CONSECRATE THEM IN THE TRUTH
A Pastoral Exhortation Against Fake News
Brothers and sisters in Christ:
A key dimension of Jesus’ mission was to preach the truth, and in His high priestly prayer, He prayed that His disciples might be consecrated in the truth. We, the Filipino nation, are part of the community of disciples for whom He prayed. At his trial, the question of truth figured prominently. “What is truth?” asked a bewildered Pilate, because he failed to recognize in Jesus, THE TRUTH!
So it is that the Christian cannot be part of falsehood, deceit and lies. A fact is anything that is or that happens. If one man kills another, it cannot but be a fact that the deed was done, and any “alternative fact” that would have it so that no killing was done is simply false, and, when meant to deceive, a lie!
The duty to speak the truth is so elemental a demand of morality and of good social order that it can hardly be reduced to more elementary precepts. It is almost as fundamental as the first principle of all morality: “Do good; avoid evil.” Human life would be impossible in a society where we constantly and habitually deceived each other.
Crucial decisions — personal and social — depend on the accurate grasp of facts. “Alternative facts” and “fake news” engender faulty decisions many times with disastrous long-term consequences to persons and to communities. Sadly, we see this happening today. There are persons who have given themselves to the service of reporting what never happened, concealing what really happened, and distorting what should be presented in a straightforward manner.