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ASG Marissa Dela Cruz Gala!"i!es
M#s$ Re%. Bis&#' (ra!)is Le*ar"a Mar)& 1+, ,-1.
,. Pi!a*la/a!a! S$.
Sa! Jua! Ci$0
Dear Fr. Legarda,
Here is the opinion you requested. The facts, gathered from you and your documents, are
as follows:
Your church placed on the front wall of the Pinaglaanan !hrine a tarpaulin which
contains the names of those who "oted for the appro"al of the #H ill under the heading of
$Team Patay”. !usequently, %&'(L(% had as)ed the Diocese of !an *uan to remo"e the
mentioned tarpaulin ecause it allegedly "iolates a rule under the election laws.
The issue now is whether you will heed to the %&'(L(%+s order to ta)e down the
tarpaulin you ha"e placed on your church.
,n my humle opinion, the directi"e of %&'(L(% to remo"e the aforementioned
tarpaulin infringes your right to freedom of e-pression on your own pri"ate property, as well as
the principle of separation of %hurch and !tate granted y our %onstitution.
The church has the constitutional right to communicate their "iews and eliefs which
relates to issues of interest affecting the %atholic community. Thus, posting the su.ect tarpaulin
on your shrine, a pri"ate property owned y your diocese, is a manner of e-pressing a elief and
an opinion which cannot e "iolated. The content and the message of the said tarpaulin simply
con"eys your position on the #H Law and the pulic officials who supported or opposed it as it
gains rele"ance in the e-ercise of the people+s right of suffrage.
/lso, the directi"e "iolates the principle of separation of %hurch and !tate enshrined in
!ection 0 of /rticle ,, of the 1234 %onstitution:
$The separation of Church and State shall be inviolable.”
The %hurch has always declared that the #H Law is contrary to the morals and ideas
rought y the %atholic %hurch. Therefore, the %hurch, in its own right, may call on its
community not to support any candidate who is anti5life, and to support those who are pro5life.
The right and pri"ilege of the %hurch to propagate its teachings should e precluded from any
form of intrusion on the part of the !tate. Therefore, the %&'(L(%+s directi"e to remo"e the
said tarpaulin is clearly an encroachment into the affairs of the %hurch, and constitutes serious
"iolations of the principle of separation of %hurch and !tate which the latter is ound to respect.
/ word of reser"ation: 'y opinion is only ased on the language of the pro"isions and
rights gi"en y our %onstitution. 6onetheless, my opinion is that your action of putting up the
tarpaulin su.ect in this case is "alid and is a matter of right. , hope that this helps you decide on
further actions with regard to the matter.
#espectfully yours,
/tty. 777777777777777