Jolo church blasts hit as ‘most heinous desecration’

Jolo church blasts hit as ‘most heinous desecration’

The scene outside the Jolo Cathedral after two bombs exploded Sunday. AFP WESTERN MINDANAO COMMAND

By Roy Lagarde

January 27, 2019

Manila, Philippines

The deadly blasts at a cathedral on the Philippine island of Jolo have been described by two bishops as the “most heinous desecration” of a sacred place.

Sunday’s incident killed 15 civilians and five soldiers when two bomb explosions hit the Jolo Cathedral while Sunday Mass was ongoing.

Five soldiers and several civilians were among those killed, authorities said, adding that more than 70 others were injured.

Cardinal Orlando Quevedo and Archbishop-elect Angelito Lampon deplored the attacks made “on a sacred day, and at a sacred moment of worship”.

“It is truly a satanic act that all sacred religions must condemn,” said the two former religious leaders of Jolo.

“This is the action of evil people with utter disregard for the sacredness of human life and of human dignity,” they said.

Quevedo previously served as parish priest of Jolo while Lampon is the vicariate’s erstwhile bishop.

Lampon succeeded Quevedo as archbishop of Cotabato after the cardinal resigned from the post in November last year.

The church leaders also appealed to authorities “to flush out the perpetrators of this barbaric crime and bring them to justice”.

“We entrust the innocent victims to the Lord’s compassion and pray for their grieving families,” they said.