I have to say that the Catholic Church deftly handled a possible controversy, what with the conviction of Carlos Celdran today by a Manila Regional Trial Court. His highly popular antic last year that made headlines both here and abroad will cost him a month's detention in a filthy cell inside Manila City Jail.
The Church immediately issued a statement, saying that the Hierarchy has forgiven Celdran but respects the decision of the Manila Court.
I remember back in 1896, when a similar court found Jose Rizal, guilty of a more serious crime of rebellion and sedition. Rizal wrote disparaging stories against the Church and the colonial state, and he was being punished for it.
The friars in those times publicly announced their forgiveness. Behind the veneer though, the friars' true sentiments got exposed.
When Rizal was being led to a martyred slaughter, those who yelled and clapped and lustily shouted death to Rizal, were the same Friars who already forgave him.
Such hypocrites! Now,
In our digital age, when the right to express oneself is sancrosanct in every democratic society, such a ruling from a court, shows a very dangerous precedent.
Celdran did what he did for the sake of enlightening the public about alleged dangers of not passing the RH bill. If the Church wants to punish those behind the RH bill, don't shoot the messenger.
And if the Church is really dead serious on forgiving Celdran, then, they should be the ones to tell the Court to stop the proceedings.
The Church is slowly showing its backwardness.