Manila’s parishes to use facilities, transpo assets to help fight COVID-19
MANILA, Philippines – Parishes within the Archdiocese of Manila have pledged to offer the use of their facilities and transportation services to help health workers fighting the COVID-19 outbreak.
According to Manila’s apostolic administrator Bishop Broderick Pabillo, they have asked parishes within their jurisdiction to offer trips for frontline workers, ferrying them from their temporary shelters in churches to hospitals.
Several churches within the diocese are also opening their doors to serve as temporary shelter for hospital staffers and street dwellers while the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) is in effect.
“You can offer your vans to shuttle the health frontliners. They are so grateful that they can find welcome and safe haven in our churches,” Pabillo said in a statement on Monday posted on the website of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP).
“There are now more parishes and religious houses opening their facilities,” he added.
But aside from this assistance, Pabillo said that religious congregations are also moving to assist other people who are at risk of contracting the disease, including those who are working to mitigate the effects of the pandemic.
Since President Rodrigo Duterte placed the whole of Luzon under the ECQ, mass transportation was paralyzed and work was restricted to those in the medical profession and those in service crews. However, the lack of a public transportation mode left health workers walking for kilometers just to reach their workplace.
As of Monday, health officials said that that there are now 1,546 patients infected with COVID-19, 78 of which have already died while at least 42 have recovered.
Worldwide, 713,258 persons have been confirmed to have the latest coronavirus strain, while 33,658 have died from the disease and 148,707 have recovered from it.
In terms of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), the archdiocese will also tend to those who returned from work abroad and are required to undergo self-quarantine.
“The archdiocese is also giving attention to the needs of overseas Filipino workers who have returned from abroad and have become persons under monitoring after possible exposure to the COVID-19 in their place of work outside the country,” CBCP said.
The Department of Foreign Affairs said that as of Monday, there are 348 Filipinos abroad who have contracted the COVID-19, 228 of which are undergoing treatment, while nine have died.
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