Tell it to SunStar: Arrest of Notre Dame de Sion nun

WE condemn the Bureau of Immigration’s arrest and detention of Sr. Patricia Fox, NDS, without due process and respect for her fundamental rights and rights as a Church person. Sr. Pat belongs to the religious congregation of the Notre Dame de Sion. Her congregation sent her here as a missionary in 1990.

Impelled by the Christian faith and the mandate of the Church, she has obediently accepted the mission of preaching the Good News and be in solidarity with the poor. Inspired by Church teachings and especially encouraged by Pope Francis’s admonition to be Church of the Poor and be present at the periphery, Sr. Pat “gave food to the hungry and drink to the thirsty. She visited the sick and those in prison.” She lives simply and works tirelessly with the poor.

On April 16, agents from the Bureau of Immigration (BI) arrested her in her convent and brought her to the BI detention room without any court order. She was shown pictures of herself joining rallies and present in fact-finding and mercy missions among the indigenous peoples and the plundered ecological environment.

When has it become a crime for Church people to exercise their right to preach the Gospel and be in solidarity with the poor?

We are deeply thankful for the support accorded to Sr. Pat by the poor peasants, the urban poor, the lay movements and human rights advocates and Church people, especially the consoling presence and inspiring intervention of Bishop Broderick Pabillo, D.D. and of the Papal Nuncio through his representative.

We call on Church people to assert our rights to preach the Gospel and be in solidarity with the poor and to pursue the Gospel imperative to respond effectively to human needs and to the cry of creation with love and compassion, truth and freedom.--Promotion of Church People’s Response