandez,RND

marlon said...

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
Answer-It was really mystery to us as Filipino why USA pursuing their involvement about ancestral domain in Mindanao through BALIKATAN exercises (Joint Military Training). But fortunately, as we concerned Filipino citizens, we analyzed this issue as a hidden tactics which is a hidden threat for the Mindanao and even for the entire Philippines. Although the US government saying that Establishing US armed forces “new base” in Mindanao will help establish the good relationship to the Philippines and the America (maybe a good reason) but we see this action as an easy way of establishing “shield-protection” for the US country against other outside forces. This very first agenda of US is an agenda of maintaining their control in our country in which our government is still blind in this issue. Perhaps the mind our government has is that with the relationship to US we will stand but the real fact we can stand even without the help of other country especially the US. In the same vein, The US also maintaining to colonized our whole aspect of “armed forces” so that they will easily able to inject their military agenda.
In addition to it, the US also wants to capture Mindanao’s natural resources. On the other hand, although the US government is really serious in eradicating the terrorism worldwide but the in the case of GRP-MILF agreement, they secretly manipulating the Philippine Government by giving advises which unfortunately the RPG embracing it.
2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
Answer- absolutely, there is no problem of every time the church answers every problems by praying or extremely by sacrificial fasting. Moreover, the church should always “makialam” involved through actions. Thus, at first, the church should not be divided but have one voice of promoting what is right and truth on every issues encountered. For we never hide that even the churches are divided in addressing issues. In short, the churches should involve with unity of addressing the truth about this issue. Furthermore, churches should always be reminded of never compromised by the land-rich and trans-nationals but rather churches should never stop in telling the truth and to be in the side of the oppressed people. In relating the question, churches are expecting to act purely in addressing the issue of oppressor and the oppressed people without compromising the truth. Like the forum I had attended, it was a big help for all to be able to understand by the churches the real feelings and understanding of Bangsamoro and the facts and supporting evidences of the whole issues before addressing the problem.

3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
Answer- first, I am concerned to the recent condition of the Bangsamoro, Lumad and Moslems. Knowing the fact they are now experiencing shocks caused by past military encounter. Sharing my prayers and advocating to other people the real issues about them can simply help enlighten their burden. Second, I am very concerned on the condition of our government that makes all worried. Full of laws in his body but the teeth of justice are poor. How sad to say, that majority happened to its territory feels pains and suffering. In the same breath, it has a hard time and delayed time in addressing issues that needs immediate actions. How sad that even inside the government there is no unity rather the conflicts, disunity self interest truly driven them that this situation of the government is not really surprising. In my point of view, to change constitution is not the big problem rather to transform and eradicate the wrong doings of every officer of every position in the government. Third, I am concerned for the future condition of our country, which until now the Filipino people are not really experiencing freedom in their own land. UNTIL now the past problems (historically) in ancestral domain are not yet solve that makes more and more Filipino people become hopeless about this. It is not impossible that one day in our country, ALL Filipino especially the poor will be the strangers in his own land due to the fact it is happening nowadays.
4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
Terrorism in the mind of others is dangerous and has the hands of spreading bloodshed of chaos. In relation to Mindanao crisis, is the MILF are really the terrorists which we know the fact MILF are the one who are fighting for their rights of their ancestral domain. How about the US who is the one’s supporting our past and recent government? The US who is the one established their own Military Base. It is true that we condemned the MILF of disrespecting the human rights and the Law of God through killing people for using them as their human shield against AFP armed forces only to bring back to them their ancestral domain and it is also true that the US killed other innocent people of different parts of the world trying to maintain their territories and power. These two main issues were evident by the history and in my point of view; the two made them become terrorist of their own wrong doings for their own self agenda/interest. They have their own sentiments and I understand it but we cannot support the way of killing people just to maintain their personal interest.
5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
As teachers and pastors of Sunday school in church, we have big responsibility of imparting the issue of what is happening in Mindanao. We should share this issue appropriately and faithfully understood for the truth. So that our members will be informed the truth through our encouragement of letting them become involve and make them capable to address this issue. One of the best passage that is appropriate in relating the issues found in Matthew 7:12 “Do for others what you want them to do for you: this is the meaning of the Law of Moses and of the teachings of the prophets”. It is very helpful for all that reminding every member by this passage will enlighten the truth of respecting and establishing one’s property and rights for living without discrediting or dishonoring neighbors with different race, religion and etc.

Personal reflection:

MARLON B. DIAZ
MDIV- II

BIBLE STUDY METHODS AND CURRICULUMN DEVELOPMENT

THE GRP-MILF MOA IN ANCESTRAL DOMAIN AND ITS IMPLICATION TO THE PEACE PROCESS


It was a challenging rainy day, August 20, 2008 when UTS students together with the faculty went to University Hotel, UP Diliman in Quezon City for a very serious forum entitled “The GRP (Government of the Republic of the Philippines) and the MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front) MOA (Memorandum of Agreement) on Ancestral Domain. This forum was focused in a very serious and critical issue involving Muslim Mindanao specially the Bangsamoro community who experienced traumatic condition nowadays caused by military war against the AFP and MILF armies.

About the forum where as the three resource speakers, MILF Peace Negotiation Panel member, Atty. Musib Buat; Miss Amirah Alilidasan, National President of Suwaran Bangsamoro and Bayan Muna Representative Satur Ocampo trying to compress every significant factors of the very ample issue about the ancestral domain. In my understanding, they said that the recent killings in Mindanao including the Bangsamoro community were triggered not merely by religious matter but by not completing the agreement undertook by the government for the MILF like the Tripoli Agreement 1976 and the 1996 Final Peace Accord, final agreement signed by the principals of GRP and MILF. I was looking for the real cause of organizing this agreement. The MOA will not be needed if there is no conflict. There was no bloodshed in Bangsamoro if there is no disagreement. In my point of view, the root cause is not the killings in Bangsamoro but it is only one of the symptoms. Infact, killings in Bangsamoro became the key-opener for the issue of the root- cause. The real root-cause of the merciless blood-shed, destroying houses and properties happened in Bangsamoro community and town neighbor is all about the problem of Ancestral Domain trying to win by other foreign and local investors. Unfortunately, this issue is not really new issue but as a matter of fact this very issue is historical problem not only in Mindanao but of an entire land of Philippines. On the other hand, the fact that not the whole ancestral land of Mindanao is involved in the issue but due to the understanding that most of the land were taken already by the foreign and local investors and also by the other‘s interest like military interests of America. On the same vein, small land of Mindanao was forced to divide and steal from the MILF. Through this condition I made me realize why most of the MILF armies forcedly want their sons and daughters trained in military training on the time of their innocent mind. Perhaps, MILF believed that the rights they were fighting will not end easily and they need to sustain it through their next generation.

Nevertheless, even thou I understood the belief and rights of the MILF but I am not agreeing on how they executed their way of recapturing the attention of the GMA government. It is not agreeable religiously and morally. Killing people is a sign of disrespecting also for international Human Rights and the law of GOD.

Finally, if we take a look the entire problem of the ancestral Domain in Mindanao, the two involved participants in the agreement have their own mistakes and misunderstanding in dealing the issue. The both RPG and MILF were not really addressing the needs of the problem and additionally, RPG continuously allowing others to be involved like US and unfortunately RPG was dictated by US international agenda.

Will the MOA- of the GRP-MILF truly help eradicating the shout of war and the lamentation of the people in Mindanao especially the Bangsamoro? I see the MOA as a band-aid solution not for the problem. Will the MOA truly give Bangsamoro assurance of peace?

Generally, The Bangsamoro, Mindanao or the entire land of Philippines will not have long-lived genuine peace in land if there’s no genuine freedom, real democracy and real societal justice for the Bangsamoro and for the whole Filipino people. The shout of lamentation of the people of Mindanao especially the Bangsamoro as long as the MILF and the RPG will remain their stands of resuming the all-out war in the land.

Khar said...

Reaction Paper on the UP Forum on the GRP-MILF MOA on Ancestral Domain, held at the UP Hotel on August 20, 2008,

1#.
The US has been involved in almost all the issues and wars over the world. US defense policy has been back-up by huge amount of dollars sometime greater than entire budget of many developing countries. For some reasons, American has been reluctant to leave Philippines completely. America’s involvement has been deeply felt even during the years of history, Philippine struggle for truth and justice. In the talks and subject of MILF, there are different organizations, personalities involved, there lone purpose is for peace to prevail, but time and origin of sin seemed to pin down our entire goal.

2#.


There seems to be problem with the word “The Land of Promise”. As a Christian, we were taught from our Sunday school that Israelites were going to “the land of promise”. While somehow, they could displaced some of the original inhabitants saying it is “promise land” by God. However, till today they are fighting for this “promise land”. Now, I am not questioning the promise of God but God has His own time and sometime our finite mind can not understand His infinite meaning of “promise land” In fact our condition became worst! If we Christians cannot help ourselves, how can we help others of different faith? I believe that the Church response to the issues of Mindanao is limited to our solidarity with them by not opposing their ideals and aspiration. Let them act and we are here to listen and find our ways not to hinder them in their pursuit of true liberty. Perhaps we should fight the interferers and not to interfere.

3#.

CHILDREN/WOMEN/FUTURE – I am challenged (if there could be bastes word) to become a part for this process of proclaiming and declaring our serious share in peace with the prevailing problem and suffering of Children, Women and Future of our Brothers and Sisters in Mindanao. If people determine to live as separate land, nothing can stop them; it will surface from generation to generation.
Another concern is the common goal of various rebel groups operating in the region. I am told by my Filipinos friends that there are several rebel groups operating in the regions. As I am also coming from a similar political situation, where various rebels groups can not compromise with other rebels groups’ goal and aspiration. Though all of them claim to fight against the government, yet there are differences where it seems impossible to come together under one banner. I have the same concern for the rebel groups in the Mindanao. Dialogues and honest communication is the only solution for them various groups to come together. One has to think of other as an equal compatriot.

4#.

The problems start when one is greedy and meddle with other affairs. The situation in the Mindanao got worst as ‘Al-Qaeda’ activities was traced to Moslems rebels in the region.





It was like ‘scratching in the right spot’. US took advantage of the link probably more than what they could get. For MILF and other rebel groups, they are, with all their honesty and sincerity want freedom of Bangsamoro and they will engage in everything which deem necessary. As US have been actively engage in the Asian political issues, the situation in Mindanao provide a perfect platform to continue their ‘power itchy’ policy. Every activities of the rebel groups in the region are define as an act of terrorism. The problem will persist as long as acceptable solution is presented on the table.

5#.

Life to the fullest is the goal of God and ours too. A life that is free from any harm and threats. A life that is serene and tranquil. A life of abundance where people come to the table with enough meal – sharing each others goodness and surpassing care to family and community. Fullness of life is the goal of God and ours too. A life that is free from any harm and threats. God has created us in His own image and likeness. A life of abundance where people come to the table with enough meal – sharing each others goodness and surpassing care to family and community. This is our mission - outreaching love to all especially those who are in need.

