A handshake is a globally widespread, brief greeting or parting tradition in which two people grasp one of each other's hands, in most cases accompanied by a brief shaking or up-and-down movement of the hands.
The handshake is also commonly done upon meeting a new person, offering congratulations, expressing gratitude, or as a public sign of completing a business or diplomatic agreement. In sports or other competitive activities, it is also done as a sign of good sportsmanship. Its purpose is to convey trust, respect, balance, and equality. If it is done to form an agreement, the agreement is not official until the hands are parted.
Who would have thought that something that is universally accepted and practiced will very well be a thing of the past in the very near future? Why? Because of a global pandemic that is now threatening the very existence of mankind. Enter COVID-19.
This Coronavirus Disease is making such a huge impact on our lives. It did not require an appointment to let us know when it will come, it did not require an announcement to let us know it is here, nor did it require a passport to cross borders (well, its carriers did). It did not require any approval from any government or agency and it does not discriminate on age, race or nationality. It simply arrived and unfortunately, the whole world was totally UNPREPARED.
Because of this widespread pandemic, everything we've come to know during our lifetime changed in an instant and in such epic proportions. The way we work, the way we travel, the way we communicate, the way we live and the way we look at toilet paper is no longer and may never be the same again.
What does it mean for us when businesses can no longer continue and people can no longer work to earn money for their needs? Enter Recession.
In economics, a recession is a business cycle contraction when there is a general decline in economic activity. Recessions generally occur when there is a widespread drop in spending (an adverse demand shock). This may be triggered by various events, such as a financial crisis, an external trade shock, an adverse supply shock, a pandemic, or the bursting of an economic bubble. A global recession is recession that affects many countries around the world—that is, a period of global economic slowdown or declining economic output.
During this very challenging time clouded by great uncertainty, everyone is coming together to combat the disease and help those who are most affected- the poor and the marginalized people of society. Governments are giving financial assistance to their citizens, corporations are making ways for their employees to continue to work from home and have the assurance that they will still receive their salaries and benefits. Different groups of people are coming together to show that loving and helping others, especially those who are in need, are more important than money.
All except, this guy...
When everyone was advocating for self-quarantine in order to curb the rapid spread of the virus, Bro. Eduardo V. Manalo and his whole Church Administration continued to defy all restrictions until someone with the balls called them out.
One would think that the INC Administration would be ashamed of their insolence but no, they just schemed another way to defy the rule of law, not because they are genuinely and sincerely concerned with the welfare of the brethren and the general public, but because of the thought of not being able to generate funds from voluntary (not-so voluntary anymore) contributions petrified them. When other people are finding ways to financially help the people in need, the Church Administration focuses all its resources on finding ways to burden the brethren. It's no wonder why other religious figures are putting the Eduardo V. Manalo Church Administration to shame:
And immediately after that came the Mickey Mouse show of how the Church Administration of Eduardo V. Manalo scrambled to save face thru his propaganda arms just like this one:
In a time when they are most needed to shepherd and comfort the Brethren, Bro. Eduardo V. Manalo and his Ministers are nowhere to be found. But his right-hand guy, his sidekick, is everywhere:
Isn't it ironic how the Church Administration parades money and flaunts it for the whole world to see as if it came from their pockets? Are they that insensitive to realize that the money they are using came from the faithful members, many of which are considered impoverished families? This only proves that it's all for the show, for that precious photo-op to blow their own trumpets. Yet the Bible is explicit about this and they are blatantly defying a sacred command:
They call attention to their charitable acts as HYPOCRITES do! This is why they have received all the reward they will ever get.
You see, the powerful and influential Executive Minister and his Church Administration, even with all their money, were totally powerless against a plague, in the form of this COVID19 pandemic! Yet, they cannot resist what is second nature to them, to bribe their way out of destruction. This is something unbelievable to them because it has suddenly suppressed their freedom to conduct business as usual! And it reveals to the world that money, and not spirituality is what makes their world go round and round. Their troubles started long ago. Plague after plague, their hearts were hardened although God wanted to give them a chance to repent. Until finally, a pandemic forces them to shut their doors. This LOCKDOWN is the hand of God finally acting against these rebel leaders!
But did you know who were the ones unknowingly prepared for this worst-case scenario...? The SURVIVORS, those who were LOCKED DOWN first for standing up for the truth instead of material gain. They are the very few true members of the Church of Christ.
