Female inmates to join more religious activities

By: Victor Anthony V. Silva June 11,2015 - 12:56 AM
Bro. Francis Nacional (right) of the Most Holy Name of Jesus Missionaries conducts spiritual counseling to the female inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC).(CDN/JUNJIE MENDOZA)

Bro. Francis Nacional (right) of the Most Holy Name of Jesus Missionaries conducts spiritual counseling to the female inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC).(CDN/JUNJIE MENDOZA)

Female  inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) will be encouraged to join religious and physical activities to avoid a repeat of the  fits of hsyteria exhibited by 11 of them last Monday and Tuesday.

READ:

Two female inmates go berserk inside jail

Six more inmates go berserk inside jail

“We will encourage the female inmates to be more active in the activities here like religious activities so that they won’t be bored or lonely inside their cells,” jail consultant Marco Toral said.

The strange behavior,   which happened starting  Monday afternoon, alarmed officials  who feared they were possessed by evil spirits.

READ: ‘Possessed’? 8 female inmates hysterical

The female inmates would shout and speak in strange voices and experience convulsions.  A 12th inmate, a male boxer, followed suit.

READ: Mass hysteria afflicts three more female inmates, one male inmate in CPDRC

All 12 inmates were returned to their cells and appeared to have calmed down yesterday.

“Lying down and sitting all day inside a prison cell would probably drive anyone crazy,” Toral said.

READ:

CCMC agrees to forgo requirements for physical exams of detainees

REST, PRAYERS FOR INMATES

Activities

He said he will also convince the female inmates to participate in sports, like volleyball.

Religious groups like the Catholic Archdiocesan Prison Apostolate (CAPA) and a Born Again church have activities inside the facility like  Bible study  and seminars.

A  Mass is also held every Sunday inside the jail chapel.

Toral said he will ask Msgr. Fred Kriekenbeek, the official exorcist of the Archdiocese of Cebu, to bless the jail facility again.

“There are supernatural forces at work here,” he said.

READ RELATED STORY: Hysteria behind bars

Convulsions

Spiritual counseling was given yesterday for all female inmates by a representative of the group Most Holy Name of Jesus Missionaries, based in barangay Mabolo, Cebu City.

Brother Francis Nacional, who was invited by CAPA, said spirit possession is brought about by a person’s sins, anger, and rebellion, among others.

He encouraged the inmates to cleanse their bodies of “evil” and fill it with love.

At one point during his talk, one female inmate stiffened and started convulsing. She was among the 12 inmates that went hysterical.

“These spirits like attention,” said Nacional, as all eyes shifted from him to the shaking inmate.

Accredited

CAPA laypersons and male inmates removed her from the rest of the audience and took her to the side.

She was fanned and prayed over until she stopped shaking.

The missionary group is an independent association established in 2010 and is not affiliated with any existing religious order.

A group representative said they are accredited by the Cebu Archdiocese.

Hysterical

One of the first female inmates who went into a hysterical fit last Monday was well and couldn’t remember what happened anymore.

“I don’t even remember how I got these bruises,” she told reporters, showing bruises on her upper left arm.

The 34-year old inmate was pinned down by several men last Monday when she started thrashing in her cell, shouting expletives.

After the incident, she is now carrying with her a holy rosary to protect herself.

Post partum

Psychologist Rose Gonato of the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center’s (VSMMC) Pink Room, said the inmates may have manifested signs of psychological stress.

Gonato, who visited the inmates last Tuesday afternoon, said they displayed symptoms similar to that of mass hysteria.

But she said nothing is definite yet since she hasn’t actually spoken to the prisoners.

Inmates who saw how the first two inmates behaved may have also mimicked the same symptoms out of fear, Gonato said.

Based on information she gathered from PHO nurses, one of the first two inmates that went berserk just gave birth.

She said the inmate may be experiencing post-partum stress.

Gonato said she would strongly recommend for the jail to hire an in-house psychiatrist.

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TAGS: Archdioces of Cebu, Archdiocesan, Archdiocese of Cebu, barangay Mabolo, blessing of CPDRC, Born Again Church, Brother Francis Nacional, Capa, Catholic Archdiocesan Prison Apostolate Born Again, Cebu, Cebu City, Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center, CPDRC, Hysteria, Mabolo, Marco Toral, mass hysteria, Most Holy Name of Jesus Missionaries, PHO nurse, possessed, possession, religious physical activities, Rose Gonato, Spiritual counseling, Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center

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