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PHILIPPINE CHURCH SHOULD NOT ENDORSE POLITICAL CANDIDATES

MANILA, Philippines -  An archbishop said neither the Church nor lay groups should endorse candidates in the May 13 elections, but said those who supported the law on Reproductive Health should be rejected by voters.
“The Church must guide and not dictate. The Church must unite and not contribute to the division. The Church must pray and not add to the confusion. The Church must heal and not inflict hurts. 
The Church must be in the world but not belong to it,” Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan in Central Luzon said in a pastoral letter.
Villegas pointed out that when the Church endorses candidates in elections, its spiritual mission will be compromised and religion will be “reduced” to a mere political contest.
“We will be lonesome widows after the elections for marrying partisan politics during the campaign,” the prelate said.
He explained that if the Church endorses a candidate, the latter may win the elections but it is the Church which “always ends up loser” because its mission will be tarnished with the “stain of the mundane.”

“The Church should not be perceived as winning or losing an election. The Church must be beyond such,” Villegas said. “Religions that waltz with politics will die by politics.”
Instead of endorsing certain candidates, Villegas said he prefers that Church and lay Catholic leaders observe certain parameters that they can endorse to parishioner when choosing a candidate.

Source: Gulfnews...More..
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