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Pablo Virgilio David

Pablo Virgilio David
Bishop of Kalookan
Bishop Pablo Virgilio David, c. 2019.
ChurchCatholic Church
AppointedOctober 14, 2015
InstalledJanuary 2, 2016
PredecessorDeogracias Iñiguez Jr.
Other post(s)
OrdinationMarch 12, 1983
by Oscar Cruz
ConsecrationJuly 10, 2006
by Gaudencio Rosales
Paciano Aniceto (co-consecrator)
Angel Lagdameo (co-consecrator)
Personal details
Pablo Virgilio Siongco David

(1959-03-02) March 2, 1959 (age 65)
Guagua, Pampanga, Philippines
Previous post(s)Auxiliary Bishop, San Fernando
(2006 – 2015)
Titular Bishop, Guardialfiera
(2006 – 2015)
Alma materUniversité catholique de Louvain
Ateneo de Manila University
Coat of armsPablo Virgilio David's coat of arms

Pablo Virgilio Siongco David (born March 2, 1959), also known as "Bishop Ambo", is a Filipino prelate of the Catholic Church. He is the current bishop of the Diocese of Kalookan and is the president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines.

Early life and education


Pablo Virgilio David was born in Betis, Guagua, Pampanga on March 2, 1959. He is the 10th of the 13 children of Pedro David and Bienvenida Siongco.[1][2] He attended Mother of Good Counsel Minor Seminary in San Fernando, Pampanga for his secondary education. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Pre-Divinity from Ateneo de Manila University, his master’s degree in Theology from the Loyola School of Theology, and both his licentiate and doctorate in Sacred Theology from the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium.

He has also trained at the École Biblique et Archeologique Française de Jerusalem, and is now considered one of the country’s leading Bible experts.



David was ordained a priest in March 12, 1983, in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Fernando (in Pampanga) by Archbishop Oscar Cruz and on May 26, 2006, was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI to be auxiliary bishop of San Fernando and titular bishop of the Diocese of Guardialfiera.[3] He was consecrated as a bishop by Cardinal Gaudencio Borbon Rosales, Archbishop of Manila, with Paciano Aniceto, Archbishop of San Fernando, and Angel Lagdameo, Archbishop of Jaro, as co-consecrators.[4] He became Bishop of Kalookan in January 2016.[5]

He is involved in the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines, having been a member of the their Episcopal Commission on Biblical Apostolate and one of the five bishops sent by the organization to participate in the 2008 Synod of Bishops on the Word of God in the Vatican.[6]

David is noted for being a critic of President Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs.[6][7] On July 19, 2019, the PNPCriminal Investigation and Detection Group filed charges against David, fellow bishops Honesto Ongtioco and Socrates Villegas, and members of the opposition for "sedition, cyber libel, libel, estafa, harboring a criminal, and obstruction of justice".[8][9]

David was elected President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines by its 130 members on July 8, 2021, at the start of a two-day plenary assembly. He had been the Vice President from 2017 until 2021, and succeeded former President Romulo Valles on December 1, 2021.[5][10][11]

In 2023, David was elected as the Asian representative to the Sixteenth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops of seven Members.[12] David was also elected as the vice president of the Federation of Asian Bishops' Conferences in the central committee meeting in Bangkok, succeeding Malcolm Ranjith.[13][14]


  1. ^ David, Randy (March 3, 2019). "Ambo @60". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved December 13, 2022.
  2. ^ Patag, Kristine Joy (April 4, 2019). "Bishop David defends mom after Duterte calls him 'son of a whore'". The Philippine Star. Retrieved December 13, 2022.
  3. ^ "Bishop of Kalookan Diocese Pablo Virgilio Siongco David". UCA News. Retrieved July 8, 2021.
  4. ^ "Bishop Pablo Virgilio Siongco David". David M. Cheney. Retrieved July 8, 2021.
  5. ^ a b Depasupil, William (July 8, 2021). "Staunch Duterte critic named CBCP president". The Manila Times. Retrieved July 8, 2021.
  6. ^ a b Gregorio, Xave (July 8, 2021). "'Drug war' critic Bishop David elected CBCP president". The Philippine Star. Retrieved July 8, 2021.
  7. ^ "Bishop critical of Duterte drug war is new CBCP president". ABS-CBN News. July 8, 2021. Retrieved July 8, 2021.
  8. ^ "Robredo, ilang taga-oposisyon kinasuhan ng PNP-CIDG ukol sa 'Bikoy' videos". ABS-CBN News (in Tagalog). July 19, 2019.
  9. ^ "Sedition raps: Solons, bishop hit 'stupid' PNP". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved July 20, 2019.
  10. ^ "Bishop David officially assumes post as CBCP head". Interaksyon. December 1, 2021. Retrieved December 1, 2021.
  11. ^ Bajo, Anna Felicia (July 8, 2021). "Bishop David, drug war critic, is new CBCP president". GMA News Online. Retrieved July 8, 2021.
  12. ^ Esmaquel, Paterno (January 16, 2024). "CBCP head Bishop David elected to crucial body at Vatican summit". Rappler.
  13. ^ Laqui, Ian (February 23, 2024). "CBCP President elected VP of Federation of Bishops in Asia". The Philippine Star. Retrieved February 26, 2024.
  14. ^ Carvalho, Nirmala (February 24, 2024). "Asia elects new leaders for continental Bishops' Conference". Crux (online newspaper). Retrieved February 26, 2024.
Catholic Church titles Preceded byDeogracias Iñiguez Jr. Bishop of Kalookan 2015–present Incumbent
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Pablo Virgilio David
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