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1.

Fonacier v CA 96 Phil 417

Facts: Case was filed by Iglesia Filipina Independiente (IFI), represented by its supreme bishop Gerardo
Bayaca, against Bishop Fonacier seeking to render an accounting of his administration of all the temporal
properties and to recover the same on the ground that he ceased to be the supreme bishop of IFI.
Isabelo De los Reyes Jr. had been elected as the Supreme Bishop.

Petitioner claims that he was not properly removed as Supreme Bishop and his legal successor was Juan
Jamias. He claims that the there was an accounting of his administration and was turned over to bishop
Jamias. Also, that Isabelo De los Reyes and Bayaca have abandoned their faith and formally joined the
Prostestant Episcopal Church of America.

CFI rendered judgment declaring Isabelo De Los Reyes, Jr. as the sole and legitimate Supreme Bishop of
IFI and ordered Fonacier to render an accounting of his admistration

CA affirmed the decision of the CFI

Issue: Whether or not, the petitioner should still be regarded as the legitimate supreme bishop of IFI.

Held: The Supreme Court affirmed CAs decision. The legitimate Supreme Bishop of IFI is Isabelo De los
Reyes, Jr. The Supreme Court affirms the validity of the election of Bishop Delos Reyes as the Supreme
Bishop based on their internal laws

To finally dispose of the property issue, the Court, citing Watson v. Jones,368 declared that the rule in
property controversies within religious congregations strictly independent of any other superior
ecclesiastical association (such as the Philippine Independent Church) is that the rules for resolving such
controversies should be those of any voluntary association. If the congregation adopts the majority rule
then the majority should prevail; if it adopts adherence to duly constituted authorities within the
congregation, then that should be followed.

2. West Virginia Board of Education v Barnette 219 US 624

Brief Fact Summary. The Respondent, Barnette (Respondent), is a Jehovahs Witness who refused to
pledge allegiance the United States flag while in public school. According to the Petitioner, the West
Virginia State Board of Educations (Petitioner), rule, the Respondent was expelled from school and
charged with juvenile delinquency.

Synopsis of Rule of Law. The right to not speak is as equally protected under the First Amendment of the
United States Constitution (Constitution) as the right to free speech.

Facts. In 1942, the Petitioner adopted a rule that forced all teachers and pupils to pledge allegiance the
nations flag each day. If the student refused he would be found insubordinate and expelled from school.
He would not be readmitted to school until he conformed. Meanwhile, he was considered to be
unlawfully absent and subject to delinquency hearings. The parents could be fined $50 per day with a
jail term not to exceed 30 days. The Respondent asked for an exception for all Jehovahs Witnesses
because this pledge goes against their religious belief. But he was denied an exception.

Issue. Does this rule compelling a pledge violate the First Amendment of the Constitution?
Held. Yes. Compelling a salute to the flag infringes upon an individuals intellect and right to choose their
own beliefs.

Dissent. This legislation is well within the states purview to encourage good citizenship.

Discussion. The majority focuses on the right of persons to choose beliefs and act accordingly. As long as
the actions do not present a clear and present danger of the kind the state is allowed to prevent, then
the Constitution encourages diversity of thought and belief. The state has not power to mandate
allegiance in hopes that it will encourage patriotism. This is something the citizens will choose or not.

3. Gerona v Sec. of Education 106 Phil 2

FACTS:
1. Petitioners belong to the Jehovas Witness whose children were expelled from their schools when they
refused to salute, sing the anthem, recite the pledge during the conduct of flag ceremony. DO No. 8
issued by DECS pursuant to RA 1265 which called for the manner of conduct during a flag ceremony. The
petitioners wrote the Secretary of Education on their plight and requested to reinstate their children.
This was denied.

2. As a result, the petitioners filed for a writ of preliminary injunction against the Secretary and Director
of Public Schools to restrain them from implementing said DO No. 8.

3. The lower court (RTC) declared DO 8 invalid and contrary to the Bill of Rights.

ISSUE: Whether or not DO 8 is valid or constitutional

DO 8 is valid. Saluting the flag is not a religious ritual and it is for the courts to determine, not a religious
group, whether or not a certain practice is one.

1. The court held that the flag is not an image but a symbol of the Republic of the Philippines, an
emblem of national sovereignty, of national unity and cohesion and of freedom and liberty which it and
the Constitution guarantee and protect. Considering the complete separation of church and state in our
system of government, the flag is utterly devoid of any religious significance. Saluting the flag
consequently does not involve any religious ceremony.

