DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Peace adviser Jesus Dureza says his Holiness Pope Francis will bless President Rodrigo Duterte.
Dureza, Dutuerte’s chief peace adviser is among the members of the peace panel who went to Rome, Italy for the third round of the peace talks with the Communist party of the Philippines-National Democratic Front (CPP-NDF) met the pontiff at the Vatican on Wednesday, January 18.
The Newsline.ph asked how Dureza felt when he kissed the ring of the pope? “Feeling my hair on end as I kissed. but I almost choked when he said : I will Bless your president,” he described.
When asked what came into his mind when the pontiff offered to bless the President, Duetrte narrated:
“Kahilakon ko. Tindog akong balahibo, Then I thought: wala gyud sya nakalimot siguro, (I nearly cried, then I thought, maybe he never forgot)”. but Dureza did not expound.
Just months before the May 9 elections last year , Duterte drew flak for curing the pontiff over a traffic situation during his visit in 2015, but in January 2016 send a letter to Vatican and apologized.
Upon meeting the pontiff, Dureza said “Bless the Philippines, You Holiness” but the Pope specifically answered he will bless Duterte.
Aside from Dureza, Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto Yasay was at the Vatican.
Yasay handed the letter of Duterte to the Pope Francis to personally thank him for visiting the Philippines last January 2015.