Cardinal Jaime Sin received a hero's burial at the Manila Cathedral Tuesday. Philippine political leaders, foreign and local clergy, diplomats and hundreds of Roman Catholic followers attended the funeral mass. Thousands more Filipinos endured the heat outside the church for a last glimpse of the once influential leader.
A horse-drawn carriage carried the cardinal's wooden casket, adorned with white flowers and draped with the Philippine flag, around the outside of the cathedral. Soldiers then fired a 21-gun salute before the casket was buried in a crypt inside the cathedral.
Manila Archbishop Gaudencio Rosales paid tribute to a man best known for his pivotal role in toppling two presidents. "Remembering our beloved Cardinal Sin, we know we have to continue pursuing his dream for a people who still hunger to be free from every form of tyranny," he said.
Cardinal Sin, a strong critic of corruption in government, was credited with a central role in ousting dictator Ferdinand Marcos in 1986 and president Joseph Estrada in 2001. Both presidents were accused of plundering government coffers.
The two women whom Cardinal Sin helped install in the presidency, former president Corazon Aquino, who replaced Mr. Marcos, and Mr. Estrada's successor, incumbent president Gloria Arroyo, were among those who honored the cardinal Tuesday. Ms. Arroyo currently faces allegations of election fraud and corruption herself.
Cardinal Sin served as leader of the Catholic Church for nearly 30 years until his retirement in 2003. He died on June 22 at the age of 76.