Philippine bishop urges boycott of Madonna concert

Madonna visiting Bahay Tuluyan, home to about 500 abused or abandoned children.
Madonna visiting Bahay Tuluyan, home to about 500 abused or abandoned children.PHOTO: MADONNA'S INSTAGRAM

MANILA •Philippine Catholic bishops yesterday called on the faithful to boycott Madonna's sexually charged concerts in Manila, calling them the devil's work.

Madonna, 57, was to cavort on a giant cross-shaped stage in concerts yesterday and today as part of her global Rebel Heart tour.

In a statement on the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines' official website, Archbishop Ramon Arguelles said Madonna's first concerts in the Philippines were among "subtle attacks of the evil one".

On Tuesday, Madonna visited a shelter for abused children and a Catholic orphanage in Manila.

"Chillin' with my homies," she wrote, posting an Instagram selfie with three children, as they lay on cardboard mats on the floor of Bahay Tuluyan, home to about 500 abused or abandoned children.

She arrived with an entourage of 20 dancers and burly bodyguards, Bahay Tuluyan executive director Lily Flordelis said.

"The children were very happy to see her. She played with them, danced with them and chatted with them," she said.

Tipping her maroon hat in another Instagram post, Madonna said: "Hats off to the Bahay Tuluyan Foundation in Manila for taking so many kids off the street and providing food and shelter."

She also visited orphanage Hospicio de San Jose and posted a picture of herself carrying a baby in pink overalls while holding the hand of an emaciated girl, also in pink, whom she identified as Celeste.

In Singapore, the Catholic Church has asked Catholics to "act according to their informed conscience" on whether to attend her show at the National Stadium on Sunday.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 25, 2016, with the headline 'Philippine bishop urges boycott of Madonna concert'. Print Edition | Subscribe