10 inmates marry inside CPDRC

By: Peter L. Romanillos July 21,2014 - 03:34 AM

EVEN behind prison bars, inmate Renaldo Arsenal and his live-in partner, Maribel, were still able to exchange their “I dos” inside the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) last Thursday.

The couple has been together for 13 years now. They were all smiles when they sealed their union with 10 other pairs in a mass wedding inside the jail facility.

“Sayon ra man basta naa lay communication og naa lang dalaw,” said Renaldo in an interview after the ceremony. (With constant communication and visiting days, it’s not that difficult.)

Most of the couples who received the sacrament of matrimony had already lived in one roof before their other half served jail time, said Jail Warden Romeo Manansala, who along with Capitol jail consultant Marco Toral initiated the event after noticing that a number of visitors in CPDRC were “live-in partners” of the male inmates.

Through the ceremony, they want inmates to “live a regular life” – the aim of all their programs which includes livelihood trainings and primary and secondary education inside the facility.

“We did this so that their relationship will be given a blessing. Some of them already have children so we want them to have the mindset that there’s still hope even in jail,” he told Cebu Daily News.

Preparations for the wedding started as early as May with the help of the Missionaries of Charity.

The religious congregation took care of the required documents such as securing the marriage certificates for the couples.

After the ceremony, the newly-weds and their visiting families shared a meal with 15 roasted pigs (lechon) donated by Capitol officials.

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TAGS: CPDRC, dancing inmates, inmates, marriage, regular life
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