After all, the determination of whether a certain ritual is or is not a religious ceremony must rest with
the courts. It cannot be left to a religious group or sect, much less to a follower of said group or sect;
otherwise, there would be confusion and misunderstanding for there might be as many interpretations
and meanings to be given to a certain ritual or ceremony as there are religious groups or sects or
followers.

2. The freedom of religious belief guaranteed by the Constitution does not and cannot mean exemption
form or non-compliance with reasonable and non-discriminatory laws, rules and regulations
promulgated by competent authority. In enforcing the flag salute on the petitioners, there was
absolutely no compulsion involved, and for their failure or refusal to obey school regulations about the
flag salute they were not being persecuted. Neither were they being criminally prosecuted under threat
of penal sacntion. If they chose not to obey the flag salute regulation, they merely lost the benefits of
public education being maintained at the expense of their fellow citizens, nothing more. According to a
popular expression, they could take it or leave it. Having elected not to comply with the regulations
about the flag salute, they forfeited their right to attend public schools.

3. The Filipino flag is not an image that requires religious veneration; rather it is symbol of the Republic
of the Philippines, of sovereignty, an emblem of freedom, liberty and national unity; that the flag salute
is not a religious ceremony but an act and profession of love and allegiance and pledge of loyalty to the
fatherland which the flag stands for; that by authority of the legislature, the Secretary of Education was
duly authorized to promulgate Department Order No. 8, series of 1955; that the requirement of
observance of the flag ceremony or salute provided for in said Department Order No. 8, does not violate
the Constitutional provision about freedom of religion and exercise of religion; that compliance with the
non-discriminatory and reasonable rules and regulations and school discipline, including observance of
the flag ceremony is a prerequisite to attendance in public schools; and that for failure and refusal to
participate in the flag ceremony, petitioners were properly excluded and dismissed from the public
school they were attending.

4. Pamil v Teleron 86 SCRA 413

In 1971, Fr. Margarito Gonzaga, a priest, won the election for mayoralty in Alburquerque, Bohol. He was
later proclaimed as mayor therein. Fortunato Pamil, a rival candidate filed a quo warranto case against
Gonzaga questioning the eligibility of Gonzaga. He argued that as provided for in Section 2175 of the
1917 Revised Administrative Code:

in no case shall there be elected or appointed to a municipal office ecclesiastics, soldiers in active
service, persons receiving salaries or compensation from provincial or national funds, or contractors for
public works of the municipality.

In this case, the elected mayor is a priest. However, Judge Victorino Teleron ruled that the Administrative
Code is repealed by the Election Code of 1971 which now allows ecclesiastics to run.

ISSUE: Whether or not Section 2175 of the Revised Administrative Code of 1917 is no longer operative?

HELD: The Supreme Court decision was indecisive. Under the 1935 Constitution, No religious test shall
be required for the exercise of civil or political rights. If the the doctrine of constitutional supremacy is
to be maintained, then Section 2175 shall not prevail, thus, an ecclesiastic may run for elective office.
However, this issue proved to have divided the Supreme Court because it failed to obtain the majority
vote of eight (8) which is needed in order to declare Section 2175 of the RAC to be unconstitutional. For
this, the petition filed by Pamil must be granted and the decision of the lower court reversed and set
aside. Fr. Gonzaga is hereby ordered to vacate the mayoralty position.

It was also pointed out (in the dissenting opinions) that how can one who swore to serve the Churchs
interest above all be in duty to enforce state policies which at times may conflict with church tenets. This
is in violation of the separation of the church and state. The Revised Administrative Code still stands
because there is no implied repeal.

Dissenting Opinion

J. Teehankee The Comelec ruled that soldiers in active service and persons receiving salaries or
compensation from provincial or national funds are obviously now allowed to run for a public elective
office because under Sec. 23 of the Election Code of 1971 every person holding a public appointive
office or position, including active members of the Armed Forces shall ipso facto cease in their office or
position on the date they file their certificates of candidacy. This implies that they are no longer
disqualified from running for an elective office. The Comelec further ruled that as to the two remaining
categories formerly banned under the Revised Administrative Code, ecclesiastics and contractors for
public works of the municipality are allowed to run for municipal elective offices under the maxim,
Inclusio unius est exclusio alterius, they being not included in the enumeration of persons ineligible
under the New Election Code. The rule is that all persons possessing the necessary qualifications, except
those expressly disqualified by the election code, are eligible to run for public office.

