Sunday, October 30, 2005


Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Through this weblog (a companion tool of a website I have been working on for the past seven months, and which will be on-line on or before the end of November 2005, by God’s grace), I will discuss legal issues affecting the Filipino family.I will also discuss topics that are relevant to the needs of pastors and members of Baptist churches in the Philippines. Some of these topics are:

[1] The right of a church to discipline its erring members, with a discussion of the US case of “Marian Guinn versus Church of Christ at Collinsville’ and here in the Philippines, the 2001 case involving the “Church in Quezon City”

[2] Clergy malpractice as best exemplified by the American case of “Nally versus Grace Community Church”

[3] The issue of “ecclesiastical marriages” as practiced by some churches here in the Philippines in the light of the landmark 2004 Supreme Court ruling in the case of “Estrada versus Escritor”

[4] The issue of sexual harassment as provided for by Republic Act 7877 and how a pastor should take precautionary measures when counseling a woman, in view of the Supreme Court ruling in the 2001 case of “Mollaneda versus Umacob”

[5] The “covenant marriage laws” of the states of Arizona, Arkansas and Louisiana, the covenant marriage movement in the USA, and how these can be made applicable here in the Philippines

[6] Divorce and its equivalents here in the Philippines like annulment of voidable marriages, declaration of nullity of void marriages, and declaration of presumptive death for purposes of remarriage

We don't have a divorce law in the Philippines, but the Family Code provides for its equivalents as I mentioned above. Over the years, pastors have asked me on what to do with their members who, before they were converted to Christ, were married to persons other than their current partners. My own views are similar to Chuck Swindoll's discussion of divorce and remarriage in his book "Strike the Original Match." It might interest you to know that according to the DSWD, 40% of couples in the CALABARZON (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon) are merely living in. That's about 90,000 couples.

Potentials of weblogs for pastors, churches and missionaries

As you know, a weblog is a simplified of a website, capable of posting text documents and pictures, without the need of knowing all that technical HTML stuff. Anyone who knows a word processing program like MS Word can create and maintain a weblog. The weblog tool that you use may be commercial (that is, you have to pay a fee for its services and the hosting), or free (as provided by some entities on the Internet, although “free” means that ads will be placed on your weblog in exchange.)

The weblog is a vital tool for Baptist pastors and missionaries, enabling you to have a presence on the Internet. Instead of a website where you will be totally dependent on the guys who know the technical HTML stuff, you can use the weblog to post articles (sermons, Sunday school lessons, devotionals, profiles of the staff and members, etc), schedules of activities and special programs, and pictures of church events.Through a weblog, Filipino missionaries to local and foreign fields can keep their supporting churches informed about their activities, schedules of deputation, needs and prayer requests.

If you are interested in using the weblog, whether you are a pastor, missionary or group leader in your church, I can help you for free in three ways. One, I can show you how to put up a weblog (although as I said, learning how to put up a weblog is easy when you know any word processing program). Two, I can conduct a seminar for you or your church staff on writing news, features, editorials, and photography. Three, you may be a Filipino missionary to a foreign field interested in putting up a weblog, but you’re not that proficient in written English. You can e-mail me your articles (“post” or “posting” in the weblog language) first. I will then edit your posts and send them back to you by e-mail. You can then post these edited articles into your weblog.

I was a journalism teacher and schoolpaper adviser (Quezon City Science High School 1983-1984, and Rizal High School in Pasig, from 1984 up to 1995). Helping pastors, missionaries and churches put up and maintain a weblog is one of my ministries. You can e-mail me at, and we can arrange the schedule. While these seminars are free, you need to help me in terms of transportation expenses, especially for churches outside of the Metro Manila area.As a ministry,

Free seminars for churches, schools and barangays
I also give free lecture-seminars to churches, schools, barangays and other organizations on the following topics: (1) Essential Provisions of the Family Code; (2) RA 9262 Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004; (3) Procedures in Administrative Cases Against Teachers; and (4) Photojournalism for grade schools and high schools, and youth groups. Any group which wants to hold these seminars can just contact me at for available schedules. Churches may hold these seminars as part of their outreach to their communities.

Last summer, I had the privilege of lecturing on Republic Act 9262 in places like Laguna (Kalayaan, Lumban, Victoria, Alaminos), Batangas (Sto. Tomas) and Cavite City. The hardworking municipal and city SWDOs coordinated these seminars. Previously, I conducted two RA 9262 seminars for the DSWD Region IV-A social workers held at the Haven for Abused Women, and at Max’s Restaurant in Ayala Alabang Town Center.

This coming November 24, I have been invited through Ptr. Vincent Santos Diaz, to give a legal lecture as part of the symposium of the Baptist Missions Partners (BMP), an organization under the leadership of Missionary-Pastor Edwin Tan. The conference will be held in La Vista Resort in Pansol, Laguna.

“Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.“For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.”

James 4:14-15