In the midst of the ongoing online petition thumping two Catholic prelates, netizens have voiced out their two cents in the Separation of Church and State.
Prompted by different understandings on the said phrase, people supported the petition demanding the resignation of Villegas as CBCP President and archbishop of Lingayen-Dagupan, expressing that it’s high time for the Church to stop ‘interfering in the politics of the country when we have the separation of the state and church.’
On the other hand, some people strongly opposed it, believing that the Church should stand firm and stand up for the Faith to protect the people now more than ever.
To come up with a sensible agreement which side is politically and morally correct, we have to understand the Constitutional concept of the Separation of Church and State.
It does not pertain that the Church may not interfere in the affairs of the government. It pertains to the three clauses of Article III, Section 5 of the 1987 Constitution:
Violation or no?
With the two bishops having outspoken nature regarding political and national concerns, the public is left to decide if their statements are in fact a violation to the Constitutional Concept.
Together with Archbishop’s resignation they also demanded to strip the title of bishop emeritus from Cruz’s name.
Although the title is an honorary one, granted to retired bishops and archbishops, so if approved, it will not have any apparent effect, for Cruz does not hold authority over any diocese.
Its goal is to reach 10,000 supporters. So far, it has already garnered almost 9,000 online signatures. However, a bishop’s resignation will not be based by the number of the signatures of the petitioners, but if entertained, will be based of the acts or omissions committed by the said bishop. (Luke Godoy)