Submitted
By

Khar Ling
M.Div II yrs.
PCU-UTS.

san said...

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US' Armed Forces "new base" in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America's involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States' agenda in all these?
Answer: I think the US and the GRP have hidden agenda to please and present good ideas and intentions, which seem to be a benefit for the Filipinos fighting for their rights but ultimately the foreigners’ own interests prevail. Why is there an America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF which is supposed to be NO involvement? I can just clearly see their personal business regarding this matter. Through involving themselves, they can get more freedom to do what they want to do in this country.
2. Mindanao has traditionally been called "The Land of Promise." Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island's real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads' clamor for land and liberty?
Answer: Our church really need to act, work and help the people fight for their rights through making them aware of their responsibilities to work out for their rights without having fear but the courage, inspiration, strong determination to do it. Of course the support of the Christian community is of a great help and inspiration for them to move confidently. It is good thing to know that church involvement for the oppressed people fighting for their rights is now growing strong, backing up those people in need of courage and strength to go on. Our prayers and actions of being one with them can do a lot of things.

On the other hand, I was reflecting “why is it that the church doesn’t have a sufficient, tough and powerful ministry for the wealthy people who are greedy of land; who grab lands; who owned vast lands. They must be taught that the land is a gift from above which is for every people created by God. Our church must have a rigid ministry for the landed-rich for them to be taught of the spirit of sharing.
Our church people must be aware of this present real situation of our society in order to create possibilities and opportunities for help.
3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
Answer: First, I am challenged with the article of the LKM (Liga ng Kabataang Moro) because at their young age, they are able to join their parents and families to struggle for their human rights and privileges. Thus, being a member of the Christian community, I hope and pray for their success and I desire that I would be given an opportunity to meet even one of the young members of this organization to be of help to them in my own simple way. The young people are burdened with this kind of situation, I can imagine the more burdens laid on their parents. Personally, I feel the burden and I want to be a part and I look forward for the Christian churches in the Philippines to move and act.
The Church need to promote the well-being of the poor and marginalized in the society as an expression of Christian compassion. The church must continue to promote unity and transformation of society.

I am also in support with the decision of the NCCP to maintain the amendment of the constitution under the present administration. Indeed our church is responsible enough to carry and to bear with the burdened people around our society. They need the church! They really need us!

Finally, the challenge for me is to be in solidarity with the people in this country although I am not a native here, it is my earnest aspiration to be one of those who continue to push for genuine peace talks and with my hopes and prayers that all may be well in this country.
4. What does the phrase "one person's terrorist is another person's freedom fighter" mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America's "War on Terror"?
Answer: On my own understanding, in the light of Mindanao crisis, America is considered as their terrorist because America freely runs their business and personal interest on their ancestral lands instead of the Filipinos enjoying their own. On the other hand, America is struggling with terrorists from other countries. These terrorist against America are considered fighter for freedom in favor of those people around the world who are exploited and oppressed and abused by the US.
5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
Answer: We can simply integrate all these concerns in our churches’ bible studies and Sunday Schools by creating a Bible study series concerning our Social issues. The church must be aware enough to carry and do their responsibilities on our society as agents of God’s love and peace. As people f God, it is our duty to be channels of God’s love and goodness. I am reminded of John Wesley saying” there is no holiness than social holiness” (paraphrased) Thus, we ought to help people who are in depression, oppression; the poor. They must find and feel belongingness and shalom from the church. We are called to promote peace and love; to carry the light to brighten the darkened paths in our society.
Specific passages that would help the church are LUKE 4. 18-19 and Micah 6.8.

Submitted by
San Pwint
M.Div Senior

JABEZUMC said...

EMMANUEL D. BANG-ASAN
MDIV II

REACTION PAPER on
The controversial GRP-MILF MOA

GRP-MILF-MOA on Ancestral Domain has now been the subject of much discussion. I myself have been saying that the MOA in its present state is not much more than a piece of paper.

The MOA has a legal, psychological and political implications. In fact, I am not even sure that, in terms of constitutionally , the MOA is “ripe” for JUDICIAL REVIEW. It is clear that these objectives cannot be achieved by a mere memorandum of agreement. Even if the MOA were signed today, none of the goals enumerated in the MOA would be ripe for implementation. For this reason I am surprised that the documents enumeration of terms of reference the Philippine Constitution is not mentioned. And it is also for this reason that in my view the controversy is not yet “RIPE” for judicial review. The controversial MOA product of innumerable GRP-MILF dialogues, did not go through a broad consultation. The lack of consultation is now being defended by government as a matter of “EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE.” A “MONOTONY” not “AUTONOMY”. An “AUTO-MONEY” for the Arroyo’s administration and not an “AUTONOMY” for peace in Mindanao or even for the entire country.

I find that this is to be ridiculous. It is an embodiment of the will of the sovereign people of Mindanao. It is ridiculous to exclude the people from the formulation of what is supposed to be the expression of their will. However it is not hopeless situation, it is not too late for the people to get involved, as in fact they are already being involved. Unfortunately the circumstances have made the matter highly explosive. In the end, those who are pushing for achievement of the goals of the MOA will have no choice but to feed it into the legislative process. And the legislature will have the opportunity to conduct all the needed hearings in aid of legislation.

I just hope that the executive department will not once again wave its signature flag of “EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE” Indeed, when the documents begin to be subjected to scrutiny, there will be a lot to debate about. There is also the matter of expanding the territory of the proposed Bangsamoro Juridical Entity. There is now loud weeping and gnashing of teeth about this. It is also obvious that the wish of the MILF is to have a stronger say about the natural resources within the territory they desire to control. Crafting the final law on the subject will very likely necessitate constitutional amendment.





And what about governance? The MOA speaks of a relationship with the national government which is “associative characterized by shared authority.”

The language is GREEK or maybe HEBREW that needs for translation. Toward the end of the document I find this passage: “Any provisions of the MOA on Ancestral Domain requiring amendments to the existing legal framework shall come into force upon the signing of a comprehensive compact and upon effecting the necessary changes to the legal framework with due regard to non derogation of prior agreements and within the stipulated timeframe contained in the comprehensive compact.” The paragraph is HIGHLY LOADED AND WILL NEED A LOT OF EXEGESIS. Finally if and when the government representatives sign the MOA, what will they be agreeing to and of what binding force will their agreement be? Will these and other questions be clarified in the scheduled oral arguments? And now they say; the solution is ALL OUT WAR…Oh come on GMA.???
ALL OUT WAR???? Absolutely NEVER. In the United Methodist Church BOOK OF DISCIPLINE 2004, sighted that, we believe war is incompatible with the teaching and example of Christ. We therefore reject war as an instrument of national foreign policy, to be employed only as a last resort in the prevention of such evils as genocide, brutal suppression of human rights, and unprovoked international aggression. We insist that the first moral duty of all nations is to resolve by peaceful means every dispute that arises between or among them; that human values must outweigh military claims as governments determine their priorities; that the militarization of society must be challenged and stopped; that the manufacture, sale, and deployment of armaments must be reduced and controlled; and that the production, possession, or use of nuclear weapons be condemned. Consequently, we endorse general and complete disbarment under strict and effective international control.
In this statement I myself strongly oppose the GRP-MILF Peace Panel Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain ("GRP-MILF MOA") because it is flawed in the process just as it is flawed in its provisions. What was lost in the process was any appreciation for legitimacy in a democracy that stems from winning consensus, including the consent of the governed. Many, if not all, of its provisions violate the Constitution, which strangely enough the Memorandum never mentions by name.
The GRP-MILF MOA is a proposal (crafted in private and sprung on the public) to dismember the Republic of the Philippines, a prelude to creating a state within a state, if not to create an independent and sovereign one, and a provocation to a bitter struggle of brother against brother. Just as reprehensible, it is a TROJAN HORSE VIRUS signed to be foisted on our unwitting people to perpetuate the incumbent’s power and her abuse of it.
The Memorandum of Agreement will result in a diminution of Philippine sovereignty as it empowers its juridical creation to enter into economic agreements and trade relations with foreign countries, to open trade missions abroad, and to participate in meetings of the ASEAN and UN specialized agencies where only sovereign states take part.
Without prior and adequate discussion and debate of the significant consequences of the proposed modifications, we are being committed to alter the Constitution, to change the civil service, electoral, financial and banking, education, legislation, legal, economic, and political systems.
It sets aside the time-honored principles of sanctity of contract and inviolability of vested rights to grant the Bangsamoro juridical entity the power to modify, revise, and even supersede significant long-term contracts and agreements duly entered into by relevant government authorities and private parties.
Accordingly, we join our voices with those who have gone to the Supreme Court to prohibit permanently the formal signing of the GRP-MILF MOA as presently worded. We ask, together with our countrymen in the South and in the North, for a peace that is the fruit of an open covenant, openly arrived at through frank negotiations in full public view, consistent with our nationwide aspiration for a regime of truth, justice, freedom, love, equality, and peace.
GRP-MILF-MOA is a front for larger ridiculous plan of Arroyo administration, its scrap. That plan for Charter Change. We need a real peace not the fake. We don’t need peace temporarily, we need permanently. We are for peace in the entire Philippines, in Mindanao, in Visayas, and in Luzon. We are for a peace process that consults all and involves all. We are for transparency at every step of the process, from negotiation of the terms, through to the articulation of the agreement and the implementation of its provisions. We are for a permanent peace by all, for all, for all time.

Jonathan Patadlas said...

Jonathan S. Patadlas
M.Div Middler
Bible Study Methods and Curriculum Development

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?

Answer: Jesus chose the place near Galilee as his “tambayan” place for this is where the convergence of the people from different places who journey and do trade as well. The Americans are clever too. They know Philippines is a good strategic place in doing not only business but also her expansion to its military control, of course needless to say also exploitation. Because it would be a wise technique to build a military base afar from your home base (US) where collateral damages are expected (Philippines). The US has always been too involved in various international disputes and most of the times she is colored with hidden agenda that usually boil down to their interest to natural resources particularly oil of which the Philippines has too, just awaiting to be intensely explored.

Of course the Balikatan exercise in Mindanao is nothing but just façade of the great show where the US government could supposedly extend a hand for our military, training them to become good fighter for terrorists. But who are these terrorists? We hastily and unjustly refer them to Muslim people, who for too long were also deprived of their ancestral land. These white men have been here quite sometimes already. Now, would not the GRP and MILF negotiations be a good reason for their much timely involvement to feed their desire of a broader military control? TAKING CHANCE could be the word fit for their involvement. Of course we always welcome helps especially if they are sincerely for our good. But if their helps would only cost us too much in return why not learn to refuse?

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich. What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?

Answer: For the time being, the best that the church can do is to be a sanctuary for the refugees who are displaced as the aftermath of the military and MILF encounter. This is the least though. The term “land of promise” could not be as something that someone promised to somebody. It is because Mindanao was and is a promising location due to its natural resources that is literally self-sufficient and even much more that it can feed the whole Philippines. And it so happened that the Bangsamoro or the Land of the Muslim is part of this land. Their lives revolve here. They live and want to die here. But for the longest time from whence their forefathers birthed a dream of claiming a distinction from their religious belief by having a land of their own, nothing was really realized.

