Now, I’m a Filipino-American, but I still have relatives in school in the Old Country. Now as the history books tell us, the Philippines achieved a short-lived period of independence at the turn of the century, thanks to a revolution against Spanish colonial control. Problem is, at second glance, several of the country’s national heroes were either anticlericalists like Jose Rizal or defrocked priests sentenced to death by the colonial authorities. The standard literary canon in there are some of Rizal’s writings, which, while literarily and historically are of merit for obvious reasons, also contains a large dose of anticlerical propaganda.
So what is a devout Catholic to make of all this, that some of his country’s greatest patriots also had a bit of a hate-on for the Church?