Philippine Daily Inquirer / AM June 23, Palatino said he was withdrawing House Bill No. , or An Act Empowering Heads of Offices and Departments to Strictly Implement the Constitutional Provisions on Religious Freedom in. House Bill “Religious Freedom In Government Offices Act” He cited Section 5 of the Philippine Constitution’s Bill of Rights that “the free. Manila, Philippines – Kabataan Partylist led by Rep. Raymond Palatino withdrew on Friday, June 22, its House Bill , or the so-called.

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Posted on 26 June by Jong Atmosfera. IbllIsagani A. Raymond Palatinosecularismseparation of church and state. While this is definitely sad news for the advocates of secularism, the fact that one legislator actually had the guts to file a bill like this in a country where the Roman Catholic Church holds considerable influence in politics is already an achievement in itself.

Religious freedom is a tricky issue because it is comprised of two principles incorporated in a single provision of the Philippine Constitution: Non-establishment and Free Exercise.

III Section 5, the two sides of religious freedom are laid out as follows:. No law shall be made respecting an establishment of religion, phiilippines prohibiting the free exercise thereof.

The first part is the establishment also called the non-establishment clause. Jurisprudence has expanded it to mean beyond that of congress making philiplines that establish a state religion.

With this jurisprudence and possibly othersthe non establishment clause was interpreted to encompass other government actions and not phililpines those having to do with legislation. As for the free exercise clause, the rest of Art. III Section 5 states: No religious test shall be required for the exercise of civil or political rights.

The right to religious profession and worship has a two-fold aspect, houe. The first is bi,l as long as the belief is confined within the realm of thought.

The second is subject to regulation where the belief is translated into external acts that affect the public welfare. As long as it can be shown that the exercise of the right does not impair the public welfare, the attempt of the State to regulate or prohibit such right would be an unconstitutional encroachment.

After reading the full text of the now dead House BillI believe it needed some revisions because it seemed incomplete — and yes, unconstitutional. The entire bill was only four pages long including the two-page explanatory note, and the meat of the bill can be found in Philipoines 4 where the heads of government philippines, departments, and bureaus are empowered to ensure that:.


Section 4 a does not need any revision because it does not seek philippies ban personal prayers but only religious ceremonies within the premises and perimeter of and publicly-owned spaces within government offices, departments, and bureaus — and not on public parks and streets since religious activities are not prohibited in these places.

Elathe Supreme Court ruled that:. Public squares, roads, highways and buildings are devoted to public use, and, as such, are open to all, without distinction. Incidentally to such use, religious acts may be performed in said public property… So long as the use of public property for religious purposes is incidental and temporary, and such as to be reasonably compatible with the use to which other members of the community are similarly entitled, or may be authorized to make, the injunction in section 23 3 of Article VI of the Constitution is not infringed.

The fatal defect of House Bill gave our theocratic opponents a legitimate excuse to suppress it and prevented our country from reaching a significant legislative milestone towards a more secular government. But as freethinkers, we get to learn from our mistakes as well as those of others with whom we share advocacies. And since the issue of religious freedom and especially the non-establishment of religion have now been brought to public debate, the proposed Freedom of Religion in Government Offices Act did not live and die in vain.

While we can wait for another legislator to file a similar bill in the near future, for the meantime we can also hope for a jurisprudence that would declare religious ceremonies and large puilippines in government offices unconstitutional if we take the issue all the way to the Supreme Court.

Can I be a Filipino Freethinker? Freethinking Community We’re the largest philuppines most active group of non-believers and progressive believers in the Philippines. How do I join? Come and meet with us; our usual meetups are held every two weeks. No two Freethinkers are alike. Get to know some of pnilippines regulars. We practice a great mix of action, education, and healthy discourse. How do I participate? Help by volunteering your time, expertise, philppines resources for our causes.

The RH Bill Fight for reproductive health, responsible parenthood, and population development. Pass the RH Bill! Read up on the Bill. Check out the definitive RH Bill portal to learn more about the issue. Aquino to endorse RH Bill.


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Freethinkers speak at DLSU. Science- based answers and debunking conservative Catholic claims. Reality is more fascinating than what humans can grasp. Join the FF Saturnalia Party Categorized PoliticsReligionSecularism. Raymond Palatinosecularismseparation of church and state Kabataan Rep. III Section 5, the two sides of religious freedom are laid out as follows: Cruz wrote in Constitutional Law: The entire bill was only four pages long including the two-page explanatory note, and the meat of the bill can be found in Section 4 where the heads of government offices, departments, and bureaus are empowered to ensure that: Elathe Supreme Court ruled that: The death of a single bill in no way spells the death of secularism itself.

So let us continue the fight. The opinions in this post do not necessarily represent the position of the Filipino Freethinkers. Profile cancel Sign in with Twitter Sign in with Facebook. View June 28, View June 26, Popular Latest Comments Tags Subscribe. Deconstructing the Most Common Dutertian Arguments. FF Saturnalia Party How about this hypocrisy: Claiming to be a “freeth