The Philippines is 80% Catholic. President Duterte is ferociously anti-Catholic.

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Rodrigo Duterte, president of the Philippines, delivering a speech in April 2019. Presidential photo by Simeon Celi Jr. 

When it comes to the partnership among Christianity and politics, the Philippines is an anomalous case. It is a nation with 1 of the world’s biggest Christian populations—which is destined to develop mightily in coming decades—and the proof of widespread Catholic piety is quick to see. However in the previous handful of years, the nation has acquired a regime that speaks the language of ferocious anti-Catholicism and anticlericalism. How on earth did this take place?

With a population of 105 million, the Philippines is at least 80 % Catholic, with yet another 10 to 15 % Protestant. It is currently 1 of the world’s two or 3 biggest centers of Catholic population, and by 2050 the nation will most likely be dwelling to 120 million Catholics.

That Catholic bedrock is apparent at events like the annual pilgrimage and procession in Manila related with the image of the Black Nazarene. This previous January, this astonishing gathering, referred to as the Traslación, attracted some five million of the faithful. By way of comparison, that is roughly double the quantity of Muslims who travel every single year to Mecca for their a lot more celebrated pilgrimage, the Hajj. And the Traslación is only 1 of the good festivities that make up the thriving ritual year about the nation. The Marian shrine of Baclaran is an overwhelming attraction.

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