5. Aglipay v Ruiz 64 Phil 201

Facts: Petitioner Aglipay, the head of Phil. Independent Church, filed a writ of prohibition against
respondent Ruiz, the Director of Post, enjoining the latter from issuing and selling postage stamps
commemorative of the 33rd Intl Eucharistic Congress organized by the Roman Catholic. The petitioner
invokes that such issuance and selling, as authorized by Act 4052 by the Phil. Legislature, contemplates
religious purpose for the benefit of a particular sect or church. Hence, this petition.

Issue: Whether or not the issuing and selling of commemorative stamps is constitutional?

Held/Reason: The Court said YES, the issuing and selling of commemorative stamps by the respondent
does not contemplate any favor upon a particular sect or church, but the purpose was only to advertise
the Philippines and attract more tourist and the government just took advantage of an event considered
of international importance, thus, not violating the Constitution on its provision on the separation of the
Church and State. Moreover, the Court stressed that Religious freedom, as a constitutional mandate is
not inhibition of profound reverence for religion and is not denial of its influence in human affairs.
Emphasizing that, when the Filipino people implored the aid of Divine Providence, they thereby
manifested reliance upon Him who guides the destinies of men and nations. The elevating influence of
religion in human society is recognized here as elsewhere. In fact, certain general concessions are
indiscriminately accorded to religious sects and denominations.

6. Engel v Vitale 370 US 421

Facts: A New York State law required public schools to open each day with the Pledge of Allegiance
and a nondenominational prayer in which the students recognized their dependence upon God. The law
allowed students to absent themselves from this activity if they found it objectionable. A parent sued on
behalf of his child, arguing that the law violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, as
made applicable to the states through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

Issue: Whether school-sponsored nondenominational prayer in public schools violates the


Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

Ruling: Yes (8-1)


Reasoning: The majority, via Justice Black, held that school-sponsored prayer violates the Establishment
Clause of the First Amendment. The majority stated that the provision allowing students to absent
themselves from this activity did not make the law constitutional because the purpose of the First
Amendment was to prevent government interference with religion. The majority noted that religion is
very important to a vast majority of the American people. Since Americans adhere to a wide variety of
beliefs, it is not appropriate for the government to endorse any particular belief system. The majority
noted that wars, persecutions, and other destructive measures often arose in the past when the
government involved itself in religious affairs.

Concurrence

Justice Douglas
In his concurrence, Justice Douglas took an even broader view of the Establishment Clause, arguing that
any type of public promotion of religion, including giving financial aid to religious schools, violates the
Establishment Clause.

Dissent

Justice Stewart
Justice Stewart argued in his dissent that the Establishment Clause was only meant to prohibit the
establishment of a state-sponsored church, such as the Church of England, and not prohibit all types of
government involvement with religion. In particular, he found that the nondenominational nature of the
prayer and the "absentee" provision removed constitutional challenges.

7. Board of Edu v Allen 392 US 236

Facts of the case


A 1965 amendment to New York's Education Law required public school boards to lend textbooks to
elementary and secondary school students enrolled in private and parochial schools. The Board of
Education for New York Central School District No. 1, contending that the law violated the Establishment
and Free Exercise Clauses of the First Amendment, filed suit against James Allen, Commissioner of
Education, requesting a declaratory injunction to prevent enforcement of the statute. The trial court
agreed with the board and found the statute unconstitutional. The Appellate Division reversed the
ruling, finding that the boards lacked standing. On appeal, the New York Court of Appeals ruled the
boards did have standing, but also found that, because the law's purpose was to benefit all students
regardless of the type of school they attended, the law did not violate the First Amendment.

Question
Do the Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses of the First Amendment forbid New York from requiring
that public school boards loan textbooks to parochial school students without cost?

Conclusion
Sort: by seniority by ideology
63 DECISION
No. In a 6-3 opinion authored by Justice Byron R. White, the Court applied the test constructed in
Abington School District v. Schempp and found that, because the stated legislative purpose and
necessary effects of the statute did not advance any one religion or religion in general, the law did not
violate the First Amendment. Because the books were given to the students, rather than the parochial
schools themselves, the Court reasoned, "the financial benefit is to parents and children, not schools."
8. Victoriano v Elizalde Rope Workers Union 59 SCRA 54

FACTS:

Benjamin Victoriano (Appellee), a member of the religious sect known as the Iglesia ni Cristo, had been
in the employ of the Elizalde Rope Factory, Inc. (Company) since 1958. He was a member of the Elizalde
Rope Workers Union (Union) which had with the Company a CBA containing a closed shop provision
which reads as follows: Membership in the Union shall be required as a condition of employment for all
permanent employees workers covered by this Agreement.