They deserve such a space and their own way of governance since there would probably be no leader anymore who could attend to them in sincere service, for their faces are pegged already on corruption. This is what had surfaced if I were to summarize the subjective content of the MOA on the side of the MILF or the Moro people. And this is neither bad nor unconstitutional. So where do we put the church now? Will the church be irrelevant into this talk? Of course not. The church has never been irrelevant nor should be passive in any ordeal especially in matters of oppression and social liberty. The church as it is designed for, is to liberate the people from the social evil. It should remain constant, not siding for anything but truth and justice. For example, the church could not just be silent to the technicality of that MOA which made the government somehow lean back for the final signing, why it has delayed that far. Nor can it also just easily appraise the upsurge of hostility as “reasonable” for the Moro side since they appear to be the victim. The church can help educate the society by closely monitoring the pact, helping them package every deal with “fear of the Lord” and with justice and moral uprightness.

3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?

Answer: 1) Land is part of a people’s identity. This is source of life. The MOA and all the rest of its intricacies should be handled properly without a tinge of political and hidden agenda. 2) Militarization has caused so many lives already in Mindanao. The government has to take an immediate solution to this in order to bring about peace in the land. So much cost of economy has also been garnered which would only worsen the situation of the poor and the marginalized. 3) US involvement. The foreign military should know where to place itself. The government, if until now has not yet known or perhaps just don’t want to know, that the US government is up to something else in the guise of the Balikatan exercise. We should by now think with trembling what could become to us if their military bases are to be installed here. We could be the target of those countries that the US fights. Their missiles could be dropped here turning our country into ashes.

4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?

Answer: The phrase talks about one person being viewed at two different and opposing perspectives. Obviously each perspective is prejudiced relative to the other one. While most Filipinos especially Christians view America’s involvement to our crisis to be heaven-sent that would topple down terrorist attacks in our country but in reality they become the terrorist themselves that destroy our own people and sovereignty as a whole, especially if this is looked at the perspective of the Moro people. The two opposing ideas are to be handled critically by those who are expert of the laws for these also bring about some compromises and gray matters which may deceive us and may benefit only the few, especially those who are hungry of power.

5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?

Answer: Our Sunday school classes are our frontlines in all of the churches’ desire to participate in the so-called social change that we dream about to effect in our corrupt Philippines. Since this is the place where the people can get to theologize and make sense of his/her faith in line to the economic, political and social environment that she/he belongs. The church once again has to be faithful to its calling that is to lead the people to the righteous choices the community has to face. But the church should not also forget that it possesses the power of God whom God intended it so that through her God’s wisdom can be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms (Eph 3:10). In all of the Government’s mistakes and weaknesses, the people should still remain respectful to it since there’s no authority that God did not establish (Rom 13:1). But what should be largely emphasized in all of the government’s undertakings are the three things which God require of us: To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God (Micah 6:8) which if to be followed religiously, perhaps in one sitting down, we can eradicate conflict.

randy U said...

Randy G. Ugaddan
1. The visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base”
The Balikatan Exercises, hastily planned, designed to further extend the U.S. military presence in the world and provide a follow-up to Afghanistan while war fever is still widespread in the U.S., is at best a disproportionate response to a limited, local problem. It was not initiated by the Filipino side, and indeed its implementation has produced a political firestorm in our country. The justification of the operation, hinging upon the MILF connection, is weak. But a much larger U.S. counterinsurgency role in the Philippines, and other nations where liberation movements threaten U.S.-backed governments, is altogether likely. In that event, the rhetoric of the "war on terrorism" will be employed against rebels more to the MILF. Are such rebels our enemies? I don't think so. The forum in U.P was attended by the difference sectors of the religious group but it is the American agenda because it silent on this issue. They don’t involve in the GRP and MILF issue .And lot of people in our country bought on this most imprecise and ill-defined of wars in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. Many will continue to support it, at least short term, wherever Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Powell choose to steer it. It should be clear at the opening of this "second front," however, that this is no longer about al-Qaeda, or even about terrorism. It's about the U.S. government's pursuit, on behalf of those it best serves.
2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “the land of Promise”
The difference sector of our churches was continued praying for claim of the Muslim and lumad’s to claim there land but it is very hard because the government they don’t like to become a Autonomous country although: they claim that the Mindanao is for the bangsamoro people. Meaning it is for the Muslim only to protect there on land or the Muslim and lumads they manage there own land to become a promise land but now, the Muslim and lumad’s they have no land to claim but is still fight there right’s even they offer there life for the land, even the family was sacrifice to said land.
3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged me.
The message was challenge me, is the address of last speaker that they give solidarity message to the people who present in that day. The message was very inspiring because they challenge us to support for the peace on Mindanao yes it is our concern now us Filipino people to Pray for the peace in Mindanao to stop war because we have so many civilians was death in that so kailangan na ngayon ang ating pagkakaisa para sa kapayapaan para sa Mindanao at sa ating Bansa.lalo na at marami nang tao ang nadamay sa digmaan na ito mga Bata na walang walay ay nadadamay. And pray also our leader’s to protect life of the masses for the peace.peace.peace for the Mindanao.
4. What does the phrase “one person’s” terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror.
FIGHTING for freedom and freedom of expression on Mindanao is a. Fighting so that people can talk to a soldier like this: No soldier loves war. We are far too close to it to be caught up in the idea of romantic heroism. We do what we do because there are some real bad people out there. There are also good people who need our help.
We are not saints. There will always be someone who spoils it for the rest. Most of what we do for each other. The bigger picture really only snaps into focus in an instant and gets just as quickly buried under the details of operational life. Those brief moments though, the kid smiling as you drive past, seeing a school open for the first time in years, watching the women walking to the markets safe from murder and rape, help you understand why it is sometimes necessary to inflict violence in order to prevent it.
You also gain an understanding of democracies on which this burden falls, not out of an imperialist drive peoples, but to give them the chance to strive for the way of life that people like us take for granted. American’s is the war on terror because it chance again to sale there weapon to our country. I can only hope that you are blown up by a roadside bomb.
5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
I want to integrate in Sunday schools and bible studies the passage: in the book of (Luke 4:18-19) it say’s the lord’s Spirit has come to me because he has chosen me to tell the good news to the poor. The lord has sent me to announce freedom for prisoner’s to give to the blind to free everyone who suffers, and to say this is the year the lord has chosen.

erlinda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
erlinda said...

QUESTIONS FOR REACTION PAPER ON GRP-MILF FORUM

I. The visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises has turned Mindanao into the US armed Forces “new base”in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MNLF. What do you think in the United States agenda in all of these?

---This was the gist of the question raised by Ms. Araullo of BAYAN and answered by Attorney BUAT ang sabi niya dapat na sabihin kay Pres Bush na ang America ang may pananagutan sa naging pasya ng Government to declared against terrorist, sabi nila hindi sila sumasalungat o
lumalaban sa Pamahalaan Pilipinas dahil alam nila bilang mamayang Mindanao
kabilang sila sa may nag mamayari ng Mindanao, bukod sa maysarili silang
Gobyerno at Administration ito iyong pinaglalaban nila may sinabi siya na mga
Treaties at law na maging si Emilio Aguinaldo ay alam ito. Ayon pa rin sa kanila
ang America ay may Sultanate agreement daw sila hindi lalabanan ng mga Sultan o Datu ang America ngunit ang America ay nilabanan sila at iniwan pa sila kumampi sila sa Gobyerno
. I think and believe that the Church can do was to teach, listen, sympathize with the
Moro struggle and crises in this days in claiming their lands but understands also what are the stands of the Government why as if the U.S. was on their sides. Besides of the fact that U.S.A. have a hidden interest to comeback again and build their bases because Philippines was the nearest strategic place to all Asian countries.

3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges.
a) The Law of Expanded Arms 1994 – ipinasok sa Plebisito ngunit nagreklamo ang mga Lubricat, mga Moro riched men & politicians – Mindanao. Kaya sa Ramos Admistration nagtayo sila ng mga Campo sa Abubakar, sa pagtingin ko dito napakarami ang mga influential at rich Muslim. Sana ang mga peasants at mga Lumads na sa Gobyerno na sila umasa, ngunit mayroon MILF ang army o puwersa ng mga Bangsamoro kaya hiwalay sila sa Armed Forces of the Philippines. Ito iyong nakita ng mga Americano marami sa mga rich & politicians ay may sariling army bukod sa proteksyon ng MILF.
b) Sabi nila mayroong massive displacement at annihilations ang buong Mindanao ano kaya ang mga dahilan nito? Bukod sa inaayawan nila ang mga ibinibigay na tulong ng U.S. at Philippine Government dahil ayon sa kanila gusto nila at ayon sa paniniwala nila na may sarili silang Gobyerno. Hindi nila alam marami sa kanila ay ginagamit ng mga kapwa nilang Muslim political rich & influential.
c) Ang mga U.S bases at mga Mining Industries ang epekto nito sa mga kabuhayan at pagkalason pati ang mga environment o kapaligiran. Bakit nangyayari ito dahilan sa mga influential politicians .
Bagamat marami rin sa kanila ang ayaw sa mga kalakaran na nangyayari ay
napipilitan umalis sa Mindanao dahilan sa gulo at awayan sila ay pumupunta sa
Luzon.

4) How do you make sense of this conflict-kapatid laban sa kapatid-in the light of our discussions about solidarity, inter-connectedness (patid ng bituka) and loob?
Para sa aking pananaw ay di ko maunawaan ang mga tumatayong pinuno ng Muslim ngayon tulad ang MILF at pinakikipaglaban nila na ang Pilipino at sa kapwa Pilipino. Dapat sa Church maipahatid at maituro kung bakit ang magkakapatid ay magkasama sama sa bawat pagkain na pumapasok sa ating bituka.. Kung ang bituka ay napatid paano na lang hindi na tulad ng natural na daloy ng pagkain nagkakaroon na nang sagabal o baka magka infection pa Isa pa nakita ko marami sa mga Moro ang maysarili din agenda tulad ng ilan sa mga taga Gobyerno at maging ang bansang America dahilan sa mayamang kabuhayan mula sa kalikasan mayroon ang Lupang Mindanao.

Submitted by: Erlinda Ulanday-Layno
M/Div Senior

tolitz said...

Joselito G. Ibanez
M. Div. Senior
1. Ang Mindanao ay isa lamang sa Asia na may US Military bases na patuloy na pinalalakas ng America. Sapagkat ang Mindanao ay isang magandang lokasyon ayon sa Geographical map ng mundo at very strategic place for Military forces at bansang patuloy na nagnanais na maging malakas ang pwersang pandigma sa pandaigdigang kalagayan at usapin. Ang Mindanao ay malapit lamang sa ilang mga bansang Arabo na nakapaikot sa Mindanao at pangunahing kaaway ng mga mga Kano. Ang Mindanao din ay mayaman sa mga hilaw na mineral at pangunahing kagamit-gamit sa mga pandigma kasangkapan na ngayon ay palihim na nilang minimina at pinagkukunan ng yaman at pang suportang Gamit sa gyera. Ang usapin ng negosasyong ito sa pagitan ng Gobyerno at ng MILF ay upang maimpluwensyahan ng America ang mga pangunahing nilalaman ng kasunduan partikular na sa usapin ng terorismong umiiral at paborable at isa lamang sa mga pangunahin nilang proyekto upang makapaglunsad ng gyera sa mga posibleng laboratoryo ng mga bansa na pangunahin ding kanilang mga kakamping bansa at sumoporta sa terrorism bill na pinaiiral na sa buong mundo.

