Annual CBCP endorses COVID-19 Vaccine

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) held their Plenary Assembly Press Conference online for the first time [through ZOOM] from January 26 to 27, 2021.
The press conference had included reports of the assessment of bishops of the nine (9) regions that they represent, in the context of the pandemic; the celebration of the 500 Years of Christianity in the Philippines with the designation of the Jubilee churches in each diocese.
“We discussed about the Jubilee churches to be designated in each diocese, and the opening of the Holy Door in the cathedral and jubilee churches, and other activities.” CBCP President, The Most Rev. Romulo Valles, Archbishop of Davao, said in the Press Conference last Thursday.
The Archbishop announced that the Jubilee Year will be opening on the 4th of April, 2021, Easter Sunday, and will be closing on the 18th of April, 2022 with the Second National Mission Congress in Cebu.
Another important topic discussed was the ongoing challenge among the faithful and the Church because of the ongoing threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly as to how the celebrations will be celebrated by the faithful amidst the community quarantine.
“On the liturgical side of the celebration, we will celebrate it according to the present health protocols […] That would mean also that since not many can be accommodated in our churches, [that would mean also] creativity on the part of the dioceses and parishes to look for other venues where the Mass can be celebrated,” Archbishop Valles said.
“[But] second, with that limitation, we would continue—and, that’s a new discovery—to use social media platforms and livestreaming of activitie,” he added.
In light of the Church’s actions amid the pandemic, the CBCP has expressed willingness to be publicly vaccinated against the coronavirus disease 2019 in order to encourage the people to be inoculated. The Church leaders also offered the church facilities to become venues for vaccination.
“[The Holy See says that] The Holy Father Pope Francis and Pope-Emeritus Benedict XVI, they have [already] been vaccinated,” said Abp. Valles.
“The Vatican says, in this sense, when ethically irreproachable COVID-19 vaccines are not available (e.g. in countries where vaccines without ethical problems are not made available to physicians and patients, or where their distribution is more difficult due to special storage and transport conditions, or when various types of vaccines are distributed in the same country, but health authorities do not allow citizens to choose the vaccine with which to be inoculated), it is morally acceptable to receive COVID-19 vaccines that have used cell lines from aborted fetuses in their research and production process.” He read.
With this, the Church strongly encourages the Filipinos to have the COVID-19 vaccine amid the prevailing scare of vaccines; with the bishops and priests encouraged to be vaccinated publicly to encourage the faithful.
By: Althea De Guzman
Volunteer Writer
Photo Credit: CBCP News

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