Catholic News Agency
This is our second statement regarding the situation of Sr. Patricia Fox, NDS, a Catholic nun working in the Philippines.
Last week, Sr. Patricia was taken into custody and detained and questioned by the Bureau of Immigration (BI). But later, she was released.
Today, we read in the national newspapers that the Bureau of Immigration has revoked the visa of Sr. Patricia, compelling her to leave the country within 30 days from receipt of the order. “She was found to have engaged in activities that are not allowed under the terms and conditions of her visa… We direct Fox to leave the Philippines within 30 days from receipt of this order.” (Philippine Star, page 2)
We are truly saddened by this turn of events.
The situation certainly involves legalities – the authorities have said that she has been found to have violated certain laws of our land. On the other hand, it is reported that her lawyer would first file a motion for reconsideration before the Bureau of Immigration to dispute the findings. (Philippine Star, page 2)
As in our previous statement, all the information that we have regarding this recent development is from the national newspapers. Our CBCP Secretariat is still trying to get more information from the community of Sr. Patricia Fox.
In this recent development, we sincerely make an appeal that the authorities may make a reconsideration of their order for Sr. Patricia Fox to leave the country.
Without entering into the merits of both parties in the case, this is for the proper authorities to decide. But this we say: We believe in the sincerity and dedication of Sr. Patricia to serve our people. We believe further that she is moved to serve our people by the love of Christ. “The love of Christ urges us.” (2 Cor. 5:14)
With a hope for a reconsideration regarding the BI’s order after giving Sr. Patricia a chance to explain herself again, in a spirit of dialogue, could she be given a chance to stay and continue serving our people?
We continue to pray for the Lord’s enlightenment for all those who are involved in this case, but in particular, we continue to pray for Sr. Patricia Fox – for her health and wellbeing.
From the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, 26 April 2018
+ ROMULO G. VALLES, D.D.
Archbishop of Davao
President, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines