Opinion: Religious Preachers as Fakes and Swindlers
PEOPLE WILL TALK BEHIND PACQUIAO’S BACK IF HE IS NOT CAREFUL. The realist, Negros Occidental artist now of the country, Nunelucio Alvarado says one must beable to distinguish performers from artists, just as media practitioners should be defined from what journalists are. And journalists could be newspaper or print reporters, broadcasters and commentators and the like. What we are saying is that like artists in the real sense of the word, journalists go one step beyond. We believe that ajournalist primarily source his occupation from what he does as a reporter employed in a media outlet or who is working in a media outlet. What does one call a man who is a public official then, or a businessman who buys blocktime in a radio station or in a cable television program, but that is not his main source of livelihood. He would, to our mind, be a media practitioner but not a journalist. Being a journalist is one of practice, culture, attitude and commitment. That is how we view it.
This is similar to Nunelucio Alvarado’s definition of an artist, who first becomes a performer before he becomes an artist, a complete personality like Nora Aunor for one, a singer who can write songs and not only sings, one who has risen to the status of a singer, songwriter combined and who not only sings.
WHY ARE WE SAYING THIS? We are saying this because we remember Manny Pacquiao and his becoming a religious man all of a sudden. If Manny is intent on using religion to discipline himself, he need not become a preacher or a pastor of any religious denomination or sect.
But let us admit that he is sincere and that he has found out that God had suddenly became his calling. We can only judge him by what we have seen in television footages and our analysis is that he has become a swindler or a fake just like some people who overdo their act and who use God or Jesus Christ to conveniently use as a shield to divert people’s attention from one shenanigan.
MANNY LOOKS AND SOUNDS CHEAP. With everything that he does now, even probably going to the john (British slang) and preaching to the viruses and the germs which abound there, Manny has, in fact taken his newfound beliefs to extremes. In this light, we were reminded of a story which we were told by a physician, a real doctor in a talk about three years ago in which he related his sad, sorrowful and near-tragic experiences after having decided to join a religious cult or even a Protestant about three years ago.
The doctor who is now back in the province after barely escaping with his life and that of his family, personally narrated to us that representatives of the pastor-cum-preacher-religious man, well-known and who has a cable TV program exuding pose, calm and confidence and utmost belief in God, had convinced him that he had nofuture on earth, but had one in Davao where he would be useful serving as doctor in medical missions the religious sect would undertake.
He sold everything, his house, car, convinced his children mostly girls to forego their studies and for all of them to go to a journey which would all later take them to heaven.
In short, this is what happened: The doctor, indeed, undertook his assigned tasks the wife, undertaking similar obligations, the children becoming members of the pastor’s choir, which if one sees them on television, it would prod him to comment that, indeed, they are all good-looking and really Godly because they always wear white dresses.
But there were signs that the religious sect was not into heavenly activities. The good doctor, who stayed for a short while in Manila found out that the sect was fielding "beggars" distributed in various assigned postings in Metro Manila. Every afternoon, they would be collected by and constituted a busful, then their earnings were counted and it amounted to quite a pretty penny.
But the crunch came when a daughter of his, a member of the religious sect’s choir and the choir itself, went on a tour of a nearby Asian country and one day while she slept inside their hotel room, the pastor entered and using his convincing skills told her if she would like the "spirit of God" to come into her and be full it.
Then he moved to embrace her and fondle her. She kicked him and fled from the room. Afterwards, the doctor and his family knew their lives were in danger. In short, they found ways of returning home and escaping from the hell of "fire and brimstone."
They barely made it back to Bacolod but are now penniless and problematic. Now, no matter what probably Manny Pacquiao says, the family’s beliefs have all but been shattered. But of course, we are not indicting all sects and religions. We are but pinpointing a specific issue.
But, of course, tell you me. Of course, what I am writing about is true.*