His Excellency Broderick Pabillo, Auxiliary Bishop of Manila, presides a Eucharistic celebration.
Manila Cathedral/Jason Molinas
Pope Francis names Bishop Pabillo caretaker of Manila archdiocese
Gaea Katreena Cabico (Philstar.com) - February 10, 2020 - 5:41pm

MANILA, Philippines — Pope Francis has appointed Bishop Broderick Pabillo as the caretaker of the Archdiocese of Manila.

The pope announced Pabillo’s appointment as the apostolic administrator of the archdiocese Monday following the departure of Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle as Manila’s top prelate.

Tagle left Manila for Vatican to assume his new post as the prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples—a department responsible for promoting Catholic faith around the world.

Pabillo, who has been critical of the government’s "war on drugs", will be the caretaker of the Archdiocese of Manila until a new archbishop is appointed.

“Let us thank the Lord for Cardinal Chito (Tagle) who served as the archbishop of Manila for eight years. Let us pray for him as he embarks on his new mission,” Fr. Reginald Malicdem, chancellor of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Manila, said.

He added: “Let us also thank the Lord for Bishop Broderick who will guide us during this period in our life as a local Church. And let us beg the Lord to give us a new shepherd molded after His own heart.”

Outspoken prelate

Pabillo has criticized President Rodrigo Duterte’s anti-narcotics campaign and his attacks on Catholic Church and its leaders several times in the past.

In 2017, the bishop called on Church leaders and the faithful to speak out against the killings in the government’s war on drugs. He also said the thousands killed in the conduct of the campaign are “deeply traumatized and even now made more poor.”

In 2018, Pabillo wrote a blog post in response to the question “Why did God give us Duterte?” He pointed out it was the 16 million voters who chose him to be presidents, not God.

“Many very bad leaders had been elected by their people. Let us just name (Adolf) Hitler, (Benito) Mussolini and even our (Ferdinand) Marcos. They came to power by election. Duterte was elected by 16 million voters, not even the majority of our 50 million voters in 2016. He is not even a majority president,” the bishop said, adding he hopes Filipinos will become better voters next time.

Pabillo has been serving as Manila’s auxiliary bishop since 2006.

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