Church off-limits to politics

With the start of the campaign period, a number of dioceses have issued a directive prohibiting the posting of political tarpaulins in church premises.

Among these is the Diocese of Balanga in Bataan, which is headed by Bishop Ruperto Santos.

Bishop Ruperto Santos (CBCP / MANILA BULLETIN)
Bishop Ruperto Santos (CBCP / MANILA BULLETIN)

“We have pastoral directive that there will be no political tarpaulins in any church patio and fences,” he said in an interview.

Santos said a political candidate will also not be allowed to offer during the offertory processions.

Anyone who is working for political candidate and has any parish position must take a leave of absence from their church duties, he said.

Last December, Caceres Archbishop Rolando Tirona also issued a similar directive in his archdiocese.

“It is prohibited to allow the posting of any candidate’s or political party’s political advertisement (tarpaulin, banners, stickers, etc) in church property including political rallies in church premises,” read his circular letter addressed to his priests.

Tirona prohibited his priests from conducting mass weddings, Baptisms, and Confirmation under the sponsorship of any political candidate or political party.

Priests are also prohibited to solicit from political candidates or political parties donation for church renovation…

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