MANILA, Philippines (January 26, 2017) – Late last year, the Justice Panel’s Subcommittee on Judicial Reforms of the House of Representatives voted in favor of House Bill 1 (HB1), which approves the reimposition of capital punishment in the country. The Catholic Church, human rights groups and some lawmakers have since been lobbying against the death penalty on the grounds of possibly executing innocent people.
The position of PCEC regarding death penalty (pro-death penalty) has gone against the position of the Catholic Church, but the current leadership is open to a review of its position. The forum is part of its process to review its position in light of current realities.
PCEC will be holding “Created in God’s Image: Contending Biblical Perspectives on Death Penalty,” a forum that sheds light on the biblical, moral, judicial and legislative aspects of capital punishment. The forum, which will be held on January 27, 2017, will be graced by Senator Risa Hontiveros and Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre, who will be discussing the legal and legislative and judicial implications of death penalty, respectively.
Lorenzo Bautista, a Theology professor at the, Asian Theological Seminary & Penuel School of Theology, and Dr. Mariano Apilado, president emeritus at the Union Theological Seminary, will be holding a theological discussion in the afternoon. This will be followed by a panel discussion led by Bishop Noel Alba Pantoja, PCEC national director; Bishop Reuben Abante, senior pastor at the Lighthouse Bible Baptist Church; Bishop Rodrigo Tan, president of the Alliance Graduate School and Christian and Missionary Alliance Churches of the Philippines (CAMACOP).
“As people formed by God’s Word, we would like to understand the issues of national concern such as the death penalty through the lens of Scripture. The forum aims to help the Filipino people understand the legal, judicial, and biblical aspects of the death penalty,” said Bishop Pantoja.
The “Created in God’s Image: Contending Biblical Perspectives on Death Penalty” will be held at the PCEC Social Hall, 4th Floor Evangelical Center, 62 Molave St. Project 3, Quezon City from 8 a.m. onward.
The Philippine Council of Evangelical Churches (PCEC) was established in 1965 by a group of Christian leaders seeking to form an organization that will express its oneness in Jesus Christ and to formalize into a distinct council the growing force and influence of evangelism in the country. From a small umbrella organization, PCEC has grown into a network of more than 20,000 denominations, churches, mission groups and parachurch organizations nationwide.