Pagmata’s rebuttal
(The Philippine Star) - July 1, 2019 - 12:00am

Dear Domini,

I appreciate your effort to show both sides of the controversy, which is what every professional journalist strives to do – with fairness and justice. On the other hand, Bishop’s Suarez letter to you represents only the UCCP administration’s side, a defensive polemical response which is, of course, understandable. I don’t wish, however, to make a national daily a forum for a tit-for-tat exchange which is neither of interest nor enlightening to Philippine Star’s readership. But I’m going to make a rebuttal but for the enlightenment of Pagmata followers and the UCCP constituents, cc you.

With much appreciation 

Rev. Everett Mendoza


Letter to the editor

Bishop Suarez’ letter to Domini published in the June 27th issue of Philippine Star is basically a rehash of general secretary Reuel Marigza’s piece – that it’s legal, constitutional and theological sound – of two years ago. Again, he repeats UCCP Forever’s line that the 150 Pagmata participants in the 25th May celebration pales in comparison to the 4,000 plus attendance at UTS on the same day. Again, the corporate approach of raising funds is justified to save church workers from economic hardship.

It fails to mention, however, the following FACTS: 

1. The Foundation prescribed in the CBL was already in existence precisely to make the church’s real estate assets productive. Bp. Suarez conveniently omitted that the Marigza-Millan-Baconga clique considered the Foundation as having outlived its usefulness, hence the need to create an independent, stock for-profit holdings company with Marigza and Millan and a few other national officers as its incorporators and directors. While the proposed UCCP Holdings Company may not have been actually registered at the SEC, United Shalom Hotels Services Inc. – an independent stock for-profit corporation was established with purposes and powers of a holdings company (see my previous posts).

It is totally and maliciously deceptive to give the Philippine Star readers the impression that the Foundation created by the CBL is actually functioning as intended and that no holding company is in existence. The fact is that the Foundation is defunct and that USHSI is alive, functioning, replacing the Foundation – plus more: an independent holdings company. 

2. Bishop Suarez is telling the whole world that UCCP is led by duly constituted national officials. But he conveniently hides the fact that these elected national officials were not elected as UCCP’s board of trustees, making them the legal owners and administrators of the Church’s properties and legal institutions as per the Corporation Code of the Philippines. He also hides the fact that the General Assembly is legally and constitutionally denied the right to intervene in the affairs of USHSI. In other words, they were not elected with powers to sell, lease, of whatever they wish to do with every property held by UCCP Inc. – which they actually can under Philippine laws. 

3. He also cited a parable of Jesus about the Talents. He is making himself a laughing stock among biblical scholars and theologians for applying it to justify the corporatization of the Church’s stewardship program. Whoever biblical professors that taught him should be squirming on their bed or grave. Dr. Capulong and I never claimed to have monopoly of theological wisdom. So, why doesn’t he cite a single reputable biblical scholar/theologian to support his views on stewardship? He does not because he could not because he doesn’t have the professional training or gift to interpret the Scriptures.

 Other than arguing the financial advantages of a corporate approach to property development, the national leadership’s mouthpiece in this Bishop doesn’t tell us that it is good for the Church’s ministry and mission – nothing about the meaning and the imperatives of the gospel which is the church’s reason for being. If that’s all that the Bishop-spokesman can do, it’s reasonable to believe that the UCCP’s national leaders have no idea what the church of Jesus Christ is.

  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
Login is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

or sign in with