Under Sec 4(a), par 4, of RA 975, prior to its amendment by RA 3350, the employer was not precluded
from making an agreement with a labor organization to require as a condition of employment
membership therein, if such labor organization is the representative of the employees. On June 18,
1961, however, RA 3350 was enacted, introducing an amendment to par 4 subsection (a) of sec 4 of RA
875, as follows: xxx but such agreement shall not cover members of any religious sects which prohibit
affiliation of their members in any such labor organization.

Being a member of a religious sect that prohibits the affiliation of its members with any labor
organization, Appellee presented his resignation to appellant Union. The Union wrote a formal letter to
the Company asking the latter to separate Appellee from the service because he was resigning from the
Union as a member. The Company in turn notified Appellee and his counsel that unless the Appellee
could achieve a satisfactory arrangement with the Union, the Company would be constrained to dismiss
him from the service.

Appellee filed an action for injunction to enjoin the Company and the Union from dismissing Appellee.
The Union invoked the union security clause of the CBA and assailed the constitutionality of RA 3350
and contends it discriminatorily favors those religious sects which ban their members from joining labor
unions.

ISSUE:
Whether Appellee has the freedom of choice in joining the union or not.

RULING:

YES. The Constitution and RA 875 recognize freedom of association. Sec 1 (6) of Art III of the Constitution
of 1935, as well as Sec 7 of Art IV of the Constitution of 1973, provide that the right to form associations
or societies for purposes not contrary to law shall not be abridged. Section 3 of RA 875 provides that
employees shall have the right to self-organization and to form, join of assist labor organizations of their
own choosing for the purpose of collective bargaining and to engage in concerted activities for the
purpose of collective bargaining and other mutual aid or protection. What the Constitution and the
Industrial Peace Act recognize and guarantee is the right to form or join associations. A right
comprehends at least two broad notions, namely: first, liberty or freedom, i.e., the absence of legal
restraint, whereby an employee may act for himself without being prevented by law; and second, power,
whereby an employee may, as he pleases, join or refrain from joining an association. It is, therefore, the
employee who should decide for himself whether he should join or not an association; and should he
choose to join, he himself makes up his mind as to which association he would join; and even after he
has joined, he still retains the liberty and the power to leave and cancel his membership with said
organization at any time. The right to join a union includes the right to abstain from joining any union.
The law does not enjoin an employee to sign up with any association.

The right to refrain from joining labor organizations recognized by Section 3 of the Industrial Peace Act is,
however, limited. The legal protection granted to such right to refrain from joining is withdrawn by
operation of law, where a labor union and an employer have agreed on a closed shop, by virtue of which
the employer may employ only members of the collective bargaining union, and the employees must
continue to be members of the union for the duration of the contract in order to keep their jobs. By
virtue of a closed shop agreement, before the enactment of RA 3350, if any person, regardless of his
religious beliefs, wishes to be employed or to keep his employment he must become a member of the
collective bargaining union. Hence, the right of said employee not to join the labor union is curtailed and
withdrawn.

To that all-embracing coverage of the closed shop arrangement, RA No.3350 introduced an exception,
when it added to Section 4 (a) (4) of the Industrial Peace Act the following proviso: but such agreement
shall not cover members of any religious sects which prohibit affiliation of their members in any such
labor organization. Republic Act No. 3350 merely excludes ipso jure from the application and coverage
of the closed shop agreement the employees belonging to any religious sects which prohibit affiliation of
their members with any labor organization. What the exception provides is that members of said
religious sects cannot be compelled or coerced to join labor unions even when said unions have closed
shop agreements with the employers; that in spite of any closed shop agreement, members of said
religious sects cannot be refused employment or dismissed from their jobs on the sole ground that they
are not members of the collective bargaining union. It does not prohibit the members of said religious
sects from affiliating with labor unions. It still leaves to said members the liberty and the power to
affiliate, or not to affiliate, with labor unions. If, notwithstanding their religious beliefs, the members of
said religious wets prefer to sign up with the labor union, they can do so. If in deference and fealty to
their religious faith, they refuse to sign up, they can do so; the law does not coerce them to join; neither
does the law prohibit them from joining, and neither may the employer or labor union compel them to
join.

The Company was partly absolved by law from the contractual obligation it had with the Union of
employing only Union members in permanent positions. It cannot be denied, therefore, that there was
indeed an impairment of said union security clause.

