(SEPTEMBER 17, 2019) – A religious group on Tuesday described as historical revisionism the proposed bills seeking to legalize divorce in the Philippines, asserting that marriage is a concept that came from God and not from the state.
During the first Senate hearing on the proposed measures, Pastor Augusto Kho of the Intercessors for the Philippines said absolute divorce challenges the power not only of the 1987 Constitution but that of God.
“Somehow it will become a historical revisionism. Kung titingnan ang marriage, ‘di galing sa estado, ang marriage ay galing sa Diyos,” he said.
“In other words kung titignan mo, marriage is not being legislated by the state, it is being legislated by divine order of God. And anyone who destroys the divine order of God is destroying mankind,” he added.
Senator Risa Hontiveros, meanwhile, clarified that the proposed bills do not violate the 1987 Constitution.
“To reiterate ‘yung bills na ito are founded on Contitutional principles and recognizing that other principle of separation of Church and State,” she explained.
Hontiveros, along with Senator Pia Cayetano, has pushed for the legalization of divorce to give individuals from a failed marriage a second chance in life.
The Philippines is the only country apart from the Vatican where divorce has not been legalized.
Aside from Kho’s group, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) and the Alliance for Family Foundation registered their opposition to absolute divorce.
“The proposed bills are contrary to the provisions of the 1987 Constitution, which endeavors to strengthen and protect the family as basic autonomous social institution and marriage as a invaluable social institution,” said Joel Arzaga, vice president of the Alliance for Family Foundation.
Fenny Tatad of CBCP, meanwhile, said marriage and families are in “serious trouble” in almost every country where divorce was legalized.
“Divorce has not been a solution to the problem, it has become the problem,” Tatad said.