Philippine Catholic Church defends Manny Pacquiao’s homophobic slurs

A senior member of the Philippine Catholic Church has defended boxer Manny Pacquiao for his controversial comments which insisted gay couples were “worse than animals”. Father Jerome Secillano of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) told a radio station on Sunday (February 21) Pacquiao was not out of line for his comments, as he was only quoting the Bible, reports Gay Star News. “This is really in the Bible. There is this quote he [Pacquiao] uses from the Bible and we cannot change that,’ said Secillano. But the priest added the boxing hero should not have used offensive language, saying the gay community should be respected. “The church says that if this is your lifestyle, if this is your orientation, then we respect that. We cannot condemn them,” said Secillano. The 37-year-old boxer sparked controversy last week after doubling down from comments where he said gay couples were “worse than animals”, which among the backlash saw him also lose a lucrative eight-year endorsement deal with Nike. “If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable,” wrote Pacquiao wrote in a now-deleted social media post. “They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads”. More stories: Gay soldiers’ first kiss as a married couple breaks the internet Is this The Game’s most explicit selfie yet? (NSFW)