Who were the first ones who were forcibly quarantined and put into lockdown? Do you still remember what happened in 2015?
Who were the first ones to experience the traumatic forceful imprisonment as an act of oppression by the EVM Church Administration? The family of Bro. Eraño G. Manalo and those with them in No. 36 Tandang Sora, Quezon City. Bro. Angel Manalo and his companions are locked down in prison to this very day. His family and the family of sister Lottie are still in hiding. Bro. Marc Manalo, Sister Tenny Manalo, and the other families have been in self-quarantine for years. Even the Defenders of the cause. Many are still in hiding and in isolation for many years in order to survive the persecution and oppression for fighting for the truth. Many have been working from home as a means to survive and to continue to help others especially the oppressed. This is nothing new to many of us because God has prepared us. We have been ridiculed and mocked for having our Daily Prayers, Bible Studies, and Worship Groups online so that many of our Brethren can join us wherever they may be, even in their very own homes. God has once more paved the way for His people to come out of the once sacred institution which turned into a harlot. Many are being called to worship Him in their own homes with the use of technology, one that the EVM administration is now scrabbling to copy and provide to the lost and confused sheep.
But remember that we were not only prepared to continue our worship for the love of our God but because the Church leaders themselves refused to do what was tasked to them by God, we are here to take on an equally important duty- to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.
There are those who may appear to be godly but refuse to defend the cause of orphans or fight for the rights of widows. But those who will uphold what's written in Isaiah 1:17 will manifest the determining acts to know who are the ones truly set aside by God.
Hopefully, the current leaders of the Iglesia Ni Cristo will have a change of spirit starting from the very top. Unfortunately, since EVM does not have the same humility as his father and grandfather who administered the Church before him did, and EVM does not have the same love for his own mother, sisters, and brothers as taught by the same scriptures he pretends to preach, the same defiled spirit contaminates some of the members under his influence and became blind followers.
During a mandatory community lockdown in the Philippines, a man arrogantly shouts that he is a member of the Iglesia Ni Cristo using it as an excuse or a pass to do whatever he wants and exempt him from the law. That is the typical mindset and behavior the current leaders of the church display. Because they have great influence through bloc voting to position government officials, they feel entitled to be above the law
And now that going to the physical house of worship can not be imposed on the members due to the quarantine, many silent defenders are able to make a firm choice not to return to the cult-like and vindictive church under EVM. On our next articles, will feature some of the Voice of the Brethren letters we've received so that it will inspire more of our brothers and sisters to stand up for the truth and be Silent No More.
Oh and by the way, just in case Bro. Glicerio B. Santos Jr. is wondering, on the 29th of January 2020, a new world record for the longest handshake relay was set by approximately 1,817 people in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates at Umm Al Emarat Park in an event organized by the Abu Dhabi Police to celebrate the 1 year anniversary of the signing of the Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together in the city.
This will be easy enough to break for the plaque-raising-hungry Ministers of EVM, don’t you think? We challenge you to do it. Isn’t it your faith that God will save you from illness and that if he does not, he will save your souls anyway? EVM's very own insensitivity infuriates the very people he is trying to convince to join him to be saved. Just look at how people are reacting to the One-With-EVM culture of the current church under Eduardo V. Manalo...
Stay safe my beloved brethren. When in doubt, pray. Wash your hands clean especially in the sight of the Lord and practice social distancing from sin. After all, cleanliness is Godliness. This way, we effectively do our part in stopping the pandemic of disease and promoting the pandemic of God’s love. Even in the midst of crisis, be bearers of love and kindness and spread them to our fellowmen. If we practice these traits, we will all the more be able to survive whatever plagues and hardships that may beset this world. For now, take precautions and Handshake No More but stay honorable. May God bless us all!
~ Antonio Ramirez Ebangelista
“They tried to bury us…they didn’t know we were seeds.”
“Unlike you, I don’t have power or money, but what I do have is a very particular set of skills, skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you tell the truth now, that’ll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don’t, I will look for you, I will find you, and I will expose you.” – A.E.
Philippine Daily Inquirer Article: “Antonio Ebangelista writes Philippine Daily Inquirer, Warns Iglesia Elders”
Question adn Answer: Q & A with Antonio Ebangelista
The CHOICE is always UP TO YOU : “The Red Pill. The Blue Pill”
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