Escudero wants to create interfaith cemeteries nationwide if elected
MANILA, Philippines – Sorsogon Gov. Francis “Chiz” Escudero said Friday that he plans to institutionalize the establishment of interfaith cemeteries nationwide should he get reelected to the Senate in the May polls.
In a statement, Escudero said he seeks to do this through legislation in a bid to bring people of all faiths together in one place in every province and municipality across the country.
This, he said, would allow them to bury their loved ones according to their traditions and beliefs similar to what is available in Sorsogon, which has two interfaith cemeteries located in the towns of Pilar and Casiguran.
“Nais kong maging institusyonal ang pagtatayo ng interfaith cemetery sa mga probinsiya at kabayanan upang maramdaman ng ating mga kababayan ang inklusibong pagkalinga ng pamahalaan nang walang diskriminasyon at pag-aalintana sa paniniwala at relihiyon,”
(I want the establishment of interfaith cemeteries in the provinces and towns to be institutional so that our countrymen can feel the inclusive care of the government without discrimination and disregard for belief and religion.)
“Madalas kasi puno na ang mga pampublikong sementeryo at kadalasan din ang may puwang na lang ay ang nasa pribado at semeteryong pang-Katoliko. Ngunit kung minsan hindi rin nito daliang natutugunan ang mga pangangailangan at mga rekisitos ng ibang relihiyon at paniniwala,” he added.
(Public cemeteries are often full and most of the time, the only ones left are those in private and Catholic cemeteries. But sometimes, it also does not readily meet the needs and requirements of other religions and beliefs.)
Escudero also emphasized the importance of interfaith cemeteries, particularly for indigenous peoples (IPs) and Muslims, who adhere to traditional funeral rites based on their longstanding cultures, customs, and religious beliefs.
Under his proposal, local government units and leaders of various religious denominations will have control and supervision over these interfaith cemeteries. – Jericho Zafra, INQUIRER.net trainee
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