DUMAGUETE CITY – The Diocese of Dumaguete and the 302nd Brigade of the Philippine Army based in Tanjay City, Negros Oriental will partner once more to address social issues brought about by insurgency in the province.
Msgr. Julius Perpetuo Heruela, a parish priest in Dauin town, said the Church, Military and Police Advisory Group (CMPAG) will be revived.
The CMPAG became inactive following the reassignment of then Dumaguete Bishop John Du as Palo, Leyte archbishop in 2012.
Bishop Julito Cortes of the Diocese of Dumaguete tasked Heruela to begin the process of reviving the CMPAG.
“We will be reviving the Church, Military, and Police Advisory Group (CMPAG) in Negros Oriental in the coming months to jumpstart this collaboration as instructed by Bishop Julito Cortes, to formally address the issues that have been discussed during their meeting recently with Brig. Gen. Joey Escanillas,” Heruela told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) on Friday afternoon.
Escanillas, 302nd brigade commander, paid a courtesy call on the bishop Thursday afternoon in this capital city and discussed the peace and security situation in the province.
The partnership will include livelihood programs, spiritual enlightenment, and values formation for former rebels.
Fr. Hendrix Alar, the diocesan coordinator for disaster response, was also present during the courtesy call and asked Escanillas to help the church identify groups that may have links with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army.
The CMPAG was formed in 2008 with the church represented by the four dioceses in Negros Island -- the Dioceses of Bacolod, Kabankalan, San Carlos and Dumaguete -- to help achieve peace, security, and development in Negros Island. (PNA)