MANILA - When Nikki Gil's breakup with Billy Crawford made headlines last year, the Kapamilya actress was made to address speculation that her supposed preference not to have sex until marriage was a factor in the separation.
But before Gil, several other local celebrities have made known their preference to stay a virgin until after getting married to their partners. One thing they in common: they are all Christians.
1. Toni Gonzaga
In a live interview on "Aquino & Abunda Tonight" in February, the 30-year-old actress-host openly admitted that she and her boyfriend of over eight years, film director Paul Soriano, have never shared a bedroom to "avoid temptation."
What she said: "Ako kasi, ang paniniwala ko, at saka kung paano rin ako pinalaki, I think that love should be greater than your lust for each other."
"Naniniwala ako that love should be unconditional. Hindi porke mahal mo ang isang tao, dapat ang kundisyon mo, 'Dapat sexually compatible tayo.' I think that love should be the strong foundation of the marriage, and I think that the trust and the commitment that you want to stay together in the marriage [weigh more]."
Both Gonzaga and Soriano have been vocal of their hopes to get married. The 32-year-old producer, in an interview in June, said he plans to propose to Gonzaga "very soon," once their respective schedules allow them to have a break.
2. Yeng Constantino
During a press conference in January, the 25-year-old singer said she and her boyfriend, Victor Asuncion, have agreed to set clear limitations when it comes to physical intimacy.
What she said: "There's no pre-marital sex. Gano'n talaga. No pre-marital sex, iyan 'yung clear na, 'No to it.' Kasi we want to honor marriage. Kasi, 'diba, ang tagal-tagal kang prineserve ng mga magulang mo, nanay mo, papa mo. Lahat ng paggalit, pananakot para hindi ka lumabas ng bahay, pumarty, pero sa isang iglap, 'It's all gone, Ma.'"
"So, iyon 'yung sa amin, iyon 'yung boundary namin. Kasi once na nag-move ka na into physical intimacy, sobrang magbabago na 'yun. It's another level na you have to save. That's for me."
At the time Constantino opened up about this "no-sex policy," she was seven months into her relationship with Asuncion, who is a worship director at a Christian church. They are each other's first official relationship. The two got engaged in March and are planning to get married in early 2015.
3. Janine Tugonon
The Miss Universe 2012 first runner-up opened up about her relationship with then-boyfriend Jaypee Santos in a joint interview on ANC's "Headstart" in December that year. The two were asked directly whether, as Christians, they agreed to not have sex before marriage.
Janine Tugonon with former boyfriend Jaypee Santos. File photo
What she said: "Wala nang lalaki na ganyan na mag-sa-sacrifice and 'yung rerespetuhin ka nang gano'n, iyong talagang papanindigan na, 'This is my stand, this is my principle.'"
"For me, marriage is sacred. Ngayon kasi, parang nagiging norm na lang, eh, sa tao na, 'Come on, let's do it.' Pero iba pa rin siguro 'yung pakiramdam pag ginawa mo siya after [getting married]."
At the time of the interview, Tugonon and Santos were eight months into their relationship. In April 2013, the beauty queen became the subject of criticisms when she revealed in a live, joint interview with Santos that they had broken up over her ties with The Script vocalist Danny O'Donoghue.
4. Miriam Quiambao
Less than a week after she got engaged to author Ardy Roberto, the Miss Unvierse 1999 first runner-up took to Instagram to detail their "purity pledge," or a promise not to engage in any sexual activity before their wedding.
What they said: "Let it be known that I, Ardy Roberto aka Mr. Pogi, and I, Miriam Quiambao, aka Ms. U, vow before God to protect each other's purity from this day onwards until the day, by God's grace that we are wed. Therefore, we shall not engage in any act that shall ignite sexual desires or passions prematurely, such as passionate kissing (lips-to-lips), pheromone sniffing or foreplay."
"The only expressions of affection allowed are: kissing on the cheek, holding hands and hugging or 'akbay.' I, Ardy Roberto, promise to take the lead in this purity pledge and protect you, Miriam Quiambao, and your testimony. So help us God! In Jesus' name."
Quiambao and Roberto, who is also a Christian motivational speaker, got married in March this year. This is both their second marriage. Roberto's first wife passed away in 2013, while Quiambao was divorced from her former husband Claudio Rondinelli, whom she married in 2004.
5. Nikki Gil
In a live interview on "Aquino & Abunda Tonight" in July, the 27-year-old actress said her decision to stay a virgin until marriage still stands, months after she first opened up about it in a Cosmopolitan interview tackling breakup with Crawford.
What she said: "O, sige, 'yan na ang kapintasan ko! Peope have said, 'Eh, kasi, lalaki. May pangangailangan.' My point exactly! See? Kung 'yan lang pala ang issue, [he didn't really deserve me]. Nobody told me to stay a virgin, or because I'm a stuck-up prude na holy-holy. It's my choice. I've always been ma-pride. If sex is something I value, [gano'n talaga]!"
Four months after her controversial split with Crawford, her boyfriend of five years, Gil admitted starting dating again in November 2013. She is now reportedly in a relationship with businessman BJ Albert, while Crawford has openly admitted his relationship with "It's Showtime" co-host Coleen Garcia.