by Father James Reuter, S.J. By her own admission, GMA (Gloria Macapagal Arroyo) rightfully assessed that over the last decades; our republic has become one of the weakest, steadily left behind by its more progressive neighbors.' Forty years ago, we wereonly second to Japan in economic stature, and way ahead of Singapore , Hong Kong , Malaysia , and Thailand . Today, at our present growth rate, it willtake us 30 years to get to where Thailand is. 1. A population of 160 Million; 2. Of those, 70 to 90 million (equivalent to our current population) will live below the poverty line; 3. Our national debt is estimated to be at US$200B (compared to US$28B when Marcos fled, and US$53B today); 4. We will be competing, not against Thailand or even Vietnam , but against Bangladesh ; 5. We will be the most corrupt nation in Asia , if not in the world (we're already ranked 11th most corrupt nation by Transparency International) . The signs are clear. Our nation is headed towards an irreversible path ofeconomic decline and moral decadence. It is not for lack of effort. We'veseen many men and women of integrity in and out of government, NGOs, churchgroups & people's organization devote themselves to the task ofnation-building, often times against insurmountable odds. But not even two people's revolutions, bloodless as they may be, have made adent in reversing this trend. At best, we have moved one step forward, butthree steps backward. We need a force far greater than our collective efforts, as a people, canever hope to muster. It is time to move the battle to the spiritual realm.It's time to claim GOD's promise of healing of the land for His people. It'stime to gather GOD's people on its knees to pray for the economic recoveryand moral reformation of our nation. Is prayer really the answer? Before you dismiss this as just anotherrambling of a religious fanatic, I'd like you to consider some lessons wecan glean from history. England 's ascendancy to world power was preceded by the Reformation, aspiritual revival fueled by intense prayers. The early American settlers built the foundation that would make it the mostpowerful nation today - a strong faith in GOD and a disciplined prayer life.Throughout its history, and especially at its major turning points, waves of revival and prayer movement swept across the land. In recent times, we see Korea as a nation experiencing revival and in theprocess producing the largest Christian church in the world today, led byRev. Paul Yongi Cho. No wonder it has emerged as a strong nation when othereconomies around it are faltering. Even from a purely secular viewpoint, it makes a lot of sense. For herethere is genuine humbling & seeking of GOD through prayer, moral reformationnecessarily follows. And this, in turn, will lead to general prosperity.YES, we believe prayer can make a difference. It's our only hope. Today, we launch this email brigade, to inform Filipinos from all over theworld to pray, as a people, for the economic recovery and moral reformationof our nation. We do not ask for much. We only ask for 5 minutes of yourtime in a day, to fwd this email to your close friends and relatives. This is the kind of unity which can make a big difference. Of course, if youfeel strongly, as I do, about the power of prayer, you can be more involvedby starting your own prayer group or prayer center. We have tried people power twice; in both cases, it fell short. Maybe it'stime to try prayer power. GOD never fails. Is there hope? YES! We can relyon God's promise, but we have to do our part. If we humble ourselves andpray as a people, GOD will heal our land. By GOD's grace, we may yet see abetter future for our children. 'If My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray,and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear fromHeaven, and will forgive their sins, and will heal their land.'(2 Chronicles7:14).
the only hope for the Philippines