You got to hand it to the Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) to make a scene out of an already manic day.
Suspended classes, heavy traffic, and people fainting on the streets are the least scenarios one would expect of a public service initiative. But such were the sights in Mega Manila on October 14 when the INC held their medical and relief operations.
Boasting a 1.6 to 2 million attendees, it was a feat for the INC. And while it was all done under the banner of good intentions as their representatives boomed, there are valid reasons to doubt as to what kind of crowd the spectacle was really aiming to please.
You have to ask, why didn’t they set it on a weekend when people normally have time for extra-curricular and money-earning activities? When the streets don’t see as many vehicles as they would on a weekday? Why should there be a need to cancel a day’s worth of pay or education?
If weekends are really unfit for public service, then why the start of the workweek?
Why in October when their anniversary is in July? Why two weeks shy of the barangay elections?
The INC, which according to its SEC registration is under a sole corporation, has a highly-publicized headcount with claims even reaching five million faithfuls. But what makes it unique among the other religions in the country who hold public services as well — less the ability to cease day-to-day traffic, work, and school operations — is their doctrine of bloc-voting.
Regarding the timing of it all, they can say that the barangay elections coming around the corner is just coincidence. Maybe. Or could it be the ticking of the same organizational-clockwork that runs in them to publicly proclaim their choice of candidates in a presidential or senatorial bout a a week or two before the actual election date? Whether incidentally or coincidentally, that’s also the same time when national surveys or polls come in.
Logic and Logistics
From this humble blogger’s point of view, it could’ve gone this way:
Since they are in the millions as they say, and they have partnership with the local government, wouldn’t it have been more convenient for all if they had just sent relief goods and medical personnel to barangay halls, where poor people normally go to for medical help anyway?
Or, since their chapels are so big, wouldn’t it have been better to accommodate people there so several would-be patients wouldn’t have fainted under the sun’s heat? Their representative said that they have been doing this for quite some time now. Wouldn’t an organization handling millions – doing charity – be able to calculate the logistics needed for a medical mission and relief operations of a smaller scale and within the capital only?
At the End of the Day…
What is most important that the people should see? In the end, it’s never about the budget nor the success of an advertisement that people will feel and hopefully will value, but the truthfulness of the message you tried to get across. Otherwise, it’s just another manic day.