Newly appointed Manila Archbishop Jose Cardinal Advincula said he wants to maintain an “open communication” with Malacañang during his term.
In a video message, the prelate said he is open to dialogues with the government although he noted he might be as outspoken as the late Jaime Cardinal Sin.
Sin became the archbishop of Manila from 1974 to 2004, was known for his role in ousting the late dictator and former President Ferdinand Marcos.
“I am afraid I could not be as vocal as Cardinal Sin. Although I have learned from Cardinal Sin for the information of our audience, he was the priest who admitted me to the seminary in 1964, in Capiz and my teacher in Latin in third year high school,” Advincula said.
“Cardinal Sin is my mentor,” he added.
Last Thursday, Pope Francis announced Advincula as the successor of former Archbishop of Manila Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, who is now serving as the Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples in the Vatican.
Upon his installation in the Archdiocese of Manila, Advincula wants to first visit the parishes in the Manila so he could engage in evangelization and pastoral activities.
He said he also wants to check on the status of priests within his jurisdiction.
“I will try to also engage in projects that can really help our poor brothers and sisters, and then also strengthen or continue the initiatives of my predecessors,” Advincula said.
“I still have to consult priests and people when I arrive in Manila about the need for smaller parishes and smaller jurisdiction within the dioceses,” he added.
He noted his tour in the largest archdiocese in the country, which covers 80 parishes, may greatly be limited due to ongoing pandemic.
The prelate urged the faithful “to remain steadfast in their faith” so they could cope with the pandemic.