2. Para sa akin ang Mindanao ay ang mga lupaing naipangako na sa mga dayuhan mamumuhunan katulad ng mga Multi National Companies, sa mga pulitikong patuloy na walang sawang nagpapalawak ng mga lupain sa pamamagitan ng ibat-ibang kaparaanan, ganun din sa mga mayayaman at mga maiimpluwensyang pamilya sa Mindanao. Ang Mindanao ay Isla na kung saan ay palagiang laboratoryo ng ibat-ibang uri ng mga ipapatupad at ipinatutupad na batas sa ating bansa. Ito rin ay lugar na kung saan ang mga mamamayan ay may mataas na pagpapahalaga sa kasarinlan o pagsasarili. Ang Mindanao ay binubuo ng Labing Dalawang tribu na may partikular na pagkakakilanlan, halimbawa; ang lumads ay grupo o tribu na dati-rati ay nakatira sa baybaying lugar ngunit dahil sa mga dayu na dumating sa baybayin at kapatagan ay napilitang tumungo sa mabundok na bahagi ng Mindanao at pangunahing ang ikinabubuhay ay pagsasaka. Ang Maranao naman ay ang grupo ng Muslim na mangangalakal at kalimitang makikita na sa ibat-ibang bahagi ng Pilipinas. Marami parin ang bilang ng mga Muslim ay nagtataguyod sa lupa at sa usapin ng lupa, sila ay may mataas na pagpapahalaga rito dahil dito nagmumula ang kanilang ikinabubuhay. Iilan lamang ang grupo na namumuhunan at pangangalakal ang ikinabubuhay. Ang usapin ng di tamang paggamit ng yaman ng lupa, ganun din ang usapin ng iilang bilang o grupo lamang ang nagpapasasa sa yamang ito ang pangunahing dahilan at maigting na tinutulan ng mga mga kapatid nating Moros.
Ang Simbahan o ang relihiyon at ang ilang mga patakaran ng Gobyerno ang isa sa pangunahing dahilan at rason kung bakit ang Mindanao ay may ganitong usapin. Una ang Church o ang taong simbahan ang pangunahing land grabber sa Mindanao at ang nag mamay ari sa ngayon ng malalawak na lupain dito. Pangalawa ang mga tinatawag nilang “Kristyans” o ang mga settlers sa Mindanao ang pangunahin at Promotor sa Pagpapatitulo ng lupa na dati ay di naging kaparaan ng mga Muslim. Ang Mindanao ay ang mga lupaing naipangko sa mga Pilipinong nagmula sa Visaya at Luzon maging ng mga dayuhang nag mula pa sa ibat-ibang panig ng Mundo at hinimok ng pamahalaan na manirahan sa dito at ngayon ay pangunahing ugat ng kaguluhan. Ang simbahan ay magsasalita sa sarili at magtuturo sa sarili, sa mga kristiyanong mananampalataya ni kristo, na ibalik ang lupa ng mga Muslim na talagang orihinal sa taga Mindanao at totoong may ari ng lupa.
3. a. Ang isyu ng gulo at ang ugat nito ay di malinaw na karamihang Pilipino.
Una ang medya ay kontrolado ang mga balita at pahayag at ayon lamang sa kung ano ang kapahayagan ng AFP spokes person. Di rin nakukunan ng pahayag ang mga panig ng mga nasasangkot sa gulo. Tulad ng mga mamamayan, ng grupong katung-gali ng Gobyerno at ng panig ng mga NGO na maaring mangalap ng impormasyon sa pinangyarihan ng gulo. Ika nga NEWS Blackout.

b. Ang ilantad at ipaunawa sa maraming Pilipino ang totoong isyu at ugat ng kaguluhan sa Mindanao ay ang usapin ng pag mamay ari ng mga malawak lupain ng Muslim. Sino nga ba ang may ari ng lupa ng Mindanao mga dayuhan ba o ang mga Muslim?
Dahil ang Mindanao ay mayaman ang lupain sa mga mineral. Matindi ang pagtutol ng mga Muslim sa usapin ng land exploitation o pag mimina. Ganun din ang isyu ng pag mamay-ari ng mga malalawak na lupain ng mga dayuhang kumpanya at ng mga pulitiko na sya ring maimpluwensya at mayroon ding private army at may kakayahang maglunsad ng kaguluhan dito.

c. Ang lantarang panghihimasok ng Bansang Amerika sa usapin ng gyera sa Mindanao at ang pananatili ng mga baseng militar sa ating bansa. Tama nga ba o hindi? Hindi tama dahil patuloy lamang tayong nagsisilbi paborable sa kanilang interest (ang war field, laboratoryo at merkado ng kanilang imbensyon at di naman para makapag dulot ng katahimikan sa atin bansa.)

4. Ang mga katagang ito ay pagsasalarawan ng dalawang magkaiba ang layunin, konteksto at Interes. Ngunit para sa akin, ang terorista ay ang mga Kano at ang mga sundalong patuloy na pumapatay sa pangunahing nakikipaglaban para sa kapakanan ng lupa at ng mga magsasaka na tanging sa lupa lamang umaasa para mabuhay. Sila ang mga maka bagong bayani o Freedom Fighter mula sa panig ng Mindanao, VISAYA at Luzon.
5. Bilang manggagawa at makabayang anak ng Diyos, ang linguhang pag-aaral ay napaka halaga sa ating mga mananampalataya upang patuloy na kumikilos ayon sa ating mga karanasan at totoong kalagayan.
Sa Aking Lingguhang pag-tuturo at isa sa mga naging topiko ko ay ang kung papaanong maging mabuting tao, at mabuting kapwa tao, na di lamang nakatuon sa pagtuturo kung papaanong maging kristiyano. Naniniwala akong mahalaga ang magkaroon ng maayos na karakter at pagkatao ang bawat indibidwal upang kumilos ito ng tama at makatwiran na di hiwalay sa pang araw-araw nating buhay. Para sa akin ang tamang paghubog at ang tamang konsepto ng pagtrato at pagpapahalaga sa kapwa, at sa lahat ng may buhay ang kabouan ng pagiging tunay na kristiyano. Ito ay inihalaw ko sa aklat ni Isaias 1:1-17.

san pedro sonny t. said...

Sonny T. San Pedro
1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
Answer: Mindanao is undeniably rich in everything, in fact the first time I seen Mindanao with two eyes, I was amazed of the vast coconut tree planted there, I immediately imagine how much money will this coconut can generate. America on the other hand is decreasing in terms of economy, allies and other resources of living. Their aids, project developments are only an investment for larger earnings or interest them wanted to get from Mindanao; it is there in Mindanao where the biggest deposit of Gold and Oil in the Southeast Asia was located. America is known for raping foreign lands including us, America is not really a good country, they always play to be helpful and good just to win and gain innocent people’s natural treasures. For me, Mindanao is America’s next land to devastate for their sake.

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, what do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
Answer: Mindanao has become a land of promise, but this was labeled and offered to be the land of promise not by the Moslems and Lumads, but by the American way back early 1900’s, followed by Manuel Luis M. Quezon and Ramon Magsaysay. This is indeed a painful experience for them. From these experiences, they turn to resist and protect the lands that was originally given to them by Allah or Bathala. I believed in a disturbing God, tyrant and corrupt nation leaders in the history of Judaic and Christian sojourn where first disturb by God, through, most of the time, by sending a prophet to time by time call for the stepping down of the cruel leaders, from this pattern, I believed that our noise of exposing the irregularities by telling the truth from everywhere makes impact for the greedy leaders to be disturb, and when they already disturb on the other hand people will be empowered, and they will be protected by truth as the best defense and offense. The church should be readied as a agent of truth, I believed in Jesus that only by truth, of truth in truth we will be freed, and we will be victorious.
3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
3.1. Protecting the Land- Placing our selves to the situation of our brother Lumads and Muslims, that our property was donated to other people in the absence of our concern, truly, the initial action we will be doing will be closed to what they are doing now. It is so ironic that the people of the land were becoming a foreigner to their own land.
3.2. MORO-MORO- the government of different administration is consistent of having deceitful behavior in dealing all of the issues concerning Mindanao, the MOA is a repetition of the former agreement done between the past presidents and of the freedom fighter leaders.
3.3. Media is always reporting of the incidence of Human Rights violation done by the MILF by unnecessary killings of civilian, this news will actually weaken the support and sympathy of people to MILF, but I believed that this was a dirty tactics by the government, so that they will be able to justify their attacks and offensives.

4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
It is only USA government joyfully names, labeled or classifies peoples of different groups who among them were terrorist. The terrorist that they were talking about are those people or group of people, made resistance to their domination and local interventions.
5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
I do believe that Amos 5:21-24 is a good Biblical passage in studying and discussing the Mindanao crisis. Yahweh instructed or rejected the songs of praises, festivals and worship done by people, in the absence of Justice and peace, Yahweh chooses not to worship and offered Him anything. For Yahweh, peace and Justice is more absolute than of worship and festivals and singing.

joeycunanan said...

