Bishop asks IATF to allow ‘Simbang Gabi, Palace says “may be possible”

  • Spokesperson Harry Roque said they are looking at the possibility of allowing Simbang Gabi if the COVID-19 infection rate goes down
  • He said residents must continue following health protocols so the quarantine classification will be less strict
  • Manila Bishop Broderick Pabillo asked local officials to shorten curfew hours to 3 a.m. from 5 a.m. as more mass services can accommodate more faithful

Malacañang said they are still considering the possibility of allowing ‘Simbang Gabi’ or Dawn Mass this year; depending on the COVID-19 infection rate.

Image by PNA

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said they are not closing the idea of allowing the Catholic tradition of ‘Simbang Gabi’ to continue this year. However, they said the decision is still yet to be made depending on the situation of the health crisis.

In an interview with Super Radyo DZBB, Roque said that the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases will continue looking into the matter.

“Titignan naman po natin ‘yan. Kapag naman po talagang ang attack rate at health capacity ay nakita na nag-i-improve, puwede namang mag-MGCQ (We’ll see. If the attack rate and health capacity improve, we can shift to the modified general community quarantine),” Roque said.

Roque said the fate of the quarantine classification of Manila will be based on how well the residents follow the health protocols.

“Nakasalalay po sa ating pasusunod sa ‘Mask, Hugas, Iwas’ kung pupwede talaga tayong magkaroon ng mas maraming tao na pupunta ng simbahan para sa Simbang Gabi,” he said.

This statement was in response to an earlier appeal of the Catholic Church to allow ‘Simbang Gabi’ this year. Manila Bishop Broderick Pabillo asked local officials to shorten curfew hours to 3 a.m. from 5 a.m. as more mass services can accommodate more faithful.

Image by GMA

He said, “Damihan yung misa para magkaroon ng physical distancing. Kung marami ang misa, kakalat ang tao.”

He said they are willing to hold masses from 6:00 in the evening until 6:00 in the morning.