CBCP President and Davao Archbishop Romulo Valles, DD (Photo from CBCP News)
In a bold move, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) voiced out its concern on the proposed divorce bill that recently passed the third and final reading at the House of Representatives.
According to a statement released by Davao Archbishop and CBCP President Romulo Valles, there seems to be a problem with the association that some lawmakers are making with the approval of divorce and the country’s development.
“No doubt, those who associate divorce with being progressive would laud our legislators who are currently raring to pass a divorce bill in Congress. With due respect to them, we beg them to make room for more reasoned debates on the issue,” he said, urging the Congress to conduct further consultation with their constituents and the experts in the field to “consider the many implications of the issue, not just on families but on the Philippine society as a whole.”
The religious leader also acknowledged that while there are people who notice them for supposedly violating the law on the separation of the Church and the State, they are merely doing their moral obligation of protecting the sanctity of marriage as a blessed union of spouses.
“We do not mean to interfere with the dynamics of a political entity such as our country’s legislature. We are fully aware of the limits of our influence as spiritual and moral leaders of the ecclesial communities entrusted to our care. We also acknowledge plurality and diversity of moral opinions on the matter at issue,” Valles said, adding that divorce is merely a quick legal remedy for “failed marriages”.
Last March 19, the lower house approved House Bill No. 7303 entitled “An Act Instituting Absolute Divorce and Dissolution of Marriage in the Philippines” after it gained 134 votes on the positive, and 57 votes on the negative.
Incidentally, the Roman Catholic Church also celebrates the Solemnity of St. Joseph, Husband of Mary, on the same date.
Read the full statement here: CBCP STATEMENT ON THE DIVORCE BILL