Church exec condemns disruption of Holy Mass during Carbon Market demolition

·2 min read

AN OFFICIAL of the Archdiocese of Cebu condemned local police and personnel of the Cebu City Government for disrupting a Holy Mass being conducted at the Carbon Public Market on Monday, July 18, 2022, in solidarity with vendors whose stalls were facing demolition.

In a statement, Fr. Nazario Ace Vocales, a vicar for the Archdiocese's Social Advocacies Arm, condemned the act of local police and demolition personnel to "intentionally began playing loud music" to disrupt the Holy Mass.

"We denounce the gross disrespect of this religious activity and urge the Cebu City Government to take action against the personnel involved," Vocales said.

"It is not enough for them that they are implementing an insensitive and unreasonable directive in demolishing the stalls of our Carbon market vendors who have been burdened by the hardships of the pandemic and of the recent economic dislocations we are all experiencing. They take delight in the suffering of their fellow Cebuanos as they endure the pain and suffering of losing the humble stalls which is the source of the daily livelihood which they and their families rely on," he added.

Vocales also stated his support for the dislocated vendors and urged the Cebu City Government and Megawide Construction Corp., the main proponent of the market's modernization, to implement development without depriving their livelihood.

Quoting Pope Francis' third encyclical, Fratelli tutti, Vocales urged the city to not ignore the plight of the affected vendors in their quest to modernize the public market.

"In the mad rush to 'modernize' and 'beautify' the Carbon Market, we have ignored and even suppressed the voices of those who are actually the most in need of being heard. The policies and directives that result in this kind of governance are 'never with the poor and never of the poor,'" Vocales added.

The demolition of stalls situated outside Carbon Market's Unit 2 was initiated on Friday, July 15, and continued on Monday, July 18.

SunStar Cebu reported that around 80 vendors, mostly members of the Cebu Market Vendors Development Cooperative (CEMVEDCO), lost their stalls during the clearing operations on Friday. (JKV)

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