Philippine church backs Pacquiao over anti-gay remarks

Johannesburg, Feb.22 (ANI): The Philippine Catholic church has offered its support to boxer Manny Pacquiao after he described gay couples as `worst than animals`, saying that he only quoted what is there in the Bible.

Father Jerome Secillano, executive secretary of the Catholic bishops’ public affairs office, said it was unfair to condemn Pacquiao for echoing the quote from the Bible, Sport24 reported.

The priest, however, said that the eight-division world champion should not have used such offensive language against the homosexual and added that he should respect them.

Secillano insisted that although they respect the lifestyle of homosexuals, he said that the Catholic Church still opposed legalisation of same-sex marriage.

Earlier, Pacquiao cited a Bible quote on his Instagram account reading, “If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.”

The post was up for around two hours and received more than 18,000 likes before being deleted.

Pacquiao saw his reputation take a severe hit when he said that animals are better than homosexuals because they could distinguish between male and female.

Although Pacquiao issued an apology on social media for his insensitive remarks, Sports brand Nike decided to sever its eight-year-old tie with the boxer saying his comments were ‘abhorrent’.

He insisted that God was on his side and that his opinion was based on the Bible but added that his only mistake this week had been to compare people to animals.

His comments sparked outrage on social media as various celebrities slammed the boxer for his insensitive remark.

Pacquiao, who will bid adieu to boxing after his last fight against Timothy Bradley in April, intends to fight for a senate seat in the May elections. (ANI)

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