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Mandatory Bible reading in public schools seeks approval

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A lawmaker has filed a measure making Bible reading mandatory in public elementary and secondary schools.

Bienvenido “Benny” Abante, Jr., the Filipino House Minority Leader, who is also a pastor, believes that making Bible reading mandatory for students will make a huge impact in the life of Filipinos.

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“If only the Bible is read, proclaimed, obeyed, and practiced, the Philippines, our beloved and only Country, would be a much better place to live in, and our government would be a government of honesty, righteousness, and order,” Abante said in his explanatory note.

House Bill 2069 or the Mandatory Bible Reading Act of 2019 provides for the reading, discussion, and examination of the Bible in the English and Filipino language. Muslim students will read and discuss the Koran, the central religious text of Islam, said Abante.

“While we have the identity of being the only ‘Christian’ nation in Asia, it seems that we have not truly appreciated the relevance, importance and power of one Book, called the Bible,” he added.

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Meanwhile, a lawyer said that making Bible reading mandatory in all public elementary and secondary schools will be a violation of the Constitution.

Atty. Joseph Noel Estrada / Facebook

On a Manilla Bulletin article, Lawyer and education advocate Atty. Joseph Noel Estrada said that the proposal will be “violative of the principle of separation of Church and State and the Non-Establishment of religion provision in our Constitution.”

Moreover, DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones said that the proposed mandatory bible reading needs a careful study and consideration since it may raise a lot of questions and may cause a lot of debates from various sectors.

“We have to think very, very carefully about making it mandatory for public schools because you have the separation of Church and State to consider and that’s Constitutional,” said Briones.

There’s no assurance the bill will be passed, but if it is, for sure there will be a challenge to it.

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30 thoughts on “Mandatory Bible reading in public schools seeks approval”

  1. Having studied in a school (during my Elem and Highschool years – at the time both of my parents are working abroad) where bible is being taught and discovered has greatly and POSITIVELY impacted my life. I AM NOT PERFECT but the WORD (the Bible ) GUIDEd me to make fewer mistakes and CORRECTED me several times especially during my younger years. It PRACTICALly helped and is STILL HELPING me up to now make better choices and GOOD decisions . It teaches people how to LOVE God and others as well and be better if not the best citizens of this nation, world and of heaven.
    WHy NOT include reading Bible to our schools? After all WISE PEOPLE like King Solomon, Einsten, Martin Luther King, Galileo and etc have studied and promoted it also..

  2. Anton Miguel P. jiz De Ortega

    Hope you do realize that you use a language of a country that was founded on Judeo-Christian Values straight from the Bible. For centuries now her greatness is sustained by such values. Can you think of a society where to kill, steal, lie, disrespect others is allowed? Absolute chaos! Bible Values are foundational to every human society and laws of all lands. No one escapes the Bible. Either you fall for it or it falls on you!

    1. Have you ever looked beyond your own religion? Ph may be predominantly catholic but isn’t it wrong to be imposing and ignore all the other religions our people practice? Buddhism holds moral values. As does Islam and even the precolonial times, our ancestors had rules in place.

      Also, Section 5 of Bill of Rights.

  3. Just in time. GOD said it is for us to know, study, meditate,memorize and apply God’s word. It is the spiritual manna that keep us glorifying God with the right motives. Whether this rigtheous bill will be approved or not, Philippines, the Filipinos all over the world are becoming bible-believing Christians. They are our God-given missionaries spreading the word of God. I support this bill together with my family with prayers.

  4. Christian denominations (other than Catholics) will have its opportunity to indoctrinate the innocent, and populations between several denominations will increase, and Catholics (if some pupils are) will decrease significantly and will be blinded by the indoctrinated teachings of those other than Catholicism. Don’t get me wrong, somewhat a good plan (to some, but not me), but because its in the constitution, and if this becomes a law, we must not allow that to happen.
    Yes, benefits will come, but a bigger price will pay; egoistic-minded people will form because of the beliefs indoctrinated to them.

  5. Kung gusto ng mga mambabatas ay maraming paraan na ito ay maisasakatuparan; kung ayaw ay marami ding dahilan, (pera/kasikatan/makasarili, etc.), para ito ay mabusalan.

  6. No. Why not save a step and teach theology or comparative religion. If mandatory Bible study will indeed be mandatory, cherry picking must be a no no. We must read the Bible in it’s entirety. Including the heinous atrocities like Numbers 31 where men women and children were slaughtered but virgin girls were kept alive as property and 1 Timothy 2 where a woman must stay silent.

  7. 1. No specific religion will be sided. The lawmaker only wants to open one child’s vision on what life is really about. It is for the child to decide whether he/she would explore the bible.
    2. Students are being developed physically, emotionally and mentally at school. Why not spiritually? This will make holistic growth, isn’t it? Which, if you don’t know, is the ultimate goal of education.
    3. How did he violate the constitution by wanting this bill to pass? When, in constitution it is clearly stated that “The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference, shall forever be allowed. ” Isn’t what he doing simply a part of free exercise of religious profession? The article stated that Muslim schools may use their Qoran.
    4. He is not forcing students to learn it. It is sti up to the child whether he would explore the bible or not.
    5. When you know that God is for you, who can be against you. Romans 8:31

    1. @Jeanette
      1. How so? The bible they are talking about is obviously of the catholic faith. Will they also read the Qur’an or some other religious text? A child’s mind is gullible. Let them explore religions when they are already at legal age.
      2. Is Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao/ Values Education and GMRC not enough? The goal of education is to raise responsible citizens who further the development of the country.
      3. The bill of rights clearly states WITHOUT PREFERENCE. This shows preference to the catholic faith.
      4. MANDATORY means they have to whether the child likes it or not.
      5. Quoting the bible is not a valid argument.

