Bishops urge rethink of deportation order on Australian nun

And assembly of Philippine bishops and, right, Sister Patricia Fox

The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines has urged the Bureau of Immigration to rethink its decision to deport Australian nun Patricia Fox.

“We sincerely make an appeal that the authorities may make a reconsideration of their for Sister Patricia Fox to leave the country,” CBCP President Archbishop Romulo Valles said yesterday (Friday, April 27).

“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 Sister 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’,” he added, quoting a verse from the Bible.

At the same time, the Davao archbishop said he hoped that after hearing the side of the nun, aged 71, she would be allowed to stay and continue her advocacies in the country.

“With a hope for a reconsideration regarding the BI’s after giving Sister 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 Sister Patricia Fox – for her health and well-being.” 

Last week, the CBCP said it was ready to provide any to Fox, who a member of the Notre Dame de Sion congregation.

The bureau ordered her to leave the country after cancelling her missionary visa, due to allegations she had involved herself in political matters.

The nun was arrested by bureau personnel at her house in Quezon City on Monday, April 16. She was released the next day after questioning, before being given 30 days to leave the country on Wednesday.