By Argyll Cyrus Geducos
President Duterte has declared the last week of March 2020 National Week of Prayer as the country continues its fight against the threats posed by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
Under Proclamation No. 934 singed Saturday, Duterte recognized the religious nature of Filipino people, and the vital role of faith in bringing peace, solidarity, compassion, and heroism in times of adversity.
The President then urged the public, regardless of faith, to unite in prayer this week against COVID-19.
“During the aforesaid week, I urge all Filipinos of all faiths, religious traditions, and backgrounds to unite our hearts in prayer as we face the COVID-19 threat, fixing our eyes on the Almighty in this time of afflictions,” the President said in his proclamation.
Duterte, in particular, asked the public to pray for the recovery of those who were suffering from COVID-19, for comfort to those who lost loved ones, and for the protection of everyone, especially the most vulnerable sectors of society.
He likewise urged Filipinos to pray for the strength and endurance for the outstanding medical professional and health workers on the frontlines, military and law enforcers, government officials, personnel dealing with the present threat, and all Filipinos sacrificing their lives to ensure everyone’s safety and security.
“Through prayer, let us, as one nation, find strength to defeat this invisible enemy, with the aid and blessing of God,” Duterte said.
President Duterte has declared a State of Public Health Emergency throughout the entire country due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Last week, the President placed the entire mainland Luzon under an enhanced community quarantine, limiting the movement of people on the island, to contain the pandemic.
He likewise declared the State of Calamity in the entire country for a period of six months due to the rising number of cases in the country and sustained person-to-person and community transmission of the disease.
Based on the Department of Health’s (DOH’s) COVID-19 tracker, the country has 307 cases as of Saturday afternoon. It also recorded 570 persons under investigation (PUIs), and 6,321 persons under monitoring (PUMs).
It also bared that 13 have recovered from the disease but said 19 have died from it. The government has also conducted 1,399 tests for COVID-19.