Viral Filipino priest Fr. Ferdinand Santos depressed with accidental celebrity status, wants to go back to US

Published September 1, 2021, 11:51 PM

by Robert Requintina

Fr. Ferdinand Santos taken in 2007 (Facebook)

Fr. Ferdinand Santos whose good-looking pictures went viral in the country recently admitted he got depressed with the instant celebrity status as he thought of going back to the US to avoid what suddenly happened to him.

In an exchange of text messages, Fr. Ferdi said that he came home to serve the poor, to live in a very poor parish and to be poor – “that was what I discerned God wanted from me for more than a year now.”


“However, I have no idea what suddenly happened as I have not even stepped out of a house/bldg since I arrived on July 30th,” he said.

Fr. Ferdi also lamented that he hasn’t seen his parents and siblings at their homes since he arrived.

Fr. Ferdi with Bishop Honesto Ongtioco (right)

“I’ve been holed up in Bishop Ness’ house here in Cubao. He’s been very kind and caring, allowing me to ‘hide’ here,” he said.

The priest added: “I was depressed earlier because I was wondering why all this was happening, and I asked the Lord to simply let me return to the States and live a quiet life.”

When he thought about this, money started to pour in as the faithful pledged to help him raise money for the poor, he said.

“Today I raised 125k, tomorrow more. In fact, I plan on raising a ton of money all for the poor and for needy parishes here in Cubao as well as the hungry,” Fr. Ferdi said.


However, the priest said that he refused to be a celebrity. “I WILL NOT BE TEMPTED to becoming a celebrity and confusing what HE wants – which I now know – with what would be beneficial to ME (even if accidentally).

“Accidental celebrity is still celebrity.

“And my response to it is “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.” (Matthew 4:10)”I will forever say NO to celebrity, even if it CAN BE USED for good.



“And so the whole of Philippine society can rage and bang on my door and try to coax me in every way to come out and focus the attention on me and put ME in the limelight, and my answer will still be NO.

“It is not what will accomplish what the Lord wants.”