The Philippines is at the threshold of joining the community of nations in sustaining the universality of absolute divorce when the committee on population and family relations unanimously approved the substitute bill on reinstating absolute divorce.
The Philippines is the only country in the world including all Catholic countries, except the Vatican City, which has not legalized absolute divorce.
The Vatican has an average annual population of only 800 persons, and resident women who get married are not allowed to continue residing in the Vatican which has no maternity clinic.
Absolute divorce is not for all married couples like in the Philippines where the overwhelming majority of spouses are in happy and harmonious unions.
The liberation accorded by absolute divorce is for exceptional cases where spouses, particularly wives, are imprisoned in irremediably ruined marriages and dysfunctional unions.
For the battered, deserted, and neglected wives, it is the opportunity for them to regain their humanity, self-respect, and freedom from a hapless and hellish marriage.
Paraphrasing the Supreme Court in Te v. Te, the dissolution of an ill-fated marital union is a merciful burial of a long-dead marriage.
An absolute divorce law is constitutional despite the prescriptions by the Constitution on the sanctity of marriage and its being the foundation of the family.
In legalizing absolute divorce, the State does not destroy the institution of marriage because a judicial decree granting divorce is after the fact of a marriage which has been irretrievably put asunder by human frailty and mortal imperfections.
Verily, the Constitution does not prohibit the Congress from enacting an absolute divorce law. In fact, the Commissioners of the 1986 Constitutional Commission, led by Fr. Joaquin Bernas, were unanimous in their position that the Congress can legislate an absolute divorce law.
EDCEL C. LAGMAN