MANILA - After drawing the ire of several Catholic bishops, President Rodrigo Duterte is now also being criticized by the country's evangelical churches after his controversial remark calling God "stupid."
On Tuesday, the Philippine Council of Evangelical Churches (PCEC) released a statement saying they are "immensely offended" by Duterte's tirades against God and the Bible's teachings on creation.
"PCEC finds it completely inappropriate for our nation’s president to derisively curse at the God of the Christian faith, who is deeply worshipped not only by a majority of Filipinos but also by a vast number of people from all over the world," the statement said.
The group added that in view of the diversity of faith traditions, every Filipino is mandated to respect those of other faith convictions, including the president.
"History teaches us that religious intolerance can lead to animosity and violent conflict," the group said. "PCEC therefore denounces insulting another person’s religion, which sadly, the President has on several occasions demonstrated."
The PCEC is now appealing to the President to refrain from issuing statements against the Christian faith. The group is also calling for a dialogue between Duterte and leaders of different Christian denominations.
Established in 1965, the PCEC said they are composed of more than 30,000 congregations nationwide.
Earlier, several Catholic bishops, have expressed their indignation over the President's recent tirades against the Church and even God.
Malacañang on Tuesday announced that the President has formed a committee to hold a dialogue with Church leaders.