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259 Long vs. Basa AUTHOR: Miguel M.

Consing
[G.R. Nos. 134963-64; September 27, 2001] NOTES:
TOPIC: Special and Miscellaneous Provisions; Religious The Corporation in this case is "The Church In Quezon City
Societies (Church Assembly Hall), Incorporated", or CHURCH for
PONENTE: Sandoval-Gutierrez, J. short.

The petitioners were kicked out for introducing teachings


that were not in line with that of CHURCH.
FACTS:
 CHURCH was registered with the SEC as a non-stock, non-profit religious corporation for the administration of
its temporalities or the management of its properties.

 The members of the CHURCH vested upon the Board of Directors the absolute power "to preserve and protect
their faith” and to admit and expel a member of the CHURCH.

 Article VII (paragraph 4) of the CHURCH By-laws, provides:


"If it is brought to the notice of the Board of Directors that any member has failed to observe any
regulations and By-laws of the Institution (CHURCH) or the conduct of any member has been
dishonorable or improper or otherwise injurious to the character and interest of the Institution,
the Board of Directors may by resolution without assigning any reason therefor expel such
member from such Institution and he shall then forfeit his interest, rights and privileges in the
Institution."

 The Board started noticing that the petitioners started introducing teachings that were not in line with that of
CHURCH. The petitioners were warned that if they persist in their improper conduct, they will be kicked out of
CHURCH, but they ignored these warnings.

 Eventually, the Board held a meeting and adopted a resolution which essentially dropped the petitioners from
membership in the CHURCH. This resolution was signed by a majority of the Directors (4 out of 6).

 The petitioners filed separate cases with the SEC questioning the validity of their expulsion on the ground that it
was made without prior notice and hearing.

 The SEC denied the petition and reasoned that the expulsion was in accordance with the CHURCH By-laws (as
quoted above). It reasoned that "the notice referred to (in par. 4) is notice to the Board of Directors of the grounds
for expulsion enumerated therein and not notice to the (erring) members.
ISSUE(S):
Was the expulsion of the petitioners from CHURCH valid?

HELD/RATIO:
Yes. The By-laws of the CHURCH, which the members have expressly adhered to, does not require the Board of Directors
to give prior notice to the erring or dissident members in cases of expulsion.

In Article VII of the By-laws, the only requirements before a member can be expelled or removed from the membership of
the CHURCH are:
(a) That the Board of Directors has been notified that a member has failed to observe any regulations and By-laws of the
CHURCH, or the conduct of any member has been dishonorable or improper or otherwise injurious to the character and
interest of the CHURCH, and
(b) That a resolution is passed by the Board expelling the member concerned, without assigning any reason therefor.

Thus, a member who commits any of the causes for expulsion enumerated in paragraph 4 of Article VII may be expelled
by the Board of Directors, through a resolution, even without giving the erring member any notice prior to his expulsion.
The resolution need not even state the reason for such action.
CASE LAW/ DOCTRINE:
Decisions of the proper church tribunals are conclusive upon the civil tribunals.