April 12, 2016
by Arman Toga
Negros Daily Bulletin

The Diocese of Kabankalan paid tribute to the late Atty. Francisco B. Cruz, a human rights lawyer, for his commitment and legal services to the victims of abuses during the Martial Law years.

KABANKALAN DIOCESE TRIBUTE. Left to right, Manuel Fortun, Jaoquin Fortun, Jenna Cruz-Fortun, Julio Cruz, Lita Cruz, Kerl Cruz, Kerr Michael Cruz, Bishop Patricio Buzon and Fr. Eryl Agus.*

Led by Bishop Patricio Buzon and Fr. Eryl Agus, director of the Commission on Social Action, the April 8, 2016 ceremony at St. Pope Pasul Pastoral Center at St. Francis Xavier Parish in Kabankalan City, Negros Occidental was attended by Atty. Cruz’ family.

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Atty. Cruz’ wife Manuela “Lita” Cruz, children Jenna Cruz-Fortun and Ker Michael Cruz, Jena’s hus-band Manuel Fortun, and the late lawyer’s grandchildren Kerl Cruz, Joaquin Fortun and Julio Fortun, were present.

Fr. Brian Gore explained the rationale behind the tribute, saying the ceremony was not enough for all the kindness and contribution to the poor of the late human rights lawyer.

Speakers from southern Negros Occidental also emotionally shared their personal experiences on how Atty. Cruz’ invaluable and unfailing commitment to help them with their legal battles advanced their rights.

Kerr Michael Cruz acknowledged, and responded, by sharing a quote from his late father, “By helping the poor we are not giving them favor, instead they are giving us favor by giving us the opportunity to help them”.


Cruz’ family led by his wife received the plaque of recognition from the diocese during the program last Friday morning.*(Arman P. Toga)


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