Cebu News

Legislators who voted for divorce: We’ll remember you in elections - Church commission

Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon, Caecent No-ot Magsumbol - The Freeman
Legislators who voted for divorce: We�ll remember you in elections - Church commission
Officials of the Commission on the Laity, Commission on Family and Life, and HLI Pilipinas in Cebu City express their opposition to the divorce bill during a press conference yesterday.
Aldo Banaynal

CEBU, Philippines — The Roman Catholic Archdiocesan of Cebu’s Commission on the Laity has pledged to continue the fight against the divorce bill until the next elections, by especially remembering those who voted for and against it.

Commission head Fe Mantuhac-Barino said in a press conference they would fight to stop the passing of the bill into law.

“Among paningkamutan nga maabot gyud ni sa public…for everyone to know that kita dinhi sa Sugbo, the cradle of Christianity oppose this bill on divorce,” said Barino.

Her group also released a statement opposing the legalization of divorce in the country.

“With God's grace, reconciliation and forgiveness are possible and advised within marriage. We recognize that couples may face difficulties and conflicts, but they should be encouraged to seek help, counseling, and support to address these issues rather than resorting to divorce,” the group said.

“Marriage vows are taken by the spouses before God…. Divorce undermines the seriousness and sacredness of these vows. The divorce law negates the divine command that no man should separate what God has joined together. Here, man puts himself above God,” it added.

Barino also said that “divorce violates this sacred bond, nullifying the permanence and indissolubility of the marital union”. She believes the Cebuanos would not allow this.

“I still believe, kitang mga Cebuano, kitang mga Filipino mahadlukon sa Ginoo,” she said.

She said that Roman Catholics may not be known for block voting like others but the commission would bring the fight to the politicians in the next elections.

“Kami sa Commission on the Laity, we will encourage the faithful, diha sa mga parokya to remember those congressmen who voted for the passing of that bill…. We will remember them,” Barino said.

She said the holding of the press conference as well as their statement have the blessings of Archbishop Jose Palma before he left for abroad.

Among Cebu’s legislators at the House of Representatives, Congressmen Pablo John Garcia (3rd district) and Duke Frasco (5th district) were the ones who voted for the divorce bill, while Congresswoman Cindi Chan of the Lone District of Lapu-Lapu City was on an official trip to Tawi-Tawi and did not cast her vote.

Based on the advisory released by the House of Representatives, there were 131 congressmen, including Garcia and Frasco, who favored House Bill 9349.

The Cebuano national legislators who voted against the bill are Edu Rama (Cebu City south district), Rachel del Mar (Cebu City north district), Emmarie Ouano-Dizon (Mandaue City lone district), Rhea Gullas (Cebu 1st district); Edsel Galeos (Cebu 2nd district), Janice Salimbangon (Cebu 4th district), Daphne Lagon (Cebu 6th district), and Peter John Calderon (Cebu 7th district).

“May God, who established the sacrament of marriage by the power of the Holy Spirit, protect us from the enemies that destroy family and life. Mother May, intercede for us,” read the commission’s statement.

“And we will also remember those who fought for us,” Barino said. — Rowena Capistrano/RHM (FREEMAN)

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