Zubiri says shortened process of annulment is more acceptable than divorce
MANILA, Philippines — Majority of senators are opposed to legalizing divorce and instead prefer a proposal to streamline the annulment process “allowed by our faith and belief,” Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri said Friday.
Zubiri issued the statement following a House committee’s approval of a bill instituting divorce in the Philippines.
The Philippines and the Vatican are the only remaining states that disallow divorce.
“Marami sa amin ay tutol sa divorce dahil ayaw po natin na maging katulad sa ibang bansa,” Zubiri told reporters in an interview.
(Most of us are against divorce because we don’t want to be end up like other countries.)
“Ang ayaw po natin sa divorce ay parang pito-pito lang, parang ano lang ‘Sige divorce na. Mag-asawa tayo ngayon pagkatapos ng limang araw o limang buwan ay pwede naman tayong mag-divorce.’ ayaw po natin yan,” he added.
(What we don’t like about divorce is it seems to be an easy way out, it’s like ‘Okay let’s file for divorce. We’re married now and then after five days or five months, we can file for divorce).
He said shortening the process of Church-decreed annulment would be a “more accepted” option for his colleagues in the Senate.
“This annulment process is a Church-allowed process. Ito po’y proseso sa simbahan at hindi po ‘to labag sa ating relihiyon o sa paniniwala bilang isang Katoliko,” he said.
“This is not as controversial as divorce,” he added.
He said Senate Bill No. 1059, which he filed in September last year, seeks to shorten and simplify the process of annulling marriages in the country by recognizing the civil effects of a Church-allowed annulment for couples who have irreconcilable differences.
“Ang layunin po nito ay i-simplify yung pag-recognize ng Church-allowed annulment,” Zubiri said.
(This seeks to simplify the process of recognizing Church-allowed annulment).
Under the bill, the final judgment or decree of annulment or dissolution issued by the proper church or religious sect should be recorded with 30 days in the appropriate civil registry.
He said his proposal is also in line with Pope Francis’ call to make Church annulment shorter and easier to avail.
“Sa napakhabang proseso ng ating simbahan pagdating po sa annulment ay pagkatapos ‘pag na-annul na po kayo ng simbahan, dadaan pa kayo ng butas ng karayom at napakahabang, napakamahal na proseso sa korte natin para magkaroon din ng state annulment which all in all could take as long as 10 years,” Zubiri noted.
(With how long the Church takes to annul a marriage and then after the Church annuls your marriage you then have to go through an eye of a needle, a very long and expensive process of the court to secure a state annulment which all in all could take as long as 10 years).