Posts Tagged ‘Maundy Thursday’

Apparently skirting the no campaign rule on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday, candidates made their presence felt on Twitter and Facebook, which have yet to be regulated by the Commission on Elections.

In Bataan, a candidate for councilor, Jules Moncupa, posted what appeared to be his campaign material on his Facebook account and asked his Facebook friends to “share” it.

Screengrab from Facebook.

“GAME NA! … Please Share, my friends. Thanks. :-).” he posted.

In his photo, Moncupa described himself as “Kaibigan ng Bayan (everyone’s friend)” and “outstanding councilor of Bataan.” His ballot number, 16, was also placed near his name.

The photo’s time stamp on Facebook indicated it was posted at 3:14 a.m., March 29.

The campaign period for local candidates was supposed to start today but since it is a Good Friday, it can only start on March 30, Black Saturday.

Under Republic Act 7166, the campaign period may exclude the day before Election Day, the day of the election itself, Maundy Thursday, and Good Friday.

Comelec Resolution 9385, which lists the calendar of activities for the campaign period, also notes that campaigning on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday is prohibited.

Some national candidates merely posted Holy Week and vacation-related messages on their Twitter account while others plugged online articles where they were mentioned, such as GMA News Online’s Isyu ng Bayan matrix.

But other candidates posted rants while there were also candidates who plugged their party’s proclamation rally. Administration’s Team PNoy posted some photos of sorties and election initiatives, including the 7-11 cup program.

Screengrab from Twitter.

Violation?

In a text message to GMA News Online, Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said he cannot call the posts violations of election rules just as yet but he will let the Comelec law department evaluate them.

“Hindi kasi natin nire-regulate ang Facebook e. So I hesitate to call that a violation. Pwede natin ipa-evaluate sa law department namin,” he said.

“Comelec generally does not monitor Twitter and Facebook postings except in relation to campaign spending and possible vote-buying schemes,” Jimenez added.

In Resolution 9615, the poll body regulates online campaign propaganda such as pop-ups, rectangles, banners, buttons and skyscrapers except on social networking sites.

Poll chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. earlier said they will issue clearer guidelines on social networking sites during the campaign period after they checked how politicians use the platform.

“This is new, this is something innovative, itong social media. Kaya dapat titingnan muna natin, hindi pwedeng detalye agad. We will see how effective it is during the start of the campaign period,” Brillantes said. —KG, GMA News

Pope Francis continued his gleeful abandonment of tradition by washing the feet of a young Muslim woman prisoner in an unprecedented twist on the Holy Thursday tradition.

While popes have for centuries washed the feet of the faithful on the day before Good Friday, never before had a pontiff washed the feet of a woman. That one of the female inmates at the prison in Rome was also a Serbian Muslim was also a break with tradition.

“There is no better way to show his service for the smallest, for the least fortunate,” said Gaetano Greco, a local chaplain.

PopePope Francis kissing the feet of a young offender

Pope Francis washed the feet of 12 inmates aged 14 to 21, among them the two women, the second of whom was an Italian Catholic. Mr Greco said he hoped the ritual would be “a positive sign in their lives”.

Catholic traditionalists are likely to be riled by the inclusion of women in the ceremony because of the belief that all of Jesus’ disciples were male.

The pontiff, who has largely disregarded protocol since his election earlier this month, urged his fellow clerics before the ceremony to prioritise the poor.

“We need to go out to the outskirts where there is suffering, bloodshed, blindness that longs for sight, and prisoners in thrall to many evil masters,” he said at a mass in St Peter’s Basilica.

“It is not in soul-searching or constant introspection that we encounter the Lord.”

Francis, the first leader of the Catholic Church from Latin America, led a mass with a mixed group of young offenders at the Casal del Marmo prison outside of Rome.

The 76-year-old, who was archbishop of Buenos Aires until chosen as pope, has already made a name for himself as a champion of the disadvantaged. In his homeland of Argentina he was known for his strong social advocacy, working in slums and shunning the lavish lifestyle adopted by some senior clerics. He lived in a small flat near the cathedral, flew to the Rome conclave in economy class, and chose to travel with his fellow cardinals by minibus rather than in the papal limousine.

Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio – as Pope Francis was previously known – had already washed and kissed the feet of women in past ceremonies in Argentinian jails, hospitals and old people’s homes, including pregnant mothers and AIDS patients.

Before performing the traditional feet washing, in his first general audience on Wednesday, Francis called on the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics to reach out to “lost sheep” over the coming days.

“Holy Week challenges us to step outside ourselves so as to attend to the needs of others: those who long for a sympathetic ear, those in need of comfort or help,” Francis told thousands of faithful gathered in St Peter’s Square.

On Good Friday, Francis will recite the Passion of Christ – the story of the last hours of Jesus’s life – in St Peter’s Basilica, before presiding over the Via Crucis ceremony by the Colosseum, where thousands of Christians are believed to have been martyred in Roman times.

While last year his predecessor, 85-year-old Pope Benedict, presided over celebrations from under a canopy next to the Colosseum, Francis is expected to take part in the procession and even carry the wooden cross on his shoulder for part of the way.

On Saturday, the pontiff will take part in an evening Easter vigil in St Peter’s Basilica, and on Easter Sunday the he will celebrate Easter mass in front of tens of thousands of pilgrims in St Peter’s Square and then pronounce the traditional “Urbi et Orbi” blessing to Rome and the world.

Also on Thursday, the Pope made his first appointment of a bishop, naming Mario Poli, 66, to succeed him as archbishop of Buenos Aires and the top churchman in Argentina.

Francis also put his first people on the path to sainthood, unveiling a list of 63 people including victims of the Spanish Civil War, Nazism and Communism. The largest number are considered martyrs of faith killed during the 1931-45 conflict in Spain.