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
Hindi naman mahirap unawain ang talagang pakay nila, nais nilang manatili ang kanilang presensiya sa ating bansa o sa ating rehiyon (Timog Silangang Asya), kahit ang malaking katotohanan ay kahinaan ang kanilang lakas militar, at ito’y pinatunayan nila nang maganap ang September 11 attacks sa New York. Bagaman maraming mga espekulasyon na lumabas tungkol dito, ngunit ang malinaw na katotohanan ay hindi na uubrang mandohan o utusan lalo na ng Estados Unidos ang buong mundo na sumunod sa tuwirang pagdidikta nito. Lipas na ang panahon ng US na ang kanyang ”kalaban” (daw) ay ang USSR, pero ngayon napakarami na (Iran, Cuba, North Korea, China). Pinag-aralan kong mabuti ang slides na ginamit nuong August 20 at nakita kong may bahid ng panlilinlang ang ginagawang ”pamamagitan” ng US sa kalakaran ng ating bansa, lalo’t higit sa aspeto ng usaping ”pangkapayapaan” (di-umano) ng GRP at ng MILF. Nakita ko ang isang bahagi ng panghihimasok nila ay pagpapakita ng pagiging kapitalista o oportunista na hindi papayag na malamangan o kaya’y maisahan. Hindi nakakapagtaka na ang mga gamit (used) na armas nila kapag may ganitong Balikatan Exercises ay ”ibinebenta” at hindi ibinibigay na libre sa atin (ano tayo masaya? at ano sila magpapauto?). Ang pagsasagawa ng Balikatan Exercises sa ating bansa ay isang di-tuwirang pagsira ng ating mga likas yaman, gumagamit sila ng mga malalakas ng uri ng pambasabog upang ”di-umano’y” masabok ang kakayahan ng kanilang mga armas. At hindi pa rito nagtatapos ang mahabang makakatotohanang kuwento, ang pagsasanay nila sa mga Pinoy sa paghawak at paggamit ng iba’t ibang uri ng mapamuksang armas ay ”pang-iingit” at ”tinatakaw” (na parang kendi) tayo na bumili ng kanilang produkto.
2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
Hindi rin mahihirapang tumugon ang mga simbahan lalo na kapag mulat ang mga taong nasa loob nito tungkol sa ganitong kalagayan, marami sa atin, miyembro at mga taong simbahan ang hanggang ngayo’y “natutulog sa pansitan”, hindi alam ang sinasabi at ginagawa. Nararapat na maging malinaw sa atin na ang tungkulin ng simbahan ay paglingkuran ang mga tao (tulad ng ginawa ni Kristo) at hindi ang kabaligtaran nito. Maging malinaw rin sa atin na ang isa sa mga tagubilin ni Kristo sa mga sinaunang alagad ”turuang sumunod sa mga itinuro ko sa inyo”. Ang tanong, paano mo mapapasunod ang isang grupo o isang tao sa iyong itinuturo kung mismong ikaw sa iyong sarili ang siyang unang-unang sumusuway nito. ”I like your Christ, but i don’t like your Christians”, ito’y kilalang pananalita ni Mahatma Gandhi na may nakapaloob na katotohanan. Maganda ang mga itinuturo ni Kristo, ngunit ayaw nating pakinggan at sundin. Ang isa pa na nararapat gawin ng simbahan ay imulat (educate) ang mga kaanib nito sa tunay na kalagayan ng ating lipunan, huwag ”binebeybi” at palaging pinapakain ng ”lugaw”, kaya ang ating mga iglesya at mga kaanib ay nagiging ”lampa” lalo na’t ang usapin ay pagiging mabuting tagasunod ni Kristo, ang nararapat na ipakain ay mga matitigas na pagkain na.
3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?

Nakita ko ang malungkot na kalagayan ng Mindanao, na pag-aari ng ilang mga pulitiko at sakim sa lupa, kapangyarihan. Ngunit dito makikita ang katotohanang sinabi ni Macling Dulag na,”how can you own something that outlives you?” at ito’y ang lupa. Hindi na nga marahil matatapos ang usapin tungkol sa lupa lalo na’t maraming tao na ang pinatay, itinaboy at papatayin pa dahil dito. Ang mainam na gawin dito ay ang proper education sa mga kaanib at alam kong may kalakip na panganib ang ganitong layunin, pero alang-alang sa mga taong mahal ko, nakahanda akong gawin ito at ang mga mensahe ay hindi nawawaglit lalo na kapag may gawain o pagtitipon sa loob at labas ng iglesya.
Pangalawa, ang panghihimasok ng US sa ating problema(?) at pagpapadala ng ”mga grupong tutulong” (umano), na kung tutuusin at kung paiiralin ang mga itinuro ni Kristo sa atin (kingdom values) ay hindi magdudulot ng malaking suliranin. Ang kanilang panghihimasok ay nagpapakita na kanilang kawalan ng masasandigan. Ngunit sa nakikita ko, ang US ay walang permanenteng kaibigan, manapa’y marami itong mga kaaway at ginawang kaaway. Bilang isang lingkod ng simbahan, tungkulin ko na maging ipaunawa sa mga kaanib na ang ganitong kalagayan ay hindi dapat katakutan, kundi harapin ng may katatagan.
Pangatlo, ang napakasamang epekto ng digmaan sa mga kababaihan at mga bata. Hindi na rin bago ang ganitong pangyayari, ang Balangiga massacre na naganap noong September 28, 1901 na matapos ang pangyayaring ito ay nas sundan pa nga maraming iba. Sinabi rin ni H.L. Wells (isang correspondent para New York Evening Post) “There is no question that our men do 'shoot niggers' somewhat in the sporting spirit, but that is because war and their environments have rubbed off the thin veneer of civilization… Undoubtedly, they do not regard the shooting of Filipinos just as they would the shooting of white troops. This is partly because they are "only niggers," and partly because they despise them for their treacherous servility… The soldiers feel they are fighting with savages, not with soldiers… “ at ito’y ayaw ko nang mangyari pa sa mga sususnod na panahon. Ito pa ang isang bahagi ng nasabing massacre; “General Smith instructed Major Littleton Waller, the commanding officer of the Marines assigned to cleanup the island of Samar, of the methods he was to employ: "I want no prisoners. I wish you to kill and burn; the more you kill and burn the better it will please me." He directed that Samar be converted into a "howling wilderness." All persons who have not surrendered and were capable of carrying arms were to be shot. Who was capable? Anyone over ten years of age, according to Smith. At this point he became better known as Jake "Howling" Smith.” (source: http://www.broodonline.com)
4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
Madaling unawain ito dahil hindi naman tayo ang nag-imbento ng salitang “terorismo”, “terorista”, kundi ang mga dayuhan. Ang malungkot na katotohanan nito ay natatakot sila sa ginawa nilang “multo”. Terrorist is somebody who uses violence, especially bombing, kidnapping, and assassination, to intimidate others, often for political purposes. Siya raw ay yaong naghahasik ng kaguluhan, pagbobomba, pagpatay (at siymepre may armas). Hindi na rin bago ang ganitong konsepto na ginawa nila sa ibang bahagi ng mundo. Ngunit sa dakong huli, wala namang nangyari. At hanggang ngayon ay hindi pa rin nila ”nahuhuli?” (o baka “hinuhuli”) ang “gumagawa” nito. Tinatawag nilang “terorista” ang isang taong ipinagtatanggol ang kanyang karapatan, lupa at karangalan. Ngunit sino ang may karapatang tawaging ”terorista” ang mga taong napilitang humawak ng armas dahil ito ang hinihingi ng pagkakataon? Sino kaya ang mas nararapat na tawaging ”terorista”? Yaong may hawak ng mga armas at ipinaglalaban ang kanilang karapatan o yaong may hawak ng armas ngunit basta na lamang babarilin ang mga kaklase sa paaralan? Ito ang isang balita kaugnay nito: KNOXVILLE, Tennessee - A student fatally shot a 16-year-old classmate during a dispute Thursday at a Knoxville high school, and a suspect was taken into custody moments later on a nearby street, authorities said. The shooting happened shortly after 8 a.m. at the Central High School cafeteria, Chief Deputy Bill Roehl said. The suspect and victim knew each other, said Knox County School System Superintendent Bill McIntyre. The shooting happened shortly after 8 a.m. at the Central High School cafeteria, Chief Deputy Bill Roehl said. The suspect and victim knew each other, said Knox County School System Superintendent Bill McIntyre. "This wasn't a shooting that was a random act," Roehl said. "It was an individual directing his aggression toward another individual, not the school or the students inside the school." Aug. 21, 2008. sino ngayon ang dapat tawaging “terorista”?
5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
Upang maging epektibo ang pagdadala ng mga usaping ito, nararapat na maging bukas ang mga pag-aaral ng kasulatan, maging sa pagsamba ay nararapat na maging bahagi rin ito, ngunit hindi ito nararapat na maging national situationer ang mga mensahe ng sermon at pag-aaral ng Bibliya. Nararapat din na ang mga mensahe ay napapanahon at kinakailangan, hindi lamang basta dahil gusto ng tagapangaral na magsalita ng gusting marinig ng mga kaanib. Sinasabi sa Micah 6:8 (NRSV) “ he has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” katarungan, hustisya, pagkakapantay-pantay, ang mga ito ang ilan lamang sa mga isinasaad ng kasulatan na nararapat gawin.

Randy Jay Austria said...

Randy Jay T. Austria Prof. Revelation Velunta/ Prof. Lizzette Tapia-Raquel
Master in Divinity Senior Bible Study and Curriculum Development

The GRP-MILF MOA on Ancestral Domain and its Implication to the Peace Process
A reaction paper

In the midst of the struggle of self determination of the Moro people in Mindanao, the government has sent their panel of representatives that embodied the pleasure of Malacañang over Mindanao that pave the way for a peace negotiation between the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP). The struggle for self determination is directly connected with the land whereby the Moro people were losing them as time passed by. Vast of lands were in the hands of the few in the persons of the landlords. The migration of people from different parts of the country to Mindanao displaced the Moslems and confined them only in small areas in Mindanao.
In this emergent need of security raise a liberation movement among the Moslems through different avenues such as the MNLF and MILF in an armed struggle against those who will grab their lands and eventually led to Mindanao insurgency. MILF, previously part of MNLF who were dissatisfied with GRP-MNLF negotiations, continue their struggle for the welfare of the original owners of the land. The Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) on Ancestral Domain, through the initiatives of the MILF is an important move in preventing the Moro people from displacement and secured their lands from land grabbers especially to those multi-national corporations that seem inevitable in grabbing vast portion of lands in Mindanao. Also, this agreement is an act of reclaiming the ancestral land of the Moslems and become a ground for the final peace agreement or comprehensive compact within 15 months after its signing.
However, the memorandum of agreement has raised many questions. First is the presence of the United States in Mindanao that exploring the whole of Mindanao in the guise of missions, United States Institutes of Peace (USIP) as well as the Balikatan exercises. We cannot deny what history is teaching us of the American agenda in the Philippines disguising in different so called humanitarian efforts throughout the American colonization. The abundance of natural resources in Mindanao is worth protecting against foreign exploitations like the United States. The Philippine government is another point of question especially on the real agenda of the Arroyo government in pursuing this peace agreement whereas revealing in the issue of Charter Change. The political will of the government which is always in question must be considered also. The presence of different multi-national corporations, landlords, and land grabbers in Mindanao requires a government that has a political will to ensure the ancestral domain of the Moslems especially that there were different personalities, mostly are owning vast portion of lands which originally the ancestral land of the Moslems. Therefore, there is a need for a vigilant involvement not only among the Moslems but also among Christians and other entities against foreign interventions, the landlords, land grabbers and politicians to prevent disenfranchising the Moslems and eventually to the whole Filipino people that may lead to elevation of hostilities in our country.

grace fe said...

1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?

If i were to answer in the position of the people in Mindanao, isa itong uri ng pagpapakita ng "hunger for power at kasakiman" na kung saan ang bansang may sarili ng identity ay kanilang ginawang base militar. Ang Pilipinas ay maaring tinitingnan parin ng US magpasahanggang ngayon na isang bansang "co-dependent country" sa katulad nilang malakas. Na para bang hindi nito makakayang maka survive hindi lamang sa kabuhayan kundi maging sa digmaan. Actually, napakaraming bansa ang maari nilang pagtayuan ng kanilang military base, i think, mayroong isang mahalagang asset ang Philippines in particular sa Mindanao kung kayat ito ang kanilang pinili. Definitely, these are the hidden "treasures" and richness of the land that will benefit them..

