…the CBCP is not the Church…

In the raging controversy over RH, many commentators, including pro-RH ones, often miss the point that the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) is not the Church but merely an organization of its bishops. The Second Vatican Council has established that the Church consists of all baptized Catholics – lay and clergy, bishops, priests, nuns, and ordinary people. The anti-RH position definitely does not qualify as THE Church position because, despite the bishops and some institutions, the majority of Filipino Catholics support the enactment of a law that provides family planning services to all Filipinos especially the poor.

Dr. Alberto G. Romualdez


  1. Jun Viray

    Certainly, the CBCP is not the Church as the name suggests. But for all intents and purposes it represents the Catholic population in the country as laymen look up to them for spiritual guidance. Being such, it is but proper that they lead us and we follow them. I for one would rather be inclined to be influenced by their teachings and be with them in times like these!

  2. The CBCP, however, has the job to teach the rest of the church what the church believes. To say that they are not the church seems to me like an assertion of a certain degree of freedom of its members to disagree with church teaching–and still claim to be a member of it. Should a Buddhist who has chosen to disagree with the idea of reincarnation still describe himself a Buddhist? Granted, a certain degree of free thought is, in this age, kinda sorta acceptable, even healthy. The church’s history is peppered with personalities that have disagreed with church doctrines and in the process became instrumental in starting change. Is this what catholics expect will happen with regards to the RH bill? That the church will eventually bend to popular opinion? What is it in being a member of the Catholic church that’s so attractive that anit-RH members, vehemently opposed to church leadership, and hence–opposed to fundamental catholic doctrine, that they will hang on to their “catholic-ness” in a fight to the death? What is the threshold of hypocrisy? Going to church on sunday, receive sacraments from the hand of a church-annointed church leader, and curse him when he preaches against the RH-bill? How far can we argue that religion is a democracy?