  8. I once was lost but now I’m found t’was blind but now I see!
    It’s all because somebody did open a book called Bible to me.
    Not necessarily to make it mandatory but just allow the Bible be shared with the kids. Inside or outside the school campuses….

  9. Clear violation of the Constitution. Stop shoving your beliefs down everyone’s throats. Not everyone in the Philippines is Christian. It’s okay to share your beliefs if that’s your mission but you don’t force it on people by making it mandatory.

  10. For thosen who are not Christians, it is your time to ask and answer relevant question about the bible and life. It is basically teaching the students how to scrutinize the relevanve of once own belief. Finding out if you’re a swimmer of a drifter.

  11. salamat DEPED kaisa ako sa ganitong gawain Im sure marami tayong kabataan na titino ang ugali dahil mamumulat sila sa pagkatakot at pananampalataya sa Diyos Salamat Mahal na Presidente Duterte dahil isa kang lider na kumikilala sa Panginoon Jesus mapalad ang aming bayan. Pagpalain ka ng Diyos maging ang iyong buong pamilya

  12. Lone Ranger From the Far Side

    Goodness, haven’t we learned anything from the chaos happening in the middle east? This will only spark irrational thinking once these already hypocrite kids, takes the bible literally. Next thing we know, civil unreast. War. Chaos. We have hundreds of years of history to learn from and look into. I think we all know where this will lead. Let the people have their choice on individuality. Let them believe what they want to believe in instead of shoving faith on their faces just because some law maker was bored one Friday afternoon….

  13. that law-maker should read up and memorize the foremost and primary law of the country AND IT IS NOT THE BIBLE. this is a CLEAR VIOLATION OF THE CONSTITUTION. unless such lawmaker is prepared to provide in such proposed law that the quran will also be mandatory as well as the sacred books of ALL THE MORE THAN 4,000 RELIGIONS IN THE WORLD inlcuding the “sacred tenets” of the NON-RELIGIOUS

  14. No!!! Why forced someone to read it by putting it as mandatory? Reading bible won’t make u a better person and if is a proven thing as per whoever put this as law. Try it first in prison not incorporating it as part of educational system. How about the Muslims studying in non muslim school what are you going to do?

  15. i believe if the Bible is being read inside the classroom as one subject, we’re gonna have a productive and a healthy generation.A lot of youngs testified how they’ve changed,though they were then drug addicts, criminals and many more,were renewed because of reading the Bible. Our very own senator manny Pacquiao,e was then a gambler,drunkards and womanizer as he testified, yet now was changed, because of Bible reading. So i pray that Bible reading be a part of our curriculum.

  16. So funny while reading comments here some of you based about the relagion and preaching. LOL!
    For your information that mandatory is so useful to teach and to know the Gods word and the word of God teach us to change everything not to change relagion and to preach. Specially to our Generations right now . You guys luck of faith you know God but you didn’t know the whole identity of Christ. We all sinners and we need the grow our faith. The relagion can’t even save us but the relationship of God does.

  17. LOL! Stop blinding humans with religion! That $%@# is useless because its all a fairytale! Filipinos aint christians if spaniards didnt came! Keep that in mind ^&*# $!*^$*@! And if this gets a green light might as well tax the churches!!!!

  18. From our Constitution:
    ARTICLE 2, SECTION 6. The separation of Church and State shall be inviolable.
    ARTICLE 3, SECTION 5. No law shall be made respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference, shall forever be allowed. No religious test shall be required for the exercise of civil or political rights.
    Him being a pastor and government official is already a violation of Article 2.
    Him calling for mandatory Bible reading in public schools is a violation of Article 3.
    If you wanna make this mandatory, you make Quran reading mandatory, you make Torah reading mandatory, you make it mandatory to read the Satanic bible, and every other holy book for every other religion on this archipelago.

  19. We are a purely constitutional state and saying that anything is above the constitution means disregard of the highest law of the land, the organic law. And that organic law guarantees freedom from mandatory religious practices because not doing so would not be partial to the members of the state who do not belong to any religious establishment.

  20. No. Once students take the bible literally, problems will arise like irrational thinking. Public schools should not teach faith, as it is an institution for teaching, not preaching. There are better things to teach, and never force your faith upon others.

  21. Please no. What about the atheists like me? Shoving religion down our throats? That sucks. We already have Values Education plus GMRC in the next school year (I think)… Let the church do that… I’m against Mandatory Bible Reading

  22. The Word of God is above than the Constitution. Bible reading is excellent, we can know the mind of God, know the will of God. Love to read the Bible, live it, obey it, share it and can change lives of every Filipino or other national.

  23. I believe reading the Bible (and obeying it)
    will positively impact lives and the nation.
    We have Presidential Proclamation 124, RA 11163.
    We recognize our need for God and His Word, the Bible to direct and guide us in our life and work.
    I support mandatory Bible reading in schools.

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