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Cebu shrine accused of refusing requiem Mass, burial to resident

July 30, 2014 12:04pm
The Catholic Church in Cebu again found itself in another controversy, this time over a shrine's alleged refusal to perform a requiem Mass and burial for a local resident.

Relatives of Filemon Borden claimed the Archdiocesan Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus refused the services because it claimed Borden was a member of a cult.

But the shrine clarified it declined to render these services because Borden, a resident of Sitio Lower Panabang in Barangay Apas in Cebu City, is not a Catholic, GMA Cebu's Greggy Magdadaro reported.

Borden was to be buried last Sunday after a Mass at the St. Jude church, which falls under the archdiocesan shrine's jurisdiction.

Also, Borden's family was not allowed to have Borden buried at a Catholic cemetery.

Maricris Borden-Cañete, Borden's daughter, said it was unfair because her father is not a cult member. She also said her father's baptismal certificate shows he is Catholic.

The Borden family members also said that while some of them belong to religious groups outside the Catholic Church, their patriarch is a Catholic.

On the other hand, officials of the archdiocesan shrine said their investigation showed Filemon was a member of the Apostolic Catholic Church, which is outside the Roman Catholic Church.

As such, they said they cannot allow a requiem Mass or burial in a Catholic cemetery for him.

With this, the Borden family decided to have the requiem Mass at a chapel of the Apostolic Catholic Church in Barangay Apas, and have him buried in a private cemetery.

It was the latest Church-related controversy in the Visayas, after an Iloilo priest got into trouble for alleged rude behavior.

Earlier this month, GMA Iloilo reported several residents of Santa Barbara in Iloilo prepared a petition to remove Msgr. Juanito Tuvilla as parish priest after he allegedly showed rude behavior to at least two families mourning their dearly departed.

In one instance last July 19, Tuvilla reportedly came late for a Mass for a woman who was to be buried that day, and scolded those in attendance.

On the same day, Tuvilla reportedly interrupted another funeral Mass being officiated by the assistant parish priest.

The allegations against the priest have prompted the officials of Barangay Dalid in Sta. Barbara to draft a petition to have Tuvilla replaced. Tuvilla did not immediately reply.

Also earlier this month, Fr. Romeo Obach of Mandaue City in Cebu got in hot water after a video went viral showing him humiliating a single mother who was having her baby baptized.

Obach profusely apologized for his action, and sought the single mother to seek forgiveness. Joel Locsin /LBG, GMA News
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