The Episcopal Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People of the Philippine bishops’ conference welcomed the royal pardon handed on 16 Filipino migrant workers by the king of Bahrain.
Bishop Ruperto Santos of Balanga, the commission’s vice chairman, said King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain gave the Filipinos “new life” with his gesture.
The prelate said the king’s gesture showed the “spirit of compassion and mutual relationship between countries.”
“We can [also] apply to be considerate, to be compassionate, to be caring to the foreigners who are in our country or those who are working in other countries,” he said.
Bishop Santos said the release of the 16 Filipinos is “a second chance” and it gives “inspiration and strength” to their families.
The prelate expressed his gratitude to King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain, who also released 901 prisoners for humanitarian grounds due to the coronavirus pandemic in March.
The prelate urged the migrant workers who were granted pardon to “use this second chance to correct any mistake, improve personal relationships with people, and to work.”
Bishop Santos said the church will continue to extend help to migrant workers who are in distress while respecting the laws in foreign lands.
On May 31, President Rodrigo Duterte also expressed his gratitude to the king of Bahrain for his “forgiveness” and the order to release the Filipino detainees.
“The royal pardon is testament anew to the abiding ties between the Philippines and the Kingdom of Bahrain and the deep and strong relations with his majesty,” said Duterte.
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