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?

The church leaders in particular should educate its members with regards to the present struggle of these people.Sabihin na natin na malayo tayo sa kanilang kalalagayan, but we must also feel-- maramdaman ang kanilang pakikibaka para sa kanilang matagal ng ninanais. Mayroon din silang mga expectations na hindi na yata makakamit, what we can do is to continue to intervene for them not only thru prayers but we have to do something as well... wag maging tulog ang simbahan sa tunay na kalagayan ng sambayanan at magsama-sama upang makamit natin ang iisang adhikain.


3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?

Una sa lahat ay yung pagsikhay sa tunay na kalayaan. Hindi lang basta isang salita "liberty" kundi paano namumuhay ang isang bansa na malayo sa takot at bantang karahasan ng mga banyaga. Katulad ng paggamit ng Dios kay Moses to led the Israelites sa kanilang freedom, God is also calling us to be a channel of liberation. Marami ngayon ang namumuhay doon sa fear. lalo na yung mga bata pa at nararapat na makaranas ng mapayapang buhay.Mayroong mga Muslim at Lumad na pinipiling iwan ang kanilang homeland at kabuhayan just to be safe at makakita ng lugar na maari silang mamuhay ng payapa. Ito talaga ay isang pakikihamok sa kalayaan. Pangalawa, maging bukas ang diwa at kaisipan natin sa pagpapalakad ng gobyerno. Matutong magtanong at maging mapanuri sa mga bagay na ating nakikita. at Pangatlo, maging matapang at matibay sa isinusulong. Marami parin sa mga kapatid nating Muslim ang nakikipaglaban for their rights and freedom na inaalis na sa kanila. Nakita ko na mabuting ginawa mo ang lahat kaysa pagsisihan mong alam mong may kaya kang gawin na hindi mo ginawa...


4. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?

May mga churches na masyadong kulong ang spiritu sa loob ng Iglesiya, but this reality that is happening in our country must be incorporated in our curriculums. Or atleast before discussing it, let them watch a news/videoclips regarding this issue or use this as an illustration on how the Lord struggled to fight for the poor. I think we can brought up this issue in our Bible studies and seek for their own advocacy and stand so that we could come up with our own statement/stand as a church concerning this realities.. and still responding to the call of God to bring healing, freedom and justice.

joef said...

Joefre G. Landicho

The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
Sagot:
VFA ay tropang militar ng US na kung saan ito ay nagtuturo rin sa mga kasundaluhan natin sa Mindanao upang lalong maging bihasa ang mga Sandatahan ng AFP laban sa di umano'y mga tinuturing na kalaban ng Goberno ang mga terorista mga bandido kasama ang NPA. malinaw na ang pamamalagi ng VFA sa Mindanao isa rin sa patuloy nilang pag alam sa kalagayan ng mga tao doon sa reaksyon nila..ipinapakita rin ang kanilang pagtulong lalo sa paraan ng pagpapaunlad kunwari sa mga publiko pagpapagawa sa mga tulay..pero malinaw na ang pakay ang mayamang lupain ng mga moslem doon ang malaking mina ng langis sa Mindanao at mga likas na kayamanang kanilang pweding bungkalin dahil ang Amerika ay bagsak ang kanilang ekonomiya sa panahon ito. naglilikha rin sila ng sulsol para maglaban ang magkapatid na moslem at kristiano upang makapagbinta sila ng armas. ito marahil ang kanilang agenda.

Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
Sagot:
Ang mindanao ay may anyong matabang lupa at maraming tagong kayamanan.ipinakita rin ang matinding pakikipaglaban ng mga Muslim sa mga dayuhan at hindi nila ito ipinamigay sa mga dayuhan. isang pinikula ang pinamagatang "MIZTAH" gusto kong balikang ang senaryo ng palabas sa pag-uusap ng AFP at Rebelde.sinabi ng isang rebelde sa isang sundalo "Ano ba ang ipinakikipaglaban ninyo dito sa lupain namin?" sabi ng rebelde "Kami'y lumalaban dahil sa dami ng aming dahilan, lumalaban kami dahil sa lupa namin na inaagaw ng mga politiko, mga kapitalista, dati kami ay dito naninirahan sa kapatagan,,ngayon nasa kabundukan na kami naagaw na ang lupa namin." Isang magagawa ng Iglesya natin na sila ay ipanalangin at ang ating pakikiisa sa kanilang kalagayan. at tutulan ang karahasan..maglabas ng isang pahayag na komukundina sa karahasan na nangyayari sa Mindanao..alamin at suriin ang hidwaan..manindigan para sa katotohanan at kapayapaan..manawagan para sa kanilang sariling pagpapasya sa kanilang lupang ninuno (Self-Determination of their Ancestral Domain)

What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
Sagot:3-5
mayaman ang pagpapakita ng tunay na kalagayan sa Mindanao ng mga tagapagsalita lalo na si Almira na leder ng SUARA Bansangmoro. isa sa nakapukaw sa akin ay ang matagal na nilang adhikain ng magkaroon ng kapayapaan sa lugar nila..matagal ng magulo sa Mindanao buhat pa noong lumitaw ako dito sa mundo puro patayan na lang at bombahan sa Mindanao at karahasan sa pagitan ng Gobyerno at Muslim kalimitan ay muslim ang salarin sa mga bombahan.Sinabi ni Rev CM. Joel Tindero "Shalom is a total well-being of a person" mapanghamon ang bawat katagang kanyang binitiwan sa kanyang mensahe sa loob ng salakot na naghahamon sa isang katulad kong manggagawa at isang taong may pakiramdam..halos tumagos ito sa aking buong kamalayan at pagkatao..nabanggit rin niya ang kahalagahan ng buhay ng bawat isa..walang selbi ang mataas na teyolohiya kung ito ay angat sa isang tao at hindi lapat sa karanasan ng mamamayan.hinahamon rin ng tagapagsalita sa porum ang katulad ko na makiisa sa pakikibaka ng mga moro para sa tunay na kapayapaan at wakasan ang tunggalian sa pagitan ng GRP at MILF.
Pangalawa: Ang Lupa na utay-utay na kinukuha sa kanila..sabi ng Apo Macli-ing Dulag "Te Daga Ket Biag" "Ang lupa ay Buhay..kapag kinuha ninyo ang lupa parang kinuha na rin ninyo ang buhay namin" kahit sa Lumang Tipan ang ugat ng tunggalian ay ang lupa..nakikita kung bakit laging may gulo sa Mindanao dahil sa lupa, ang lupa ay isang napakahalaga sa buhay ng tao lalo na kapag ito'y lupang ninuno..ipinakikipaglaban ito kahit umabot sa kamatayan..kasaysayan ang lumikha ng karanasan sa pakikibaka ng mga Pilipino kapag inaagaw ang lupa.sa kasaysayan natin maraming magsasaka ang walang lupa kung kayat walang tunay na kapayapaan.kung kaya't patuloy ang pakikibaka ng mga magsasaka para sa makatarungan lupa. sa bawat bahagi ng buhay ng sambayanan dapat kasali at nararamdaman ito ng katulad ko.
Pangatlo: Katarungan matagal ng ipinagkakait ang katarungan sa mga dukha kahit sa panahon ni Hesus laganap ang kawalan ng katarungan At hindi pantay na pagtingin sa lipunan at katulad rin ngayon ang katarungan ay para sa may mga pera lamang at kayang magbayad sa tagapagtanggol Kawikaan 22:22 huwag pagsamantalahan ang dukha sa harap ng hukuman ni pagmalabisan man" nakakahamon ang bawat detalye kanina sa sermon ni Ptr Joel Tindero..tayo ay dapat maninidigan at magsulong ng katarungan na nakabatay sa hustisya. ito ay hamon sa bawat isang propeta na tahakin ang landas at kabuuang ng pagtatalaga ng sarili at pag aalay ng buhay sa paglilingkod.

Isa sa napakagandang pag usapan sa Sunday School ay ang pagpapalaya ni Yahweh sa bayan ng Israel mula sa pagkaalipin sa Ehipto (Exodo 3:7-12) at pag-uugnay nito sa kasulukuyang nangyayari sa Mindanao at sa ating bansa na kung saang neo-colonial tayo ng AMerika at inuubos na ang ating yaman dahil sa mga mapang aping sistema at kabulukang lider ng bayan.

samy said...

Reaction Paper on GRP-MILF Forum
By Samuel M. Sonio

The UP Forum on the GRP-MILF on Ancestral Domain, held at the UP Hotel last August 20, 2008, raised very important issues, among which are the following that require reaction:

The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP- and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?

I think, the United States agenda is still always around. The unpeace in Mindanao. In order to see the context of the current peace negotiations between GRP and the MILF, it is necessary to trace its historical roots. The common perception or belief is that the “Moro problem” mainly a religious or cultural conflict, i,e., a conflict between the Muslims and Christian in Mindanao. This misconception was cultivated and propagated by the Americans when they colonized the Philippines in the later part of the 19th century, as well as the post WWII Philippines governments. This is obscure and cover up the real roots of the Moro people’s animosity towards the “Christian” and their resentment over what they call “Filipino colonialism”. 1

Historically, conflict on Mindanao will show that the problem is rooted in the fact that the Moro people have lost a large chunk of their land to both foreign and Filipino land grabbers who happen to be non-Muslims or Christians. This disposition was largely done through the series of laws enacted by what they regard as colonial governments---US colonial regime, the Philippines Commonwealth and the Philippine Republic. In a book entitled, Bangsamoro, a Nation Under Endless Tyranny” (1984, updated 1999), Salah Jubair, a member of the MILF Central Committee, refers to these laws as “legalized landgrabbing.” Through these law the Moro people being landless. The fact that both processes failed to take into account the right to self-determination, a principle that the Moro people have been fighting for the first place.

The Philippine government’s program to end the country’s decades-old rebellion problem is being pursued in the midst of “war on terrorism”. The war against terrorism began following President Arroyo’s declaration of support to the US,’ global empire war against terrorism in the aftermath of 9/11 that also led to proclamation of Southeast Asia, including the Philippines, as it “second front”.

The Balikatan Exercises has turned in Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base”. It is significant development, it is increasing interest taken by the US in the GRP-MILF negotiations. The US has repeatedly expressed its intent to “assist” and serve as third party in negotiations and has sent officials such as Ambassador Kenny to explore how the US can participate in the negotiations. But with the US’ propensity for intervention for its own interests, this development is something to worry about. US governments paved the way for the holding of joint war exercises, special training programs, increase military aid as well as intelligence and technical support for the Philippine military’s combat operations.

On the other hand, MILF, has consistently struggled for an independent state of the Bansangmoro people in southern Philippines under the principle of self determination. Its claim for a separate state has deep historical roots of exploitation and oppression of the Moro (or Muslim) people. At the core demands is the ancestral domain.

