Duterte to Filipinos on Easter Sunday: 'Find strength in the narrative of the Resurrection’
MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte hopes Filipinos would find strength in the Risen Christ as the nation observes Easter Sunday in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.
On Sunday, April 9, the President said that the Resurrection of Jesus Christ presents the “hopeful assurance” that there will always be “better and new beginnings.” (WATCH: LIVE: Easter Sunday 2020 - Mass with Pope Francis)
“May this occasion fill us with gladness and enable us to find solace and strength in the narrative of the Resurrection. I trust that its message of forgiveness will inspire us to live our days with gratitude and humility, with further acts of kindness and charity to our families, friends, and to those who are most in need,” Duterte said in a statement.
The President also said he hopes the nation would come together to help shape a better future for the country.
“In this time of renewal, we are reminded of the grace that comes from selfless love that is able to transcend diverse cultures, faiths, backgrounds, and even circumstances,” Duterte said.
“Let this day bring us all profound happiness and purpose as we join hands in shaping a better and brighter future for the entire nation,” he added.
The predominantly Catholic Philippines skipped the traditional Holy Week activities following experts' warning that the virus is easily transmissable in mass gatherings.
The week saw COVID-19 cases in the country surge, with the latest tally at 4,428 as of Saturday, April 11. Of this number, 247 patients have died due to COVID-19, while only 157 have recovered so far.
The Duterte government has long been criticized for mismanaging the COVID-19 pandemic, as medical supplies continue to dwindle and patients die without even knowing it was the coronavirus that had killed them. Millions of indigent Filipinos families are still waiting for the cash aid that has been promised to them.
The lockdown over the entire island of Luzon has been extended to April 30 in a bid to help contain the fast-spreading disease. Lockdowns have also been imposed in parts of the Visayas and Mindanao. – Rappler.com