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Cardinal Quevedo condemns grenade attack on Cotabato Chapel during Bible study in Philippines

CHAPEL BLAST. On Sunday, May 19, 2024, during a Bible service, a grenade detonated within a Santo Nio sanctuary in Cotabato City, resulting in the destruction of Monobloc chairs. (Photo credit: DXOL-FM VIA NDBC NEWS)

Cotabato Archbishop Emeritus Cardinal Orlando Quevedo strongly condemned an explosion at the Santo Niño Chapel, Cotabato City, in Mindanao, Philippines, on May 19, 2024, where about 20 people were gathered conducting a Bible study. 

Cardinal Quevedo emphasized the need to intensify the investigation to hold those responsible for the crime accountable because violence has no place in society.

"As a member of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in the Muslim Mindanao Council of Leaders representing the Christian settler communities and as a Catholic Cardinal, I strongly condemn the grenade bombing of a Catholic chapel in Cotabato City," was part of Cardinal Quevedo's statement in the report of Radio Veritas Philippines.

The report states that at 10:30 on Sunday morning, someone threw a grenade at the people gathered in the chapel in Barangay Rosary Heights 3, Cotabato City. Maribel Abis and Aniceta Tobil sustained injuries in this incident.

"The crime is doubly condemnable when committed against neighbors gathered to worship God in a sacred place,” the prelate added.

The cardinal lamented that the violence occurred during the celebration of Pentecost Sunday, which commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles and Jesus' revelation of peace to humanity.

He then urged the authorities to hold the perpetrators of the violence accountable. “I call upon our security, military and investigative forces to ferret out the perpetrators and bring them to justice," said the cardinal.

Meanwhile, the Archdiocese of Cotabato has assured the mental health of the victims of the explosion in Sto. Niño Chapel.

According to Archbishop Angelito Lampon, addressing the extreme fear of approximately 20 individual victims of the incident is an important step.

"We have scheduled a debriefing for all those who attended the Bible Service that Sunday to help them overcome their trauma," Archbishop Lampon said to Radio Veritas Philippines.

The archbishop explained that the grenade explosion happened while they were singing 'Ama Namin' last Pentecost Sunday.

Archbishop Lampon strongly condemned the violence that injured two people, but he continued to pray for the hearts of those behind the crime to be renewed.

"I condemn the act as very unfortunate, but we pray for the perpetrator of the crime," said Archbishop Lampon.

The prelate considered it a miracle that those who gathered in the chapel survived, with only two people slightly injured.

According to the Philippine National Police's examination of the area, the grenade thrown into the chapel did not cause extreme damage, especially considering the small space of the Sto. Niño Chapel.

Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation, and Unity condemned the violence that occurred during an important Christian community celebration.

He ensured the solidarity and support of the Catholic community of Cotabato and all the people of the Bangsamoro region.

The Philippine National Police continues its investigation to identify the culprits and ascertain the reason for bombing the chapel.


Radio Veritas Asia (RVA), a media platform of the Catholic Church, aims to share Christ. RVA started in 1969 as a continental Catholic radio station to serve Asian countries in their respective local language, thus earning the tag “the Voice of Asian Christianity.”  Responding to the emerging context, RVA embraced media platforms to connect with the global Asian audience via its 21 language websites and various social media platforms.