Sunday, March 16, 2008


Attention: News Editor, News Desk, Reporters and Photojournalists




In observance of the Holy Week, the urban poor are celebrating their annual “Kalbaryo ng Maralita” on March 18 (Tuesday) and this year it is done in partnership with farmers, fisherfolks, indigenous people, formal and informal labor groups.

The Kalbaryo reminds Philippine society that the suffering of Jesus in His Passion and death are repeated today in the suffering imposed on the poor by forced evictions, homelessness, hunger, landlessness, injustice, joblessness, lack of dignity and powerlessness. “Whatever you do to the least of my brothers you do unto me” (Mt. 25)

The Kalbaryo will begin at the Philippine National Railway (PNR) España Station (just South of España Ave.) and end with Mass at San Sebastian Church with Manila Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo, Caloocan Bishop Deogracias Iñiguez and priests at about 12:00 noon.

Over 1,200 poor people from different parts of Metro Manila and farmers, including those from Sumilao, Bukidnon and the Yulo estate in Laguna will gather at the railroad station at 8:00 AM and march towards Loreto Church, Mendiola and San Sebastian Church, following the traditional stations as they go.

The Kalbaryo will begin on the railroad tracks to remind everyone over 100,000 families have been or will be evicted from the railroad right of way from Clark Field to Calamba to prepare for the Northrail and Southrail Projects. Many have not received decent relocation.

Urban poor issues are contained in the CBCP Pastoral Statement on Homelessness of January 2007, namely, forced evictions, upgrading of urban poor areas and funding for Community Mortgage Program and other programs that help the urban poor. Farmer issues include continuation of Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) with reforms, and justice in special cases, for example, Sumilao and Hacienda Yulo.

Photo ops: The procession will be led by 7 men bearing the crosses of the poor families. There will be photo ops at the Stations of the Cross along the way.

Date: March 18, 2008 (Tuesday)

Time: Gather at 8:00 AM

Assembly point: Philippine National Railway (PNR) Station, España Avenue


Task Force Anti-Illegal Demolition, Urban Poor Alliance, Pambansang Ugnayan ng mga Nagkakaisang Organisasyon sa Kanayunan, Sumilao Farmers, Task Force Mapalad, Kilusang Mangingisda, KAMMMPI, Mamamayan para sa Pagpapaunlad at Pagpapanatili ng Lawa ng Laguna, Community Organization of the Philippine Enterprise Foundation, Urban Poor Associates, Community Organizers Multiversity, PHILSSA, PARRDS, R-10 Navotas Alliance, ULAP, Kabalikat-BASECO, SAPAR-South Rail, Manila Estero Informal Settlers Alliance, Samahan ng taga Estero Pasay, Samahan ng Nagkakaisang Batilyo-Navotas, Malabon Brgy. Volunteers Asso., NLU-KAAKBAY, NLU-FTA, AIWA/PMA, Women Health, Stop Laiban Dam Coalition, Freedom from Debt Coalition, Haydee Yorac Movement, PADAYON, Partido Manggagawa

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