The Christians for National Liberation unite with all revolutionary forces under the leadership of the Communist Party of the Philippines in commemorating the 1986 People Power Revolution.

We hail with red salute all heroes and martyrs of the Edsa uprising whose blood and struggle permeated into national consciousness and collective pursuit for genuine democracy, social justice and freedom.

We especially extol church martyrs (names), who break the barriers of church conservatism and counter-revisionist tendencies and petty-bourgeoisie tendencies. They who helped advanced the journey of the peasants and workers for genuine land reform and better labor conditions. Clergy, religious, lay workers who with their fear and biases, opted to join the broadest united front in putting a stop to a decadent Marcos dictatorship. We saw committed church people who refused to be cowed into silence, defend human rights and respond to the needs of the least of their brethren.

Thirty-three years after, we look back and draw lessons as we are (yet) again confronted with another dictatorship represented by US-Duterte regime. The apparent success in the anti-dictatorship campaigns and mobilisations that draw even the biggest number and names in the Church was not complemented by a systemic study off correct revolutionary principles. Analysis of the Marcos regime was limited to unmasking its fascist character.

Many Cnl members were not equipped with a correct understanding of the nature and characteristics of a semi – colonial, semi-feudal society. When Marcos was removed from power and Cory was installed as new president through people power, many were led to believe that social emancipation could indeed be achieved through peaceful means especially because “democratic space” was restored.

Many church people believed that it was no longer necessary to attain national liberation and social emancipation. The Cory mystique was further reinforced by the concept of popular democracy peddled by CNL leadership that has grave consequences to the organization.

The misreadings of the times as well as the reactionary character of the church has continue to challenge church people and progressive individuals to “follow Christ and serve the people”.

Since Cory time, the systemic conditions of a backward Philippines that continue to bleed dry peasants and workers is as evident today as it was during Marcos’ time. Despite the claim of infrastructure developments and good economic performance, it remains largely beneficial to the ruling elite class with old oligarchs, capitalists and bureaucrats siphoning huge profits and cornering public funds.

The three years of US-Duterte regime betray the irrevocable unholy alliance of neo-Liberal policies clearly operational under his leadership. No amount of populist stance can sustain a decadent system that has already proven precursor to a people’s revolution.

In recent days, we witness church people’s mobilisation against anti-poor policies and rampant killings. We welcome the much anticipated stand of the Church hierarchy owing up to their weaknesses but never abdicating their responsibility to provide a moral enlightenment under a de facto martial law.

The toiling masses call on the Church and church people to sustain their stand against rampant Violations of rights and dignity, curtailment of freedoms and social injustices.

In anticipation of a new day, Christians for National Liberation call on the broadest number of church people to join in the collective effort of putting an end to class violence and injustices. We shall draw motivations from sharp and critical analysis of Churches and their leadership. Let us work without ceasing by exposing the corrupt, inhumane and despot regime. Let us go out in numbers, unite under the broadest alliance and put an end to Duterte’s draconian rule. Let us help build a government that truly represents the people.