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Being non-partisan not the same as being neutral — CBCP

/ 06:54 PM March 06, 2022

MANILA, Philippines — The Church being non-partisan is not the same as being neutral, an official of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has said as he voiced disapproval for political candidates who are “thieves” and “liars.”

“Is the Church being neutral by being non-partisan? I guess people have to understand that being non-partisan is not the same as being neutral,” Fr. Jerome Secillano, the CBCP’s public affairs committee executive secretary, said in a Facebook post on Thursday.

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Secillano said the Church has always been brave in expressing its stand against evil, injustice and lies.

“She is against evil. She is not neutral,” he said.

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According to the CBCP official, being non-partisan means the Church’s loyalty is neither with the candidate nor with any political party, but with the people.

He said “many are muddling this distinction and are using the Church to advance their agenda, to get the institution to support their candidate.”

“It is hypocritical to say that their candidate is the only best hope for the people. I say, let the people decide who to them is the best after being guided, formed and informed through a series of discernment,” Secillano said.

Secillano also said that the loyalty of the Church clergy “lies in the institution that calls us to a life of service.”

“We should never allow ourselves to be used as tools for partisan politics. Our personal choice doesn’t make us political tools, especially, if we keep them privately,” he added.

“To be neither neutral nor partisan, my principle is clear; no to incompetent, unjust and self-serving politicians. No to thieves and liars too!” he stressed.

For Secillano, the Church “should continue forming consciences for a mature political exercise but leave the endorsement to the Lay faithful.”

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TAGS: 2022 elections, Catholic Church, CBCP, Fr. Jerome Secillano
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