In a radio interview, Military Bishop Oscar Jaime Florencio said being freed from prison does not mean that they are already licensed to resume their previous wrongdoings.
“Just because you are freed, it does not mean that it is okay to do wrong things. It does not,” said Florencio.
“The things we know to be wrong must not be done. Let us stay on the good side,” he added.
Earlier in the week, the Bureau of Corrections (Bucor) released 328 inmates from the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City and other prisons in the country.
Of the 328 inmates, 129 were released on parole, while the rest were able to complete their maximum sentence with good conduct and time allowance.
Florencio thanked the Bucor for granting freedom to the over 300 persons deprived of liberty (PDLs), especially with Christmas just around the corner.
“This is a perfect gift to these PDLs for this Christmas and New Year,” he said.
On the other hand, the prelate congratulated the released PDLs for regaining liberty.
“Congratulations to our brothers and sisters as they will be able to reunite with their families this coming Christmas and New Year,” said Florencio.
The Vatican earlier announced that Pope Francis will send letters to heads of state to urge them to release deserving inmates by granting them clemency.
This was seconded by the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines-Episcopal Commission on Prison Pastoral Care (ECPPC), which said the clemency will help rebuild their lives anew in the spirit of a true restorative and transformative justice system. (HDT/SunStar Philippines)