Perhaps I can help out with this discussion as an outsider looking in. I'm Filipino and a Philippine national, but spent my entire life outside of the Philippines (Africa and USA). The problem with the Philippines is not an intangible noun like "corruption" or "poverty"; the problem with the Philippines is FILIPINOS. We have to stop being insular and realize that Filipinos do not possess the same abilities of self-rule like other peoples of the world. Filipinos, by nature, make excellent learners and workers, but are not inherently capable of being leaders and creators. The Philippines is a society of FOLLOWERS. What good is a society like that when you have incompetent direction to utilize it? Hence, the mass migration of Filipinos and brain drain to countries whose administrative systems and job markets are more vibrant and able. Filipinos have to realize that they're not as talented when it comes to leading and creating. This is an area that needs effort and attention.
Catholicism or any religion in itself is not going to save the Philippines. FILIPINOS themselves can only save the Philippines. Filipinos have to re-wire themselves first to do so. One problem with Catholicism (and is probably why Filipinos stick to it) is that it's a religion that permits a very PASSIVE way of living. Catholics confide in that if you adorn your walls with enough images and idols, attend mass regularly, and perform the same prayers and rituals over and over that something good will magically happen. Your faith and your actual actions are separate entities. This way of living gives nothing in the way of personal responsibility. THAT is why corruption and poverty happens; nobody has any incentive to be accountable. What happened in America when it brought in many Catholic immigrants (such as Irish and Italians)? Crime, mobs, corruption, violence.
There are two sides to everyone: a natural side and nurtured side. Both are vital. Why did America turn out to be such a successful society? It's HOW the original American settlers were and WHAT they did with it. They were Northern European descendants who, like their brethren, had the instinct to explore new lands and better their own lives. They believed it was their divine calling to MANIFEST (doing) the Lord's will through their WORK ETHIC. They believed that you become a virtuous human being not by merely what you say, but by what you DO. Their genuine desire to be self-sufficient and self-improving led to the present American nation today. See the difference? Can the Filipino people understand this? Things don't magically happen nor are things magically unfair.
I hope this helps.
This is a GRP Featured Comment. Join the discussion!