pastoral letter


“I promise to be faithful to you, in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, to love and to honor you all the days of my life”.

This Matrimonial Covenant is promised by married people before God and before each and every one of us. This marriage our Constitution recognizes “as an inviolable social institution, is the foundation of the family and shall be protected by the State”. In fact, our Constitution was once touted as the first pro-family constitution in the world.

Couples who overcome trials in marriage together grow in virtue and happiness. That is why decent peoples of the world accompany couples and families toward reconciliation and healing. And our holy Mother, the Church, will always and everywhere be there to help.

Children deserve a Home where love, faithfulness, and forgiveness reign. In particular, they don’t want to see their parents quit because there are difficulties in their relationship. The sight of their parents persevering together will always remain with them especially when they will have their own families.

Science and human experience tell us that marriage is an immutable and undeniable good. Even in difficult marriages, children have benefited psychologically, physically and spiritually. Its demands and benefits lead to a better, compassionate, stable and more dynamic society. Our Constitution’s goal of the common good demands all these.

The dignity of women and men require all these. Because of all of these, Christ the Lord raised Marriage to the dignity of a Sacrament. Let not Congress lay waste these victories with a divorce bill.

“Because of the hardness of your hearts, Moses wrote you this commandment [on divorce]. But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother (and be joined to his wife), and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, no human being must separate” (Mk 10:5-9).


+ Gilbert A. Garcera
Archbishop of Lipa
Chairman, Episcopal Commission on Family and Life