Religious issues may play a big role in the November election of a president in the Philippine Republic, a country officially dedicated to the Order of the Sacred Heart a few months before the airplane crash in which President Ramon Magsaysay was killed.
Presidential aspirant Claro M. Recto is opposed by Catholics and backed by Protestant leaders.
The former Vice President, Carlos P. Garcia, who assumed duties of the high office shortly after the crash, is a graduate of Silliman University, a Presbyterian institution in Manila. He is a Catholic, however, as was his predecessor.
Secretary of Education Hernandez, strongly Catholic, also perished in the crash, which took 24 lives. Undersecretary of Education Martin Aguilar Jr., a logical choice for the vacant position, is a Protestant, and church observers are intensely interested in seeing who will get the key post.
President Magsaysay was a popular figure among both Catholics and Protestants. Nearly a half-million persons swarmed around Malacanan Palace when the body of the 49-year-old chief executive was brought from the Cebu Island mountainside.
“His fight against communism as one of democracy’s staunchest champions …,” said Philippine Ambassador to the United States, Carlos P. Romulo.
‘The Only Weapon’
Thirty missionaries, representing 24 different mission groups, agreed on the following statement of faith before issuing invitations to all missionaries in Japan for the 1959 Protestant Centennial Conference:
“We believe in the Bible as the fully inspired, infallible Word of God, the only rule of faith and practice.”
Words Of Warning
Christians in China who are permitted to communicate with the West are members of “show case” churches maintained by communists for ...1
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