Fil-Am ex-INC member says suing church was a matter of principle

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. – Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) is the only church Virginia-based Filipina Lilibeth Rose ever knew. She was born into it and was an active member for decades.

But when the INC leadership became embroiled in corruption allegations this year, Rose started questioning the INC leadership on her Facebook page. She claimed, she outspokenness got her expelled in August.

“Iglesia ni Cristo has a lot of money. That’s fine if they do. But they need to use it for a good of the church,” she said.

When she was an INC member, Rose said she would donate thousands of dollars a year to the church. But when she was expelled, she wanted to take back what she donated to the church’s December worship service. The amount: $140.

She pointed out, “That amount is nothing. But I thought, if they expelled me, I cannot possibly give that. It’s up to me to put it somewhere else, if I want to give it to another church. That’s mine.”

She said she asked the church to give her back her money repeatedly. But she said the INC refused. So she filed a civil claim for money before a Virginia court. But last week, the court denied her petition. The judge reportedly pointed out that her donation was made voluntarily.

Even if she lost to the INC in court, she said she’s at peace. The point is, she said, was that she did not back down in this seemingly David versus Goliath fight.

“It’s all worth it. It’s all worth it for me. I’m a fighter,” she expressed.

She corrected other media reports that said she was asking for all of her weekly donations to the church to be returned to her. She also denied reports that she was influenced by a group of disgruntled ex-INC members. She stressed, “I have my own mind.”

She sent this message to a church she once belonged to, a church that defeated her in court: “Do you think it’s a win for the church when there are people struggling, hurting? Is that a win? It’s not a win.”

ABS-CBN News tried to get the side of the INC’s U.S. headquarters in Burlingame, Calif. They have yet to issue a statement.

You may contact Henni Espinosa at henni_espinosa@abs-cbn.com for more information.

2 Comments on this post.

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  • Kenikeni
    18 December 2015 at 11:37 am - Reply

    INC is a cult!!

    • Arbi
      19 December 2015 at 4:30 pm - Reply

      indeed …….they wont eat dinuguan w/o puto on the side

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