In the midst on “war on terrorism”, I think US’ substantive agenda for the talks is to impose the rule, its colonial reign, retained some of the feudal and political structure, to ensure that the Philippines become a source of cheap materials and markets of finish products. From then on wards, the Philippines become a closet allies of the US. It parroted every US foreign policy. The Philippine archipelago, consisting of 7,000 islands, is richly endowed with mineral, forest, marine and other natural resources.

Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of promised”. Unfortunately, the years shown that the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed rich. What do you think can the churches do to responds to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?

What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you interest to address these challenges?

As people of faith and conscience, time is now. A call to response for all churches today!
Reclaiming our role. God’s noble purpose in creating humankind is for them to be God’s co-creators and stewards of creations. The responsibility, dominion or power that vested in humankind through the creative power of God not to subdue and exploit the weak and inferior elements but to share the power through giving them an identity and to be the service to the whole creation. All creation is the Lord’s, and we are responsible for the ways in which we use and abuse it. God’s creation are useful to human beings. We should meet these as churches duties through acts of loving care and respect.

Facing Reality. Moslems and Lumads, constitute a growing number of persons. Therefore, the church, in the knowledge that Jesus call us to the blessing of peacemaking and reminds us that the highest law is to love God and neighbor, calls its members

What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you interest to address these challenges?

1. Conduct education and theological reflections. It is important to have a good and critical knowledge of Muslim conflict and its on people lives. Conducting studies and sponsoring or participating in fact-finding mission to asses the situation of the community affected by “war on terrorism” and etc., would be very important. As people of faith, biblical and/or faith reflections to help to remind us of our place in and responsibility for the world. It is high time for the church to reflect more seriously on trade relations and what trade entails and to issue reminders of our being stewards of God’s creation.

2. Make pastoral statements and prophetic pronouncements. The church is called to be a pastor and a prophet, depending on a given situation. Indeed, there is time to comfort the suffering and to disturb the comfortable. In the wake of humans rights violations, militarization, ecological destruction, bio-piracy, etc., that are going on, the church must speak out. Being pastoral and prophetic is expressed in the church’s solidarity of the poor, deprived and oppressed, and to be instrument in raising the voice and aspirations of the least of God’s people.

3. The church must be sanctuary of peace. The church needs to retrieve the image of a sanctuary of peace. But peace is not detached from justice. Therefore, being a sanctuary of “just peace” means actively ensuring that there be economic justice in society. It also means being ready to offer safe spaces to the victims of militarization, forced labor migration, ecological destruction, etc. Providing hope for the victims will be realized if the church will participate actively in reclaiming the lost dignity of the victims.

4. Boycott the products of companies that are guilty of injustice. Aside from exposing the effects of WTO and globalization, concrete action can take place through actively boycotting products of companies that exploit the workers, rob companies of their sovereignty, and abuse environment. These include Nestle, which is guilty of violent dispersal of workers’ strike, harassment and killing of labor leaders, other and utility multinational and transnational corporations that are exploiting their workers and are insensitive to the plight of the community. Know who these are in your own context and share the information and campaign more widely.

How do you make sense of conflict---kapatid laban sa kapatid---in the light of our discussions about solidarity, inter-connectedness (patid ng bituka), and loob?

As people are inter-connected, interdependent and intertwined with the whole creation in a complex web of life, whatever they do to any part will affect themselves and rest of creation. In the sense of conflict ---kapatid laban kapatid---in the light of discussions about solidarity, inter-connectedness or patid ng bituka - it is really significant in thinking and under-standing of the Filipinos, According to Dr. Melanio LaGauardia Aoanan, in his writing “Toward the Making of Filipino Intestinal Theology”, Filipino language and consciousness is definitely more dynamic, concrete but in the Filipino language, the words kapatid/igsoon/kabsat [Tagalog,Cebuano,Ilokano], respectively for brother/sister is “cut-off from my intestine.” In other words, brothers and sisters came from same intestine; they have one and the same intestine. Therefore it is true it follows that they have a very strong connection or relationship and strong solidarity with one another. So the concept of magkakapatid in Filipino could really be solid and strong. There is really strong relationship and camaraderie among Filipinos because they share bituka or intestine.

As inter-faith, this is the paradigm to advocate and the yardstick to use when identifying the manifestations of Creator in our life and in the community we are to serve. In the midst of all this, I think as people of faith, the church can join to continue struggle in campaign by collaborating with civil society groups and directly participating in protest demonstrations or signing appeals and petitions and by sharing information more widely. I believe that this our role is to facilitate the sharing of ongoing efforts of overcoming conflict, violence and violence and promoting peace building especially in Mindanao and in Asia. We clearly understood this role because we know that there are already efforts towards these various communities have undertaken because of the situations of lingering, prolonged, or emerging violence.

We are hoping that this will contribute to the education on and advocacy for war, which is a most needed mark of peace in Mindanao. Since a lot of conflict in Mindanao is rooted in poverty and economic justice, overcoming violence or conflict require our struggle for genuine justice. Now this something that churches, which constitute a minority in Mindanao, cannot be alone. We have to work in solidarity with civil society and other groups.

Resources Used;

1. Constantino, Renato, R.
1975 “The Philippines: A Past Revisited (Pre-Spanish 1941)”, Manila,
Philippines.
2. Moro Christian People’s Alliance
n.d. “Notes on the GRP-MILF Peace Negotiations”

3. National Council of Churches in the Philippines – Program Unit on Faith,
Service. 1999 “FWS Development Mdule”. Quezon City,
Philippines: National Council of Churches in the Philippines

4. Melanio LaGuargia Aoanan,
1996 Teolohiya ng Bituka.” Journal of UTS

5. Velunta, Reeve, et al
2006 Anumang Hiram kung Hindi Masikip ay Maluwang: Ibat-
ibang anyo ng Teolohiyang Pumipiglas.

6. Alejo, Albert E. S.J., TAO PO! TULOY!
1991 “Iang Landas ng Pag-unawa sa Loob ng Tao. Quezon City Ateneo de Manila University, 1991.

Norlie guapo said...

Norlie R. Vilog
M. Div.- Senior

1. The visiting forces agreement is just a way of the United States to work for its own interest for domination and colonization especially in Mindanao. The United States is using our country to expand its power and territory for its own protection and survival. It seems that they like to involve in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF in order for them to become “hero” or “savior” of our country, but on the other hand, they want to get something from our country, maybe our natural resources or whatever else.

2. The term “Land of Promise” is not for the Moslems and Lumads but for the settlers from Luzon and Visayas who are benefited when they migrated in Mindanao. They owned vast of Land which should be owned by the Moslems and Lumads. This is the reason why Moslems and Lumads become victims of Filipino conquerors.
Now, it is very difficult to solve this “struggle about Land” because people governing our country are so oppressive to the Moslems and Lumads who are fighting for their rights of ancestral domain. So it is difficult for us church people to define how to involve ourselves in this situation. But in my opinion, the Church, especially the churches in Mindanao may get involved in the peace process and fight for the rights of the oppressed (Lukan Perspective). And this should be done according to Christian Principles of Social Actions. The Church may help those victims of oppression through social ministries.
3. The concerns challenged me in the forum is all about the Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain. I have three questions about it. Is it still attainable? If the MOA will be signed, how will be the process? And if it is not signed, what will happen? To be honest, it is difficult for me to analyze, reflect and address these questions.

4. I think this is a question of “who are the real terrorists?” The MILF or the AFP or the US’AF? To speak out about what is true is not certain in this situation. It is subjective in nature.

5. Of course, we can integrate this in our Bible Studies if the Text is something in relation or comparison with these issues. Issues about Land most appeared in the Old Testament. At the Book of Joshua, God promised to the Israelites to give Canaan to them, in spite that the Land is already occupied by other tribes. It is good to use this Book in dealing with issues in Mindanao. We can also use I Kings 21:1-24, it is all about Naboth’s Vineyard.

agosto b. dosdosen said...

Reflection in forum on MOA

1.The VFA,more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed forces “new base” in South Esath Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States agenda in all these?

Answer: US are very powerful, voracious nation, they used different kinds of tactics to control and manipulate people for their own profit. The government has given their never-ending service and protects the VFA because they are “tuta” however the hidden and core agenda of evil forces are the expansion of their empire and to capture the fertility of the land. As I know Mindanao are wealthy of gold and smear with oil.

2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise”. Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are bunch of Broken promises. Moreover, most of the islands real state is controlled by transnational’s and landed-rich, what do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?

Answer: This is challenge for the church to rekindle the gift of God that is within us, the Lord has called the church to bear witness to its light, to carry the torch that are darkened with fear and hopelessness. The church should drive away the darkness of despair by the power of the gospel, for as the apostle Paul said, the gospel is the power of God for salvation to those who believe. The church should support and encourage one another.

3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?

Answer: One of the concerns raised during the forum that challenged me most is all about the land; Land that gives life especially for the Mindanaos who are fighting for their right to have their land. I still remember the pharase of MCLING DULAG he said that “Land is Life” Our Moslem brothers and sisters, land is the source of their living, for their survival. They’re not just aiming for this present time but thy’re aiming for the sake of the next generation Moslems.

4. The American government spend $B of weapons and other war machineries. They go for war. The same vision in the Philippines, they spend millions of money for attacking “Rebel group” they neglect the importance of millions wherein million of children, marginalized could get that benefit.

5. For me these kinds of issues are rampant therefore we will integrate these concerns in our SS and BS . The biblical passages that would help to inform in a group discussion is Micah 6:8;”Do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with God.

Justice- to give what is due which means kung saiyo kunin mo kung sa kanya ibigay mo huwag angkinin.

Rose said...

1. In order to take hold of the wealth of Mindanao and stay put the US Military Base and continue to pursue the hidden agenda of GMA.
2. T o realize how the church show its concern for people who are in need.
The church is mission. “The church exists by mission as fire by burning.” Its mission is to tell the world of God’s love and his reconciling act in Jesus Christ. The Lord’s was a healing, teaching, filling, reconciling ministry.
According to Dietrich Bonhoeffer in his Letters from Prison, “To be a Christian…is not to be religious in any particular way, but to be a human…and so participate in the suffering of God in the world…
3. Shalom- means wholeness, harmony and reconciling spirit towards one another.
4. Ones person’s terror is another person’s freedom fighter means that the government is now spending billions of pesos to engage everyone in war. What is more expensive? To sign the MOA or declare war? Many lives already lost and affect Moslems and Christians and combatants as well as civilians.
5. I Thessalonians 5: 14-15 “We urge you, our friends, to warn the idle, encourage, the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. See that no one pays back wrong for wrong, but at all times make it your aim to do good to one another and to all people.

oliver said...

