LATEST word from General Santos City says Manny Pacquiao’s Bible-packing pastor friends have suddenly gone out of sight.
It’s not however clear whether they have disappeared for good or were just cooling their heels in the suburbs.
These pastors were the very ones denounced by Mommy Dionisia, the Pacman’s loving mom, for having pushed the Filipino boxing superhero out of sync in his last fight against Mexico’s Juan Manuel Marquez.
Mommy D. decried how Pacquiao had been made to stay up till the wee hours of morning in the run-up to the Marquez fight trying to interpret and memorize the Bible with these pastors.
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Ms. Yolly Alfante, president of the Mindanao Professional Boxing Association, reported on the missing Bible preachers yesterday.
“I myself had warned Manny about those guys. They were nowhere on Tuesday and Manny himself assured they were all gone,” Alfante told the Inquirer.
Alfante said Pacquiao stared at her and signaled with both eyes and hands that there were no more pastors around.
Alfante said that, knowing Pacquiao, whom he had helped in his hungry years, the boxing hero meant the pastors have been dumped for good.
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The take-charge boxing association chief said Pacquiao has instead offered to be the honorary chair of the Buhay Kamao Foundation Inc. newly organized by Alfante.
Pacquiao did not specify what he would contribute, but has agreed to devote time and effort for the success of the BKF, which aims to discover and develop promising talents, while having younger aspirants enrolled in an exclusive boxing academy it plans to establish in various parts of the country.
There, indeed, was urgency in Ms. Alfante’s crusade to lift the state of boxing in the country, while helping out poor fighters in their twilight years.
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Similarly urgent, if not more, is this cry from an avowed boxing expert and specialist to be able to link up or at least get in touch with Manny Pacquiao.
Retired judge Jose Saño, 76, has asked this reporter to please accompany him to Pacquiao (“Kung mamarapatin mo, pumunta tayo kay Manny na bigyan tayo ng pagkakataong matulungan siya.”)
The retired judge, who claimed having suggested and taught the shock punch administered by Tommy Romulo on his Japanese opponent (“described as one that could have felled a mule”), has sent a three-page laboriously typed single-spaced thesis on the rudiments and philosophy of the Sweet Science.
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I vouch for the sharpness and brilliance of the write-up. (“Honestly, Manny could—and still can—be greater than he is now despite his recent downfall.”)
I have no way of immediately getting in touch with Mr. Pacquiao.
The best I could do is leave here the address and phone number of the volunteer expert. Judge Jose Pano (ret.) No. 5-A Galvez, Philamlife Subd., Las Piñas City. Tel. No.872-10-33.
I will also ask my son Chino to relay your offer to Manny Pacquiao.
I will also try to find a way for your letter (to me) to reach Manny Pacquiao.
God bless you on your noble concern for our national treasure.