Supreme Court backs decision saying Celdran guilty of mocking clergy


Posted at Aug 06 2018 08:52 PM

MANILA - The Supreme Court has upheld a 2012 decision which found tour guide and artist Carlos Celdran guilty of "offending religious feelings" after pulling the "Damaso" stunt in Manila Cathedral on September 30, 2010.

In a four-page resolution dated March 21, 2018 but was only released Monday, the Supreme Court First Division affirmed the decision of lower courts convicting Celdran for 'offending religious feelings', a crime punishable under the Revised Penal Code. 

In denying Celdran's appeal before the SC, the First Division said it agrees with the Court of Appeals in its findings that "the acts of petitioner (Celdran) were meant to mock, insult and ridicule those clergy whose beliefs and principles were diametrically opposed to his own."

In his Facebook post, Celdran said: "It's come to pass. My appeal in the Supreme Court has been denied and my sentence is upheld. Three months minimum to a year and a month maximum."


The case stems from Celdran's infamous "Padre Damaso" stunt inside the Manila Cathedral Church on September 30, 2010 during an ecumenical service attended by Cardinal Gaudencio Rosales, the Papal Nuncio, former Philippine Ambassador to Rome Henrietta De Villa, and leaders of different Christian denominations.

Celdran wore a black suit and bore a placard that read "Damaso" to protest the position taken by the church against the then Reproductive Health (RH) Bill, now passed into law.