Baclaran Church has suspended the operation of its community pantry on Wednesdays and Sundays which are common days of worship at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Shrine.
According to Fr. Victorino Cueto, this is after the local Inter-Agency Task Force asked them to avoid opening the pantry on those days so as not to keep up with the influx of churchgoers and novena.
Cueto said they understand the authorities ’concern for the safety of those attending the church so they have also implemented the IATF’s request starting this week.
Apart from health precautions, the day of the church has also been avoided because volunteers are limited to packing donations and tattoos in the pantry. Usually, three priests, three volunteers, and a nun help out in the pantry. Other volunteers will not be able to join simply due to the restriction of today’s MECQ.
The church will try to keep the pantry operating on Tuesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.
It’s been a week since the Laging Saklolo community pantry opened and it’s really nursed.
Community pantry at Baclaran Church closed every Wednesday, Sunday
Last week alone, up to 500 people a day lined up for help from the pantry or more than 2,000 have been helped from donations and the church’s budget as well.
“Hindi naman kami nakikipag-compete. Ang layunin namin ay serbisyo… Long before this pandemic, ginagawa na namin ito,” he said on Teleradyo on Tuesday.
According to Fama, the PNP is not against community pantries.
“Wala naman pong problema do’n sa community pantry. Ang ating PNP ay hindi sumasalungat diyan kasi nga nakakatulong ito bagkos in-appreciate namin,” he said.
“Ang hindi lang talaga maganda dito ay ‘yon na nga dadagdagan ng mga papeletos na laban sa ating gobyerno. Hindi na kami papayag diyan,” Fama added.