Lay church workers told to resign if they run in brgy polls

Lay church workers told to resign if they run in brgy polls

Cubao Bishop Honesto Ongtioco. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE DIOCESE OF CUBAO

APRIL 22, 2018

MANILA, PHILIPPINES

Lay church officials and workers will be stripped of their posts if they will run in the forthcoming barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections, a bishop has warned.

Bishop Honesto Ongtioco of Cubao, in a pastoral statement, said those running for elected posts will be considered resigned to stop perceptions that the institution will be used for partisan activities.

“We wish to guard the Church against possible accusation of critics for undue advantage of lay candidates, who might be perceived of using the Church for partisan exercise,” he said.

The prelate said those who will lose the election can reapply for their positions in the parish or diocesan organizations but are subject to parish priest approval.

On the other hand, those elected and still want to serve in their parish cannot serve as an official of any church organizations but as ordinary member only.

Despite this, the bishop said the church is encouraging lay people to play an active role in partisan politics.

“This is in line with the mission of the Church to renew the political affairs according to Gospel principles and values,” he said.

Ongtioco added that they are even asking them to use a set of guidance in their participation in the political life such as the pursuit of the common good and the promotion of social justice.