Bishops urge faithful: Shun vices, spend money wisely
Three Catholic bishops have urged their faithful to keep off vices and to be wiser in using their hard-earned income.
Most Rev. Ricardo L. Baccay of the Diocese of Alaminos, Pangasinan, said in a recent interview that people should shun vices and spend their money instead on more fruitful endeavors.
Baccay made the appeal as he noted developments in passing tax measures intended to curb vices and other bad habits. For one, he referred to the Sin Tax Reform Law where lawmakers have proposed and passed House Bill No. 4144 which imposes higher sin tax rates than intended in the original provisions of the law.
“In addition to what Archbishop [Oscar] Cruz said earlier, if you smoke a pack of cigarettes daily, you more or less spend P45 each time. That equates to P1,350 a month that may be added to your family’s monthly spending,” Baccay said.
Dagupan Archbishop Emeritus Oscar Cruz, as stated in earlier news reports, shared the same view as he reportedly praised HB 4144 as a “pro-health” measure in his program over Radio Veritas.
The vocal archbishop cited data from the Social Weather Stations (SWS) that purportedly showed 10 Filipinos dying daily from smoking-related diseases.
He stressed that the government’s objective is to ultimately stop vices and urged citizens to spend their money on more important needs.
Archbishop Emeritus Diosdado Talamayan of the Archdiocese of Tuguegarao, meanwhile, commended lawmakers for passing the bill since it helps Filipino farmers in their livelihood.
Talamayan hails from Cagayan, one of the tobacco-rich provinces in Northern Luzon, where many churchgoers are tobacco farmers who depend on the crop to support their respective families.
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