Catholic bishop wants gov’t to stop same-sex marriage rites

Declares that gays who marry have “mental problems”

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MANILA, Philippines – Criticizing the so-called first ceremonial gay unions in Baguio City on Saturday, a Catholic prelate called on the government, on Sunday, to take action against same-sex marriages happening in the country as such matrimonies violated the law.

Baguio Bishop Carlito Cenzon said over Church-run Radio Veritas that the lesbian partners who supposedly exchanged vows in a ceremony, on Sunday, in the city were merely “playing house.”

“A wedding is a holy union of a male and a female. It must be solemnized and registered with the civil registrar… those who got ‘married’ and who led the ceremony have mental problems,” said Cenzon.

He urged the national government to take the necessary steps against same-sex marriages as they violated the Civil Code of the Philippines. “Even the Baguio local government is condemning this kind of act,” added the bishop.

According to Archbishop Emeritus Oscar Cruz, homosexuals remain as integral members of the society who must be respected, but they must also remember about the “inherent and intrinsic finalities of marriage.”

“In the sphere of faith and morals, homosexuals must be loved such as by pointing out and reminding them of the pertinent and existent realities and truths,” said Cruz in a statement.

Cruz, judicial vicar of the National Appellate Matrimonial Tribunal, has emphasized that nature itself has stipulated that marriage is between a man and a woman and the institution of marriage provides them the standard possibility of procreation and upbringing of children.

“The conclusions from [these observation] is obvious: there can be no marriage between two individuals of the same sex, there can be no sexual union between parties of the same sex and there can be no possibility of the birth of children between two persons of the same sex,” he said.

Cruz also warned that the sacredness of marriage, the values system and the family life of Filipinos would crumble if the country emulated other nations permitting same-sex marriage and even divorce.

The bishops were reacting to the ceremony held to supposedly celebrate the unions of seven lesbian partners at a local bar in Baguio City on Saturday. The ceremony, which also stirred the city’s evangelical community, was led by pastors of the Metropolitan Community Church, a Christian church ministering to homosexuals.

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