Friday, January 20, 2012

An Appeal for Dondon Celestino Lanuza

My national interest can be summed up in one word - you.

When the Providence of the LORD singles out one of our compatriots as in the case of Dondon Celestino Lanuza, our national leaders should listen, in fact, we should all listen.

Because these are the times when our sense of unity is tested not through the threats arrayed against it but through an opportunity to actually benefit from its merits.

For our sense of unity is further strengthened not only by our sense of repulsion from the things of War but also by our sense of attraction to the things of the Light.

To respond to this invitation to assist in obtaining the freedom of one of our own is an exercise of unity. And if we are successful in giving this needful brother of ours his life back, we are indeed further strengthened.

Let us now bear this first principle in mind - we are to love our own - in a hundred thousand ways, direct and indirect, if we become to each other, a keeper and a friend, a citizen though and through, we shall only heap blessings upon our nation.

Justice is not upheld through vengeance, my fellow Filipinos, nor is Justice served by anger.

Justice animated by Justice shall always be solicitous of our individual potential to bring in more good into this world despite the sins one is oft inclined to humanly commit, however grievous they may be.

In the case of the criminal, once the sanction of Law is applied, it is still the domain of Justice to restore the peace of the community and to the individuals concerned - repair and restitution.

With this in mind, I am now formally appealing to each one of you, my brothers and sisters of the Promise, the case of Dondon Celestino Lanuza.

Dondon was convicted in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the murder of one of their citizens in 2000 and condemned to die by beheading.

He has always maintained that the act of killing of which he is convicted is an act of self-defense.

Forgiven by the kin of the victim in February of 2011, Dondon is now in need of the customary "blood money" to be paid to the aggrieved family to obtain his freedom and the relief of his own family.

Dondon is a father of two and has been supporting his family in jail through alms given to him by his friends. He has been awaiting execution for the past 11 years.

We need to help him raise the 35 million pesos (USD 800,000) required by the victim's family to secure his freedom. Through each our own gifts, in each our own ways, I want us to contribute toward the welfare of one of our own in the person of Dondon.

This is my formal appeal to you.

I especially would like to see prominent people in our society - politicians, movers and shakers, industry leaders - become more and more interested in the plight of this littlest Filipino. Citizens of other nations with a heart of common humanity are also welcome to help.

Please, I shall leave it to you to find out more about it. The same with everything I post on this blog, I shall likewise be following this issue.

Thank you so much for taking the time to listen.

Mabuhay po tayong lahat!

Think about it -

They say, my brothers and sisters of the Promise, famously - that a team only goes as fast as its slowest member.

This is not true. (Imagine if it were...)

A team only goes as fast as its willingness to act as a team.

Unit efficiency not individual weaknesses is the constant:

This shall be our mindset as well.

NOTE: I usually do not openly disclose my humble material offerings to the LORD (my prayer life is not unlike my almsgiving - a deeply personal and private affair) but in this case, I shall have to make an exception. (20120123)

I am going start with a donation of P500.00 which I shall deposit to -

Account Name: Letty Lanuza
Bank: Metrobank Malolos McArthur Hi-Way Branch
Savings Account No.: 575-3-57501112-9
Bank Swift Code: MBTCPHMM

(20120124) Important: One has to bring up the fact that all Metrobank related fees are to be waived when donating through this channel (per the information on the website).

The teller system does not automatically bring it up. I deposited my donation today and was asked to pay a fee of P50.00 (as the account opening branch is outside Metro Manila) to the Metrobank branch near SM Southmall - gladly.

I might come back another day to get my P50.00 back though. P50.00 is still P50.00, right? I'll just put it through to the account also and make sure it does not go to the bank.

(20120127) I went back to the branch to inform them of the fee waiver but was - in no uncertain terms - asked to "coordinate" it with the account opening branch. In other words, despite my explanations, the supervisor on duty decided in advance not to help me.

I can see through his poker face as he blew me off and as I am not ignorant of bank procedures this was doubly upsetting to me... so there. No matter, this is not about him. I pray for your freedom, Dondon!

(20121122) Responding to the call to be one of 1,500 donor, I deposited another 1000 today for Dondon's freedom account at the Metrobank near Starmall Las Pinas. I wasn't asked the P50.00 fee this time which was cool. Everything went smoothly. Inshalla, Dondon, God be with you to be your comfort and strength.