Tacloban folk celebrate Holy Child Jesus feast amid COVID-19 threat
TACLOBAN CITY –– People in this city flocked to the church on Tuesday, June 30, to celebrate the feast of the Holy Child Jesus amid the threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
But the celebration was not the same as in previous years.
Only 700 people were allowed inside the church, which used to accommodate more than 1,500.
They wore face masks and had their body temperature taken.
They also wrote their names and contact numbers on pieces of paper in case there is a need for contact tracing.
There were no social and cultural activities in Tacloban.
Among the events canceled were the Miss Tacloban competition, the Sangyaw Festival Parade of Lights, and the Pintados-Kasadyaan Festival of Festivals.
The city government reminded residents not to hold drinking sprees outside their homes and to limit their guests to just 10 people, preferably their relatives.
In his homily, Palo Archbishop John Du, who has ecclesiastical jurisdiction over Tacloban, urged the people to keep their faith alive and to trust in God who has the power to end the pandemic.
“Despite this pandemic, we are gathered here for Señor Santo Niño de Tacloban because our faith is greater than our fears. God’s power will heal us,” he said.
Among those present during the fiesta Mass was Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez and his cousin, Leyte Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez.
As of June 30, Tacloban City has registered 55 cases of COVID-19.
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