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Home Columns A Voice From America An Open Letter to Rotarian “Joc Joc” Bolante from a Filipino-American Rotarian
An Open Letter to Rotarian “Joc Joc” Bolante from a Filipino-American Rotarian PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - A Voice From America
Saturday, 15 November 2008 13:45

D ear Mr. Bolante:


 

            Edmund Burke said, “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing!”

 

        You and I have never met, and probably will never do. You do not know me as I am just a simple guy, doing the best I can do for my family, my community both locally and internationally as a Rotarian for about 10 years now and as one member of one race, the Human Race. 

 

          Before this infamous Philippine “Fertilizer Scam” where your name has been linked so many times, I was very proud of you then, as you were the highest-ranking Filipino in the Rotary International hierarchy and  had the great potential  to become the second Filipino (after M.A.T. Caparas in 1985-1986)  RI president in the near future.   It’s with great tragedy that your name was linked to this “Fertilizer Fiasco” that obviously caused great harm to your family name, your reputation and probably even a threat to your own life and your family (according to many fellow Rotarians in the Philippines who know you well) as you were apparently made a pawn (like in chess) protecting the “Queen and the King” of the Philippines.

 

         Because you are  a Rotarian like me, I also got affected somehow when my fellow American Rotarian friends teased me unceasingly just to ask you for some matching funds for our projects and that you were the greatest “JOKE” of Rotary. Yes, Mr. Bolante, although it seems grossly unfair, we Filipino Rotarians have become the butt of unflattering jokes.  It’s sad and it hurts.

 

           Although you probably have not been attending Rotary meetings for a couple of years now since your detention in the USA and now in your hospital bed at St. Luke’s, I dare say that you still remember the good times, the many pleasant things, fellowships, teachings and joys that you have experienced in Rotary that left indelible marks in the deep recesses of your soul as Rotary did to many true Rotarians, including me. I like to believe that you have also  read the lives of many great men (like Rizal, Gandhi, Mandela as and recent Filipino martyrs Ninoy Aquino and Evelio Javier)  and many Saints (who did not sell their souls despite an impending death, like John the Baptist and many martyrs of the world) and I just hope and pray those GREAT men and WOMEN whose spirit and lives serve as your inspiration (root word “IN SPIRIT”) as you face more trials in the  last half or last quarter  of your earthly life.  

 

          As one human being who is doing something to make this world a better place for my children and their children, and a passionate Rotarian trying to follow the OBJECTIVES OF ROTARY and adhering to the tenets of our FOUR WAY TEST (Is it the TRUTH?  Is it FAIR to all concerned? Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?  Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?) which is a living embodiment of the TEN COMMANDMENTS,  I am writing this OPEN LETTER to you, with an ardent prayer that GOD will guide you to have the courage to do what is RIGHT and not just what is convenient today, to be able to discern and follow GOD (God Orderly Direction) during these coming days/weeks where you have to face the greatest challenges of your earthly life.   

 

         As a father and husband, I too can empathize with your present predicament. I heard you also rose to fame and wealth because you are intelligent who worked hard for what you want in your life and for your family. But all these things (including our own physical bodies) are all finite things, and soon all these things will come to pass. After death, only the memory, our legacy, and our Spirit live on. In the final analysis, our life is God’s gift to us, and what we do with our lives is our gift to God.

 

          As you pray for wisdom and guidance for that bold-and-tough decision to testify (before the Senate and/or the Ombudsman office) I will also include you in my prayers at today’s mass and my daily prayers this week.

 

          May the Redeemer of Humanity, our Lord Jesus Christ, fortify your mind and give you the strength to carry on and to make you physically and mental fit to undergo more trials of your life.

 

          Be consoled by the admonition of the Good Book: “Be not afraid!  The truth shall set you free!” God bless and protect you and your family, Mr. Bolante!

 

Praying for a better, more progressive and a moral Philippines as true Rotarians

LEAD THE WAY and MAKE DREAMS REAL!

 

Ernie Delfin, PP and Past AG

Newport Irvine Rotary Club

District 5320, Southern California

 

P.S. The Seven Sins in our World Today:  According to Mahatma Gandhi

 

1.    Wealth without Work.

2.    Pleasure without Conscience

3.    Knowledge without Character.

4.    Commerce without Morality.

5.    Science without Humanity.

6.    Worship without Sacrifice.

7.    Politics without principles.



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Last Updated on Saturday, 15 November 2008 13:47
 

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