Harry Roque, a spokesman of President Rodrigo Duterte, confirmed the decision on Feb. 17.
The decision was welcomed joyfully by local Catholic communities, UCA News reported. A group of altar servers in San Jacinto Parish in Quezon City expressed hope that the decision would permit more Masses to be celebrated during Lent and on Sundays.
“We would like to thank our health authorities for listening to the call of our bishops to allow more parishioners to enter churches. We received reports saying that churches are not the spreaders of the virus provided health protocols are followed,” they said, according to UCA News.
Mariel De Guzman, a catechist in Manila Archdiocese, also applauded the decision, saying many Filipinos turn to their faith in this time of psychological difficulty.
“With the economic problems that we [Filipinos] have … job retrenchments, lack of job opportunities, expensive Covid testing, to whom can we go? To Jesus. Only to Christ. He gives us hope during this desperate time,” she said.
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