The House of Representatives on Monday dedicated almost 3 hours of session to discuss and revisit the relevance of the Holy Bible in running the government.
The session revolves around the privilege speech of CIBAC Party-List Representative and Deputy Speaker Bro. Eddie Villanueva, in connection with the celebration of National Bible Day, who spoke on the indispensability of the Bible in crafting and aligning government policies with the Biblical principles in order to achieve real progress in the country.
“Let us observe the National Bible Day with relevance and significance, not only with lip service and ceremonial rhetoric,” exclaims Deputy Speaker Villanueva. “Today, may I admonish you all to take a look at the Holy Bible not only as a religious book but as a government manual – the indispensability of which cannot be overlooked in steering this country towards progress and development, and possibly greatness,” added the CIBAC lawmaker.The privilege hour, a time dedicated for privilege speeches, was extended twice to accomodate interpellations and inquiries from various Members of the House including Minority Leader Benny Abante, Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, Rep. Edcel Lagman, Rep. Lito Atienza and Rep. Jun Datol.
“There can be a separation of church and state, but there can be no separation of state and God,” says Cagayan De Oro Rep. Rufus Rodriguez stressing the importance of integrating Bible in every aspect of government affairs.
“The Bible contains a life-changing message of freeedom and connects one to history’s most important figure, Jesus of Nazareth,” says Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman thanking CIBAC Rep. Villanueva on allowing him to raise questions pertaining to the Bible.
“Sabi nila, iklian mo ang iyong interpellations. Sa palagay ko ay hindi ko magagawa yun sapagkat paminsan-minsan lang natin makausap si Bro. Eddie, haba-habaan na natin, sa dami ng dapat nating pag-usapan sa hapag na ito. I reiterate, I am taking advantage of the message because I agree with it 101%, sa mga sinabi nyo na para bagang maituturing nating dalisay na hangin na dumadaan sa Kongreso,” says Rep. Lito Atienza referring on the answers by Deputy Speaker Villanueva on the questions of several lawmakers.
On his part, Senior Citizens Party-List Rep. Jun Datol said that he will relay the Bible’s life-changing message of God’s love and hope to millions of senior citizens when he goes around the country so that they will have strength and hope even in the “pre-departure” phase of their lives.
“Ang Bibliya ang dapat maging standard ng bansa at ng bayan sa lahat ng moral issues. Ang mga bansang yumaman at pinagpala, ang pasimula niyan ay sapagkat kanilang ni-recognize ang Bibliya sa kanilang bayan. While every Filipino is guaranteed this freedom of religion, we are one in recognizing God as the Supreme Authority to direct and govern the destiny of men and nation,” exclaims House Minority Leader Bienvenido Abante.
Monday’s session has been the lengthiest hours of session dedicated by Congress, so far, in celebrating National Bible Day and probing it in connection with government affairs.
Proclamation No. 124 declares the entire month of January as the National Bible Month while Republic Act 11163 designates the last Monday of January as the National Bible Day.