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Cebu News

Chapel Masses in Cebu City suspended for entire July

Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon - The Freeman
Chapel Masses in Cebu City suspended for entire July
“Chapel masses, particularly novena, fiesta and monthly masses in Cebu City, are temporarily suspended due to the rising COVID-19 cases,” it said.

CEBU, Philippines —  The Chancery of the Archdiocese of Cebu has suspended fiesta-related novenas and masses in barangay chapels in Cebu City for the entire month of July owing to the recent spike in COVID-19 cases.

“Chapel masses, particularly novena, fiesta and monthly masses in Cebu City, are temporarily suspended due to the rising COVID-19 cases,” it said.

The chancery made the announcement yesterday right after the coordination meeting with the Cebu City Emergency Operations Center (EOC).

Archdiocese spokesperson Msgr. Joseph Tan stressed that the ban is only for the chapels in the city.

“Prohibition is for Cebu City areas only. Walay labot other barrio chaples outside Cebu City,” he said.

Father Jonathan Rubin, head of the Social Media Communications of the Cebu Archdiocese, said the prohibition is among the major changes in the archdiocese’s liturgical health protocols for the parishes in the city.

Chapels being referred to in the notice from the Office of Monsignor Renato Beltran, who is the chancellor of the Archdiocese, are those belonging to the parishes and barrios where health and safety protocols can be “hardly maintained.”

Rubin said a circular on the liturgical changes for city parishes will be issued this week.

By the end of the month, he added, that there will be an assessment on said changes.

EOC earlier appealed to the archdiocese to suspend novenas and masses in village chapels in the city.

City Councilor Joel Garganera earlier said there is a need to impose more stringent measures because current data show that the new cases are “so widespread.”

By this, the councilor meant there are now more sources of new infections, as compared to the previous week when most new cases only came from a construction site.

Monitoring

Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) personnel and force multipliers will be deployed in all barangays to make sure no chapel masses and other religious activities are held.

Police Colonel Wilbert Parilla, CCPO deputy city director for operations, said all police station chiefs will be notified about it today.

The station chiefs will then coordinate with the barangay officials under their respective areas of responsibility.

“Considering nga naa sad tay mga police sa barangay, we have the task force, and other force multipliers nga maka-monitor sa tanang mga sitios nga kinahanglan nila i-follow,” said Parilla.

Another meeting

After church officials, the EOC is also scheduled to meet with other sectors to discuss ways to prevent another surge in cases.

EOC will meet with the transport sector and owners of bars and restaurants in Panagdait in Barangay Kasambagan and in Barangay Banilad.

“COVID is very much around, and based on our contact-tracing data, every gathering contributes to the rise in our cases. We need a united approach to all sectors in order to bring our cases down,” he added.

Latest Department of Health-7 data show that Cebu City’s active cases are once again nearing the 900-mark.

It has 895, including 29 new cases recorded last July 5.

The city reported a total of 25,971 cases—24,195 recoveries, 881 deaths and 895 active cases. — Dominic I. Dilao, UV Intern, KQD (FREEMAN)

MASS

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