HomeDiocesan ReportsPriest stresses need for ‘critical collaboration’ of Church, State

Priest stresses need for ‘critical collaboration’ of Church, State

The executive director of Caritas Manila, the social action arm of the archdiocese, stressed the need for “critical collaboration” between the government and the Church to face social issues.

Father Anton Pascual of Caritas Manila said the Church and State should always enter into “collaboration” and “dialogue.”

“[The] Church’s relationship with the State is what we call critical collaboration,” said the priest, adding that it is essential to “work together.”

Father Pascual said the separation of Church and State is “true” in the context of organization, leadership, and resources “but no separation in the context of [service] especially to the poor, the common good, and the environment.”

The priest made the statement following the pronouncements of lawyer Salvador Panelo, legal counsel of President Rodrigo Duterte, criticizing the country’s Catholic bishops for denouncing the new anti-terrorism law.

Panelo lambasted the Catholic Church for “violating the principle of separation of Church and State” for exerting “religious influence or pressure” on the Supreme Court to rule against the new law.

Bishop Broderick Pabillo, apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Manila, earlier challenged the government to file a case against the country’s prelates.

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“If it is really a violation, then file charges against us. We are challenging them if there was really a violation,” said Bishop Pabillo.

“Don’t we have a right to speak on the failures of the government? Just because we are in Church we cannot speak? We are also citizens,” he said.

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