The prohibition to impair the obligation of contracts is not absolute and unqualified. The prohibition is
general. The prohibition is not to be read with literal exactness, for it prohibits unreasonable impairment
only. In spite of the constitutional prohibition, the State continues to possess authority to safeguard the
vital interests of its people. Legislation appropriate to safeguarding said interests may modify or abrogate
contracts already in effect. For not only are existing laws read into contracts in order to fix the obligations
as between the parties, but the reservation of essential attributes of sovereign power is also read into
contracts as a postulate of the legal order. The contract clause of the Constitution. must be not only in
harmony with, but also in subordination to, in appropriate instances, the reserved power of the state to
safeguard the vital interests of the people. This has special application to contracts regulating relations
between capital and labor which are not merely contractual, and said labor contracts, for being
impressed with public interest, must yield to the common good.

The purpose to be achieved by RA 3350 is to insure freedom of belief and religion, and to promote the
general welfare by preventing discrimination against those members of religious sects which prohibit
their members from joining labor unions, confirming thereby their natural, statutory and constitutional
right to work, the fruits of which work are usually the only means whereby they can maintain their own
life and the life of their dependents.

The individual employee, at various times in his working life, is confronted by two aggregates of power
collective labor, directed by a union, and collective capital, directed by management. The union, an
institution developed to organize labor into a collective force and thus protect the individual employee
from the power of collective capital, is, paradoxically, both the champion of employee rights, and a new
source of their frustration. Moreover, when the Union interacts with management, it produces yet a
third aggregate of group strength from which the individual also needs protection the collective
bargaining relationship.

The free exercise of religious profession or belief is superior to contract rights. In case of conflict, the
latter must yield to the former.

The purpose of RA 3350 is to serve the secular purpose of advancing the constitutional right to the free
exercise of religion, by averting that certain persons be refused work, or be dismissed from work, or be
dispossessed of their right to work and of being impeded to pursue a modest means of livelihood, by
reason of union security agreements. To help its citizens to find gainful employment whereby they can
make a living to support themselves and their families is a valid objective of the state. The Constitution
even mandated that the State shall afford protection to labor, promote full employment and equality in
employment, ensure equal work opportunities regardless of sex, race or creed and regulate the relation
between workers and employers.

The primary effects of the exemption from closed shop agreements in favor of members of religious
sects that prohibit their members from affiliating with a labor organization, is the protection of said
employees against the aggregate force of the collective bargaining agreement, and relieving certain
citizens of a burden on their religious beliefs; and by eliminating to a certain extent economic insecurity
due to unemployment, which is a serious menace to the health, morals, and welfare of the people of the
State, the Act also promotes the well-being of society. It is our view that the exemption from the effects
of closed shop agreement does not directly advance, or diminish, the interests of any particular religion.
Although the exemption may benefit those who are members of religious sects that prohibit their
members from joining labor unions, the benefit upon the religious sects is merely incidental and indirect.

The purpose of RA 3350 was not to grant rights to labor unions. The rights of labor unions are amply
provided for in Republic Act No. 875 and the new Labor Code.

The Act does not require as a qualification, or condition, for joining any lawful association membership in
any particular religion or in any religious sect; neither does the Act require affiliation with a religious sect
that prohibits its members from joining a labor union as a condition or qualification for withdrawing
from a labor union. Joining or withdrawing from a labor union requires a positive act Republic Act No.
3350 only exempts members with such religious affiliation from the coverage of closed shop
agreements. So, under this Act, a religious objector is not required to do a positive act-to exercise the
right to join or to resign from the union. He is exempted ipso jure without need of any positive act on his
part.

WHEREFORE, the instant appeal is dismissed.


9. German v Barangan 135 SCRA 514
One afternoon in October 1984, Reli German et al went to JP Laurel Sreet to pray and worship at the St.
Luke Chapel. But they were barred by General Santiago Barangan from entering the church because the
same is within the vicinity of the Malacaang. And considering that Germans group is expressively
known as the August Twenty One Movement who were wearing yellow shirts with clench fists, Barangan
deemed that they were not really there to worship but rather they are there to disrupt the ongoings
within the Malacaang.

ISSUE: Whether or not the bar disallowing petitioners to worship and pray at St. Lukes is a violation of
their freedom to worship and locomotion.

HELD: No. In the case at bar, German et al were not denied or restrained of their freedom of belief or
choice of their religion, but only in the manner by which they had attempted to translate the same into
action. There has been a clear manifestation by Barangan et al that they allow German et al to practice
their religious belief but not in the manner that German et al impressed. Such manner impresses clear
and present danger to the executive of the state hence the need to curtail it even at the expense of
curtailing ones freedom to worship.

