The statement may come as a disappointment to some, especially those who want a direct call for the president to resign. It may come as a relief to the president and her men, who obviously have been panicky since the scandal surfaced. But like anything else, we see things according to our own perspective - and interests.
It may not call for the president's resignation, but it definitely does not condone corruption and incompetence in the government.
For every Christian, indeed for every Filipino, it is to be taken as it is - a moral guidance from our Bishops to seek the truth and restore integrity in these times of restlessness and confusion.
The Bishops clarify what they have called for, also through the CBCP President - communal action:
For the long term we reiterate our call for “circles of discernment” at the grassroots level, in our parishes, Basic Ecclesial Communities, recognized lay organizations and movements, religious institutions, schools, seminaries and universities. It is through internal conversion into the maturity of Christ through communal and prayerful discernment and action that the roots of corruption are discovered and destroyed. We believe that such communal action will perpetuate at the grassroots level the spirit of People Power so brilliantly demonstrated to the world at EDSA I. It is People Power with a difference. From the grassroots will come out a culture of truth and integrity we so deeply seek and build.True enough, what we need is the formation of our consciences - as individuals, as communities, as a Church, as a nation. A regime change would not necessarily result to the end of the systemic ills of corruption and selfish exercise of power, and the cultural imbalances in politics and social life. What is needed is a real change of heart - attitudes, paradigms, directions. One avenue is communal discernment towards formation of consciences towards liberation from the enslaving structures of political and cultural imbalance - like what Freire says of education - a practice of freedom, the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world.
We look forward to our own Archdiocese' concrete response to the CBCP's moral guidance.