Iglesia Ni Cristo stops religious gatherings after Mayor Sara Duterte’s request: “Kami po ay susunod sa alintuntunin ng gobyerno”

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The officials of Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) in Davao City informed Mayor Inday Sara Duterte that they’re going to follow the community quarantine rules in Davao City.

In an interview with DCDR 87.5, Mayor Duterte said that she received a text from INC, informing her that they’re going to temporarily stop their religious activities as a response to the executive order signed by the presidential daughter.

“Kami po ay susunod sa alintuntunin ng gobyerno at pansamantala po muna naming ipapatigil ang aming pagtitipon tipon sa bawat kapilya,” Inday Sara said while reading the text from INC.

The Mayor thanked her brothers and sisters in INC for responding positively to her request.

She was also glad that INC didn’t think that her request is an infringement of their religious freedom.

Inday Sara said that the members of Iglesia Ni Cristo can still do their religious activities via the internet or other ways without having a mass gathering.

“They can find other modes on how to exercise their religion na hindi mag mass gathering,” Duterte said.

A few days ago, Mayor Duterte sent a warning to INC, asking them to stop their religious activities or else face legal actions.

“We already told you through an executive order that all religious ceremonies should be suspended. I want to remind members of Iglesia Ni Cristo that praying inside the church will not save you from the virus. It will not prevent you from getting infected and from getting sick,” Duterte said.

“If we cannot appeal to INC to suspend their activities, then we are exploring what we can do on the legal side,” she added.

Some members of INC defended their actions after reading Duterte’s warning and declared that no one could stop them from doing their religious activity.

“INC has always been very supportive of the Government programs as long as it does not interfere with our faith, especially our freedom of worship,” INC member Wally Cuarto stated.

“Kung may masamang mangyari sa amin tulad ng digmaan, baha, salot o taggutom, haharap kami sa TEMPLONG ITO upang humingi ng tulong sa iyo sapagkat dito ka sinasamba, tatawag kami sa iyo, papakinggan mo kami at ililigtas sa panahon ng aming kagipitan. (2 Cronica 20:9) BMBB” he added.

They also explained that they’re following social distancing and deployed nurses in some of their churches to check their members.

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