The following is a transcript of the Homily delivered by His Eminence Gaudencio B. Cardinal Rosales during the Prayer Rally held at the Luneta, December 17, 2006.
As the immediate expectation to the Messiah, people expecting were asking: "What shall we do? Are you Jesus, the Christ?"
On what must be done, the Baptist answered: "Be honest and just. Do not extort. Share what you have."
The honesty and humility of the Baptist's answers reveal the truth. He is not Jesus Christ, and that Christ is far greater than he is. And he is completely not worthy to even loosen the strap of Jesus' sandals.
When people want to see Christ, they must be ready to meet him; that is truth.
If they want to be guided by Him, they must be willing to be taught by Him; that is humility.
If there is giftedness in one's life, he/she must live giving thanks and must include others within his/her world of gifts; that is gratitude.
There are still many things to thank God for when we look at our lives, just as there are yet other needs to pray to God for help when we look at our poverty.
Foremost is our need for knowing and following the path that leads to truth, that is Jesus, and our need for unity that He assures us as ours to obtain if we have the humility to make a sacrifice out of our own personal or party ambitions.
The only valid equation a people can make in people and nation-building is the sacrifice that equals the good of everyone, especially the many who are poor in our midst.
After so many exchanges of ideas and debates, we are still looking for a formula. What are the laws that guide us? What are the words we should live by?
Again, it is the wish of many of us that the body to deliberate and re-architect the "Words of Law" by which we, the people, will rule and be ruled, and through which our people will be inspired and will live by, should be a body of men and women specially voted on as a Constitutional Convention who will re-architect our basic laws.
Change must come! Only dead men can no longer change.
There must also be a reform in the Commission entrusted with elections.
If in our lifetime, this change should come, let it all begin with the unity of our people. This means everyone is subject and object of reform.
Let this be our collective prayer today.
Let there be peace among a unified Filipino people.
GAUDENCIO B. CARDINAL ROSALES
Archbishop of Manila
17 December 2006