Malacañang not offended by Pope’s remarks

/ 07:11 AM February 22, 2019
Palace on call for NYC chair's resignation: He knows what to do

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo. INQUIRER file photo / JOAN BONDOC

Malacañang is not offended by Pope Francis’ recent statement that those who denounce the Catholic Church are “friends, cousins and relatives of the devil.”

Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo even hailed Francis as “one of the better critics of the Church,” in reference to the Pontiff’s criticisms of the misdeeds of priests and bishops.


At a press briefing on Thursday, Panelo said the Palace did not think that President Duterte was being alluded to by the Pope.

Duterte has been lashing out against men of the cloth involved in sexual abuse. He recently denounced what he described as the “hypocrisy” of the Church and said that bishops should be attacked.


‘Critics cannot be evil’

Asked if he agreed with the Pope’s statement, Panelo said: “If I will agree with that, then the Pope will be referring to himself also because he is a critic.”

“When you criticize, you cannot be evil,” he added.

“[The Pope] criticizes members of the Church who are engaged in what he perceives to be immorality,” he said.

Panelo said Francis was also a critic when he asked members of the Church to leave if they could not be celibate.

“But it does not mean also that when you criticize you are evil. You’re just expressing concern and opposition to certain irregular behavior,” he said.  —CHRISTINE O. AVENDAÑO

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Church, critics, devil, duterte, Malacañang, Panelo, Pope
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

© Copyright 1997-2019 | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.