GRP MOA

The UP Forum on the GRP-MILF MOA on Ancestral Domain, held at the UP Hotel on August 20, 2008, raised very important issues, among which are the following that require your reaction:
1. The Visiting Forces Agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises, has turned Mindanao into the US’ Armed Forces “new base” in South East Asia. Questions were raised during the forum on America’s involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF. What do you think is the United States’ agenda in all these?
2. Mindanao has traditionally been called “The Land of Promise.” Unfortunately, the years have shown that what the Moslems and Lumads have experienced are a bunch of broken promises. Moreover, most of the island’s real estate is controlled by trans-nationals and the landed-rich, What do you think can the churches do to respond to the Moslems and Lumads’ clamor for land and liberty?
3. What concerns raised during the forum challenged you? Please share at least three and discuss how you intend to address these challenges?
4. What does the phrase “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” mean in the light of the Mindanao crisis and America’s “War on Terror”?
5. How do we integrate all these concerns in our Sunday schools and Bible studies? Which specific biblical passages would help inform our group discussions?
1. Alam ng mga Americano na ang Pilipinas ay may mabuting lokasyon sa Timog SilanganaAsya na kung saan puwede nilang magamit na tulay sa pakikipagkalakalan at ma-expand nila ang military control nila at iba pa. Sapagkat ito ay kanilang matalinong pagpagagawa ng base na malayo sa kanilang bansa na US, marahil naiisip nila na malayo ang sakaling damage nito na kanilang naiisip na dito lang sa Pilipinas. At isa pa kilala ang US na may hidden agenda sila na kunwaring may ipapatayo sila ng base ay yon pala ay may nakita silang ‘oil’ na puwede nilang masarile at makontrol.

Ang Balikatan exercise sa Mindanao ay isa lamang props o palabas ng US upang mapalawak nila ang kanilang kampanya sa mga terorista na inaakala nila ay mayroon dun sa Mindano, isa pa ito ay isang tulay na pagsasanay sa kanilang mga sundalo sapagkat ang Plilipinas ay may tropical na klima na puwede nilang magamit sa mga bansa na kagaya nating panahon at isa pa masubok nila ang ibat-ibang inbention, stratehiya sa pakikipagcombat. Maari din nilang maisip na nandito sa mga muslim ang mga nagtatagong mga terorista sapagkat madaling makapasok ang mga banyaga dito sa atin sapagkat sa lawak n gating bansa na hindi maabot ng Coastguard o Immigration na puwede na silang magbarko o airplane man lamang. Sa parti ng nogasayon sa mga MILF at GRP panel ay din a kailangan mamagitan ng US sapagkat ating bansa ito, kailangan nating iresolba natin ito na walang string attached ang US. Ang mga Muslim ay pinagkaitan ng kanilang sariling karapatan sa pagmamay-ari ng lupa ng kanilang ninuno biktima sila ng mapagsamantalng mayayaman at misyong gobyerno na mapan-api. Kaya siguro ang mga Cano ay isang ‘chance’ nila ito sa di mawaring motibo. Para sa akin ay sobra na ang pakikialam ng US baka sa huli ay may kapalit na kanilang inaasahan na ibigay ng Pilipinas sa huli.

2. Sa pansamantala siguro ang simbahan ay magamit bilang sanctuaryo ng mga naiipit na mga Muslim sa sigalot ng ating gobyerno at mga MILF sa kanilang di pagkakaunawaan. At puwedeng makibahagi ang simbahan sa mga injustices na nanangyayari sa mga kapatid nating mga muslim. Puwede tayong humingi ng tulong sa mga congressman at mga sinador na may lingap sa mga Muslim. Ang MOA ay titgnan ang legalities nya at huwag tumahimik ang simbahan tungkol ditto, maaring magmonitor sa mga nagawang kasunduan at maturuan ang mga kapatid nating Muslim na bukas sa maga concern na Kristiyano. Ang terminong “land of promise” ay parating nakaugnay sa Mindano sapagkat mayaman ang lupain dun at malayo dati sa mga mananakop na mapagsamantalang mga mayayamang kristyano. May magandang lokasyon at self sufficient na natural sa resources na puweding masuplayan ang buong Pilipinas. At hindi lingid sa atin ang lupain ng mga Bangsamoro or the Land of the Muslim ay kaparti sila. Na simulate simula pa ay nanduon na ang kanilang mga ninuno na namumuhay at ito rin ang kanilang ipinapaglaban mapasakanila muli ang ninakaw na lupa ng mga mayayaman at mapagsamantalang nasa may kapangyarihan. Maging ang MOA na ginawa ay mas fabor sa GRP at hindi naayon sa constitusyon.





3. 1) Ang Lupa ay pag-aari ng kanilang ninunong Muslim “Ancestral Domain”. Ito ay
kanilang buhay na nuon
pang una kaya dapat may justice na mangyayari at huwag mahulog lamang sa mga motibong mga mayayaman at mapagsamantalng nasa Gobyerno.

2) Pakikibahagi ng US. Ang gobyerno ng Pilipinas ay mahiya sana sa kanyang sarile na kailangan pang humingi ng tulong upang maresolve ang internal na problema. Ang balikatan ay itigil na sana duon sa Mindanao sapagkat minsan may natatamaang ligaw na bala, minsan nadadamay pa ang mga walng malay na Muslim at mga sibilyan. Matakot sana tayo baka sa kalaunan ay buweltahan tayo ng mga kaaway ng mga US sapagkat tayo’y nakikibahagi at host sa kanilang balikatan. At sa huli huwag na nating payagan na gamitin ang kanilang base ditto sa Pilipinas matakot na tayo sa negatibong efecto nunon sa atin.

3) Federalisasyon ‘daw’ ang susi ng ito upang maresolve ng Gobyerno and di-pagkakaunawaan sa Mindano. Ito ay malayong mangyari sa ating bansa sapagkat ito ngang klase ng Gobyerno nating hin pa nya maresolve ant sigalot sa Mindanao. Federalisayon pa kaya? At kung maipasa ito sa congresso at senado matagal pa nating maisakatuparan ang maganda atmailinis na paggogobeyerno. Ang solusyon ay ang pagpapatupad ng Agrarian Reform sa Mindano ay maiibsan ang pagtatangkilik sa mga lupa ng mga Muslim at maisauli ang mga ito. Dapat paigtingin ang kompanya ng Gobyerno sa Ancestral Domain ng mga Muslim, kung sa kanila ang lupa dapat ibigay ang mga ito pero dapat mapasailalim pa rin sa patakaran ng gobyerno ng Pilipinas.

4. The phrase talks about a person being viewed in his/her conviction and perspective at
two different and opposing perspectives. Minsan ang ating pananaw ay napakakomplikado na, minsan kung anu ang conviction natin ito na ang nangingibabaw at hindi na ang gusto ng karamihan. At minsan gaya-gaya na tayo sa mga nang-alipin sa atin. Sa pakikipaglaban ng US sa mga terorista ay dapat talgang suportahn n gating Gobyerno pero sana huwag ng pumunta ang US ditto sa Pilipinas kasi ito ay bansa natin. Minsan nasasabi natin ang pakikibahagi ng US sa atin ay grasya: 1. may maibibgay ang US, 2. makakatulong ang kanilang Militar sa peace n gating bansa ngunit kung minsan ito ay nagging sanhi ng sigalot sa mismong kalayaan ng isang Filipino at pati sa tingin ng MORO. And dalwang magkalabang ideas ay dapat na matimbang ito ng husto ng mga matatalinong may alam sa batas at dapat maisip nila ang pangkalahatan hindi ang pansariling motibo o promosyon.

5. Sa Sunday school classes po natin ay nangunguna sa paghubog ng ating mga meyembro kaya puwede natin bigyan diin ang subject na “Social Change, love to our Ancestors, Government”. Sapagkat ito ay lugar ng pag-aaral, pagtheologize, at mareflect ang faith nya sa economic, political and social environment na kung sya kabilang. Ang simbahan din ay maging tapat sa pagkatawag nya na maihatid ang mga tao sa pagpapalagnap ng pag-ibig, katwiran at kaligtasan ng sankatauhan. Sa Gobeyerno ay dapat tayong magbigay galang sa kabila ng mga pagkukulang nito sapagkat ito’y itinakda ng Dios (Rom 13:1). Pero maging agent tayo ng transformasyon at katwiran at kabanalan. Sa Ancestral Domain ng mga Muslim o MILF, sa 1 Hari 21 ating maalala ang kwento ni Naboth at Haring Ahab, na nung matanaw at magustuhan ni Jezebeel ang magandang ubasan ni Naboth ay ninais na sabihin sa hari upang mapasakanya ang lupain subalit ayaw ibigay ni Naboth sa hari sapagkat ito ay galing sa kanyang mga ninuno. Puwede nating gawing refelection at makuha ang mga saloobinng mga meyembro natin sa Sunday School or Bible Study.

Elsie Aquino said...

The visiting forces agreement, more specifically the Balikatan Exercises has turned Mindanao into the US Armed Forces “New Base” in South East Asia, Questioned were raised during the Forum on Americas involvement in the negotiations between the GRP and the MILF, What do you think is the United States Agenda in all these.

Our country was invaded by different foreign nation, we fought to regained freedom, yes, we achieved it, but until now we lived in the shadow of foreign invaders. The freedom we have now cannot be said a genuine freedom, because in thought in deeds and, in our daily chores colonialism were almost present. We are known to be hospitable, accommodating every foreign friend, without questioning their motives and interest in our land, we are friendly, and one thing more our country is rich in natural resources. All these characteristic of the country awaken and attract the interest of foreigners, and one of them is our good friend “sabi” the American. They are known to be rich, powerful, influential country, advanced in technologies, factory of weapon for war, very much well known in resolving conflicts. Though the American bases were not present here, they love the place for training field and balikatan exercises is one activity they are doing.
WE cannot deny the fact, that in our country, there are many terrorist groups existing, like Abbu Sayyaf, MILF, MNLF, NPA that cause trouble and conflict in the government and community, like what is happening now in Mindanao, the fighting between Muslims group and military group, the reason they claimed the place of Mindanao to be a separated nation. , the problem is within the citizen of the country and the government but in many negotiations American‘s are present. The question arises is what are this people agenda in doing all of these. Upon observation, they tried to help resolve the problem, do exercises among military group to be more better enforcer of the law ,be an expert bomb detector, to be more advance in technique and strategies with regards to war. If I will be asked if there presence is effective, my answer is no, it is more getting worst, because I believe if involved is the same race and the problem is territorial, we the citizens of the country should be the one to work for it, We know the ability of our country men, many brilliant Filipino were born today, we could make it besides this is our fight. One thing more I remember is the natural resources of the country could it be also their interest. All this is my own speculation, observation, and opinion.

Marilyn Manson said...

America is preparing for a big war against China because China now created a big statement that they will be the next superpower in the world. That is my personal assessment. And in order for America to have control on the surroundings of China, they need to put up Base and revive bases also. Pinasok lang nila ang issue ng mga Moro para mapagtakpan talaga ang kanilang totoong motibo bakit sila nandoon.
Church leader should be vocal in their quest for justice for this Moro and Lumads. Vocal to the public and to the Government the need for an immediate change and wake in a reality that these lands should be given to the natives of the land.
A. Unending dispute for the land. The Government should give what is really due to the natives.
B. Land of the Moros should be given to the Moros.
C. The Heavy traffic. Pinoys’ are really undisciplined race.
MILF are heroes for the Moros and Lumads while for Government people and US Armies, they are terrorist.
Exodus event. The liberation of the Israelites from being slaves and captives of Egypt.