Art. 133. Offending the religious feelings. — The penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision correccional in its minimum period shall be imposed upon anyone who, in a place devoted to religious worship or during the celebration of any religious ceremony shall perform acts notoriously offensive to the feelings of the faithful.
Carlos tried to resolve the allegations with Cardinal Rosales through the letter below however ” I don’t think they ever had any intention of dropping my case. I asked about my letter to Rosales. They just said: No response.”
Dear Cardinal Rosales,
I am writing in letter to formally apologize for the incident that occurred on September 30, 2010 at the Manila Cathedral.
The protest which I mounted, however passionate and earnest on my part, was done without deliberation. It was my attempt to catch the attention of the Church regarding certain politcal issues but it was not my intention to disrespect the solemnity of the Ecumenical event being celebrated on that day.
I was born and raised a Catholic and my faith only seeks understanding. The state of our country drives me to seek the common good. Perhaps my methods are different from yours, but in my heart I know we all consider the same things: the health and welfare of our countrymen—as well as peace, culture, education, order, and freedom for each one of us.
In this light, I would like to seek peaceful resolution with the Church. I am comforted by the grace of forgiveness and reconciliation that Christ’s Resurrection brought to us. We are constantly given the chance to return to the Father’s house, to reclaim the state of grace that is always there for us to receive as his children.
I hope that we—as mere men—can learn to put aside our differences and work towards a better future together. I have chosen to take up my personal cross, and although it may be difficult for others to understand my reasons for doing so, it is my way of finding peace and love in the world.
Despite the apologies, CBCP has no intention to drop the charges and proceeded with the trial. The decision prompted various reactions from Twitter.
@Elle_Paddler says “The CBCP is truly showing its colors – a vindictive collective hiding behind religious doctrines. Damaso talaga!” @_kimbab adds “Maybe that’s why Gandhi said ““I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. They are so unlike your Christ.” @berto_PINOYako is not a Carlos fan but thinks “….but what #CBCP did to him is [C]hildish [B]ehaviour [C]ommitted by [P]riests…”
Carlos has “… no desire to be a martyr. I do what I do because I am passionate re:RH but nobody likes jail.”
Many feel the charges should have been dropped. @artemusd questions “why insist on the charges against @carlosceldran’s advocacy for the #RHBill when there are more immoral acts within their ranks. grabe lang.” He may be referring to these reports regarding Clergy Sexual Abuse of Minors.
I caught one tweet from @CJBLandicho that thinks otherwise”..This is a lesson for you! Respect the Church of God!”
A lot also think the Church should forgive as it often preaches about love and forgiveness. @iam_yena asks “Why do the church even teach forgiveness when they don’t know how to forgive? Let’s make #freecarlos trend. @carlosceldran” @MCBermuda feels that “It’s infuriating when those who are supposed to do godly things are abusing their powers to do ungodly deeds. #freecarlos @carlosceldran”
@plsburydoughboy calls out to “#freecarlos because his court case is an embarrasment to all Catholics actually doing good in the world. Go @carlosceldran”
Here are the rest of the #freecarlos tweets: