HomeNewsPriest stresses need for dialogue on policies affecting country such as divorce

Priest stresses need for dialogue on policies affecting country such as divorce

"These are issues that should be discussed in the interest of the Filipinos, not in the interest of the Church”

An official of the Episcopal Commission on Public Affairs of the Philippine bishops’ conference stressed the need for dialogue on issues and policies, such as divorce, that affect the people and the country.

Father Jerome Secillano, executive secretary of the commission, said the Church is open to talk with legislators on issues such as the proposed passage of a law legalizing divorce.

He said it is important to share with lawmakers the Catholic Church’s stand on the issue.

“The Church is willing …. These are issues that should be discussed in the interest of the Filipinos, not in the interest of the Church,” said the priest over Radio Veritas 846.

He said the proposed measure is of interest to every Filipino family, and “they should be informed about it.”

The country’s senators last week said they are inviting Church leaders to attend the next hearing on the proposed divorce law now pending in Congress.

The legislators said the presence of those opposed to divorce, specially Catholic Church leaders, is essential so that they can air their side.

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“The Church is always willing, but there should be an invitation because we cannot just gate crash in the hearing,” said Father Secillano.

Last year, the Catholic Faith Defenders, a group of priests and lay people who defend the doctrines of the Catholic Church, vowed to oppose the passage of a law that will legalize divorce in the country.

The group said divorce is against the teachings of the Lord that says in the Gospel of Mark 10:9 that “what God has joined together, no human being must separate.”

The faith defenders said divorce will only destroy the foundation of marriage.

“The essence of marriage is its permanence and indissolubility, without which, marriage becomes meaningless and not different from mere partnership contracts,” read the CFD statement.

Instead of the legalization of divorce, the group urged legislators to pass laws that will strengthen “family values education programs” that will involve religious leaders.

The group said pre-marital and marital character development programs should also be in place instead of pressing for the use of contraception.

Several legislators have already filed proposed bills on divorce among their priority measures for the 19th Congress.

The farthest that a divorce bill has gotten in Congress was in 2018, when it was passed by the House of Representatives.

The measure, however, did not pass in the Senate.

During the elections campaign, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said he is open to “take the next step” and legalize divorce, but urged that the process should not be made easy.

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