Quiapo Church suspends lay minister accused of abusing minor

By Leslie Ann Aquino

Quiapo Church has suspended the lay minister who allegedly sexually abused a minor.

Devotees flock the Minor de Basilica of the Black Nazarene on first Friday mass at Quiapo Manila dawn Friday, and in preparation to a yearly Traslacion ( Jun Ryan Arañas / MANILA BULLETIN) ( Jun Ryan Arañas / MANILA BULLETIN FILE)

"Even if he is not reporting (for his lay work), he is suspended as lay minister," Father Douglas Badong, parochial vicar of Quiapo Church, said in an interview.

As of now, he said they are still waiting for the lay minister to explain his side.

"We are still waiting for his explanations. We also need to hear his side," said Badong.

"He should face this and prove his innocence," added the priest.

Badong said Quiapo Church will also extend help to the alleged victim.

"What is needed now is to help the child," he said.

"We will help in any way we can. Spiritually, psychologically even financial," added Badong.

Monsignor Hernando Coronel, rector of Quiapo Church, also assured that the church's protocol will be observed in this case.

"The protocol of the church is observed. Pastoral care for the victim and sanction for the offender," he said.

According to a report, police authorities are now looking for the 69-year-old lay minister who was allegedly caught on video sexually abusing a minor.