Dissenting Opinions

J. Fernando It would be an unwarranted departure then from what has been unanimously held in the
J.B.L. Reyes decision if on such a basic right as religious freedom -clearly the most fundamental and thus
entitled to the highest priority among human rights, involving as it does the relationship of man to his
Creator -this Court will be less vigilant in upholding any rightful claim. More than ever, in times of stress
-and much more so in times of crisis -it is that deeply-held faith that affords solace and comfort if not for
everyone at least for the majority of mankind. Without that faith, mans very existence is devoid of
meaning, bereft of significance.

J. Teehankee The right to freely exercise ones religion is guaranteed in Section 8 of our Bill of Rights. 7
Freedom of worship, alongside with freedom of expression and speech and peaceable assembly along
with the other intellectual freedoms, are highly ranked in our scheme of constitutional values. It cannot
be too strongly stressed that on the judiciary -even more so than on the other departments -rests the
grave and delicate responsibility of assuring respect for and deference to such preferred rights. No verbal
formula, no sanctifying phrase can, of course, dispense with what has been so felicitously termed by
Justice Holmes as the sovereign prerogative of judgment. Nonetheless, the presumption must be to
incline the weight of the scales of justice on the side of such rights, enjoying as they do precedence and
primacy.

J. Makasiar With the assurances aforestated given by both petitioners and respondents, there is no
clear and present danger to public peace and order or to the security of persons within the premises of
Malacaang and the adjacent areas, as the respondents has adopted measures and are prepared to
insure against any public disturbance or violence.

10. Ebralinag v Div. Superintendent of Schools of Cebu 219 SCRA 259

FACTS:
1. In G.R. No. 95770 "Roel Ebralinag, et al. vs. Division Superintendent of Schools of Cebu and Manuel F.
Biongcog, Cebu District Supervisor," the petitioners are 43 high school and elementary school students in
several towns of in Cebu province. All minors, they are assisted by their parents who belong to the
religious group known as Jehovah's Witness. This is a consolidated petition.

2. All the petitioners in these two cases were expelled from their classes by the public school authorities
in Cebu for refusing to salute the flag, sing the national anthem and recite the patriotic pledge as
required by RA 1265 of July 11, 1955, and by DO No. 8 of the DECS making the flag ceremony
compulsory in all educational institutions

3. In G.R. No. 95887, "May Amolo, et al. vs. Division Superintendent of Schools of Cebu and Antonio A.
Sangutan," the petitioners are 25 high school and grade school students enrolled in public schools in
Asturias, Cebu, whose parents are Jehovah's Witnesses. Both petitions were prepared by the same
counsel, Attorney Felino M. Ganal.

4. The Jehovah's Witnesses admittedly teach their children not to salute the flag, sing the national
anthem, and recite the patriotic pledge for they believe that those are "acts of worship" or "religious
devotion only given to God.They consider the flag as an image or idol representing the State . They think
the action of the local authorities in compelling the flag salute and pledge transcends constitutional
limitations on the State's power and invades the sphere of the intellect and spirit which the Constitution
protect against official control

5. In 1989, the DECS Regional Office in Cebu received complaints about teachers and pupils belonging to
the Jehovah's Witnesses, and enrolled in various public and private schools, who refused to sing the
Philippine national anthem, salute the Philippine flag and recite the patriotic pledge.

6. The students and their parents filed these special civil actions for Mandamus,Certiorari and
Prohibition alleging that the public respondents acted without or in excess of their jurisdiction and with
grave abuse of discretion (1) in ordering their expulsion without prior notice and hearing, hence, in
violation of their right to due process, their right to free public education, and their right to freedom of
speech, religion and worship

7. The Court issued a TRO and a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction and ordered to immediately
re-admit the petitioners to their respective classes until further orders.

ISSUE: Whether or not the expulsion is valid

NO. The court upheld the petitioners' right under the Constitution to refuse to salute the Philippine flag
on account of their religious beliefs. Religious freedom as a fundamental right deserving the "highest
priority and amplest protection among human rights. It reversed the expulsion orders made by the
public respondents therein as violative of both the free exercise of religion clause and the right of
citizens to education under the 1987 Constitution.

Although the Court upholds in this decision nevertheless, that another foreign invasion of our country
will not be necessary in order for our countrymen to appreciate and cherish the Philippine flag.