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Church won’t honor same-sex unions, stresses CBCP exec

The State could not force any church to honor something is against its belief, says Fr. Jerome Secillano of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.

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Unbending church when it comes to LGBTQIA human rights?

The State could not force any church to honor something is against its belief. This is according to Fr. Jerome Secillano, the executive secretary of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) Episcopal Commission on Public Affairs, when he was interviewed by Dobol B TV.

Secillano’s statement came after a bill – Senate Bill 449 or the proposed Civil Unions Act – was filed in the Upper House to institutionalize civil union in the Philippines; this could benefit LGBTQIA people in relationships as it would recognize their partnerships as equal to opposite-sex couples.

Kailangan malaman natin ano ba ang nilalaman ng panukala ni Sen. Robin Padilla kasi possible naman na hindi naman din talaga pinipilit na pati yung mga religious groups ay talaga i-honor yung ganyang panukala (We need to know the content of Senator Robin Padilla’s bill because it is possible that it is not forcing religious groups to honor such proposal),” Secillano said.

Padilla filed SB 449.

Magiging infirmity ‘yan. Ang ibig kong sabihin ng infirmity, puwede maging violation yan ng religious right din. Ano ba ang karapatan ng isang relihiyon? Na hindi siya puwersahin ng Estado na gumawa ng bagay-bagay na labag sa kanyang paniniwala (It would become an infirmity. What I mean is it could be a violation of religious rights. A church has a right not to be forced by the State to do actions that are against its beliefs),” Secillano added.

The CBCP official added that even if the bill actually becomes law, his church could still not honor same-sex unions. For him, legality is different from morality, and his church’s stand remains, i.e. that union should be only between male and female.

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