Overseas Filipinos weigh in on INC controversy
MANILA, Philippines – Recent headlines detailing turmoil within the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) have been making waves in the online community this week. Joining in the conversation are Filipino netizens from around the globe voicing their opinions on the emerging conflict within the powerful church.
The controversy raised several questions about the religious organization. Both members and outsiders weighed in on the issues of the church leadership, media reception, and government intervention.
INC is a global religious organization. The first overseas INC congregation was set up in Honolulu in 1968. There are at least 2.5 million of members worldwide, with churches across the globe.
While a number of local INC followers expressed their concern for Angel and Tenny Manalo’s plea for help, several Filipinos abroad were skeptical about the news. (READ: INC followers weigh in on Angel Manalo’s claims)
Grace Nieva commented on an article posted on the Facebook page, "Global OFW Voices," and voiced her suspicions of the organization’s reputation for secrecy: “Puro pagtatakip kahit magsabi ng katotohanan mga yan.mlakas ang koneksyn nyn. mantakin m pulis at mayor bistek di nakapasok? para makitang kung tlaga na ok cla sa loob? pangalanan dn nla dpt ung sampung myembro na dinukot .at sagutin mga ktanungan. eh wala .matigas cla.”
(It's always a coverup even if they say it's the truth. They have strong connections. Even the police and Mayor Herbert Bautista were not able to get in? To see if they were really okay? They should also name the 10 members who were allegedly abducted, and answer the questions. But nothing. They're too strong.)
A Filipino couple from Boston also expressed their skepticism about theactions taken by Angel Manalo but fould it difficult to draw conclusions due to the lack of information.
The husband said, “They should have just fixed things internally....They should have gone to the cops or authorities not YouTube.” The wife added, “I don't really understand what [Angel Manalo] is trying to do. I wonder if it's really about exposing corruption or they had some other disagreement and he's trying to get back at his brother.”
Others defended the INC, among them commenters on the "OFW Bayani Ka" Facebook page. An OFW named Marcializa Tanilon Pableo from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, requested others: “Stop commenting on INC because we don’t know the full story. Whatever destructive things are said towards the INC they can never tear it apart.”
Similarly, INC members in the Philippines continued to show support online calling the incident a "trial" and a "blessing in disguise."
The incident comes just days before the 101st anniversary of the founding of the Iglesia ni Cristo. Read more social media reactions to the Iglesia Ni Cristo issue here. – Rappler.com