Faith and fact
PERSPECTIVE - Cherry Piquero-Ballescas (The Freeman) - March 19, 2020 - 12:00am

Fear vs faith, fake news vs facts.

Gratefully, through our fears, we can hold on to faith -- "being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." (Hebrews 11:1)

We cannot see what tomorrow may bring. We do not know how long and how much pain and harm the present pandemic will inflict. We do not know how a post-COVID19 world will be.

What we do know is that no matter the dark clouds, rains, or storms, the sun will certainly appear and shine brightly as it has shone in the past! What we do know is that despite challenges and trials in the past, God saw us through and we are confident, without doubt, that He will deliver us through this present challenge.

In the midst of pandemic and understandably, anxiety and concern, and despite hoarders and panic buyers, we are heartened to see the restoration of humanity among those who are sharing themselves and their resources with others!

This pandemic may result in a more humane world, with the realization that one’s life depends on others that everyone is better off taking best care of each other! Faith in action may yet save this world!

Facts about the present virus and disease are important to keep everyone safe and protected. Facts are showing us that proper effective measures have resulted in declines in positive cases in China and happy, hopeful news of recovery.

Amidst hopeful, positive reports, we have also witnessed the challenging reality posed by the pandemic for the vulnerable – the poor and the elderly especially. If only they have a choice, who among the poor, including the elderly among them, will not want to stay home as advised?

No work, no pay. No sales, no food.

What safety nets can these vulnerable hold on to during this pandemic? Present protocols do not yet have clear contingencies for the financially challenged, the hungry, and the poor. May the needs of the vulnerable be prioritized as their plight is as important as the protocols and rush to contain the virus to keep everyone protected?

While salute, applause and prayers of appreciation and thanksgiving have been offered to all front liners sharing their presence, their time, their service, even their lives to those affected by the Covid-19, the front liners urgently need support systems to be able to proceed with their invaluable service. They badly need hazard pay, transportation, food and other care support for their families they cannot attend to while they are serving the sick.

Facts inform us about the urgency to have widespread testing. Let us hope national and local government units will move to have more testing in the coming days.

This challenging period may be a good time to impose moratorium on all public works and infrastructure funding release and have the funds diverted instead for urgent health and medical purposes!

Yes to more and better equipped hospitals and clinics throughout the country. Yes to regular, sufficient pay for all health providers! The present pandemic is clearly showing us the importance of investing in health-related facilities and personnel over other exorbitant, useless poor intelligence and unnecessary road and other infra projects!

Let us also help in disseminating facts related to the pandemic. There are confirmed, secured news sources as well as emergency numbers made available now.

Let us check how else all of us can contribute our time and effort to containing this pandemic, with faith and facts.

We can choose to stay in fear or in faith - in each other, in everyone and for truth.

May God, our most powerful Protector, accept our united faith and urgent plea for His healing!

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