Pinoys in Fatima pray for end to drug killings

Pinoys in Fatima pray for end to drug killings

Hundreds of pilgrims from all over the world still flock to the Santuário de Fátima in Portugal days after the celebration of the centennial of the Marian apparitions. MICHAL JANCZEWSKI

FATIMA, Portugal – Days after the celebration of the centennial of the Marian apparitions in this town to three shepherd children in 1917, Filipino pilgrims share that peace in the Philippines and guidance for President Rodrigo Duterte are top on their prayer list.

For Alma, a Filipino based in San Francisco City in the U.S., the drug-related killings in the country is a cause for alarm.

“Other places are quiet but it’s still chaotic because many are getting killed. Everyday, there are killings…The drug addicts, they need rehabilitation,” added Alma, who was in the famous Marian pilgrimage site on May 16.

According to Alma, Duterte’s approach to the illegal drug crisis is mistaken. “Drug addicts need rehabilitation because it’s a sickness. They are like the alcoholics who drink…Of course, it’s hard to rehabilitate [them], especially the hardcore [ones.]

For Constance Mallari – Elbertse, the “bad news” she hears about the Philippines inspired her to pray that Duterte be enlightened “through the intercession of Mother Mary.”

“I’ve heard he curses even the Pope,” added Elbertse, who is married to a Dutch national and has lived in the Netherlands for decades.

She also expressed hope that Duterte will focus instead on the rehabilitation of drug addicts. “They are sick. They are not criminals.”

“[I prayed] of course for our government that hopefully, our president will be successful so that it will be peaceful [in the country],” said Angelina Ocampo of Pampanga who visited the Fatima shrine on Tuesday while on a trip outside the country to visit her son, who lives in the Netherlands.

Aside from praying for the government, she also said she asked for the intercession of Our Lady of Fatima for her family, specifically a daughter who is experiencing some personal problems. CBCPNews