By Steve Angeles, ABS-CBN North America Bureau
Sept. 23, 2014
LOS ANGELES – Filipino Catholics have been treated to a delightful sight for the past few weeks as they come out of mass — a jeepney with a cause.
The Pilipino Workers Center which owns and operates the Jeep ng Bayan has been visiting churches, mobilizing it as a vehicle for change by spreading messages to the Filipino community about current issues and services.
“We call it the Jeep ng Bayan and our theme really is driving Filipino empowerment so that as a whole our community can come together, have a stronger voice in voting, and a stronger voice just by acting together so that we can address all of the issues that we have in our community,” said PWC Executive Director Aqui Soriano Versoza.
The Filipino Ministry of Los Angeles has hopped along for the ride as they reach out to their communities prior to the 2nd National Assembly of Filipino Priests.
Some 800 Filipino priests including the highest ranking Filipino American clergyman Bishop Oscar Solis will join Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle for a three-day gathering in Orlando, Fla. in November.
The assembly will tackle issues that affect Filipino priests as well as groom future church leaders, and address the needs of their parishioners.
“Sometimes kawawa ng mga kababayan natin here and the Philippines that they are being abused at times and they don’t have the voice to speak for their own selves. So we are the voice as Christians and followers of Christ as Christ speaks for those who are less fortunate, those who are being abused. We need to speak for them and speak for the voice of the voiceless people so we can really give them the human dignity that they deserve as human beings and as people of God,” said Immaculate Heart of Mary Pastor Fr. Larry Revilla.
But Versoza admits there is a bit of disappointment this week.
This week was the original date for President Barack Obama to announce executive orders that would address immigration reform.
“He had promised us by the end of September that he would have he would take executive action but now he’s pushing back to after the election. So were very disappointed about that. But at the same time were still continuing to make sure he does actually take executive action to provide our relief,” she explained.