THE Police Regional Office (PRO) 7 said it is already prepared for its security for the Holy Week, and the areas in Cebu and other parts of Central Visayas where practicing Catholics gather will be tightly guarded.
This, as Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma announced during his visit to the Police Regional Office 7 headquarters in Cebu City on Monday, March 15, 2021, that the churches will be open for religious activity.
Strict security will be enforced by the PRO 7 for the church activities during the Holy Week to keep the public compliant with the minimum health standards such as social distancing and wearing of masks.
Holy Week begins on Sunday, March 28, 2021 and ends on Saturday, April 3.
Brig. Gen. Ronnie Montejo, chief of the PRO 7, said they already have a security plan for the Holy Week and for areas that are usually crowded by devotees.
Visits to religious sites such as the Way of the Cross were previously banned to avoid the spread of the novel coronavirus disease, cases of which continue to increase in Cebu City and Cebu Province.
However, Palma said the Catholic churches will be open in the morning for the church visits known as “Visita Iglesia,” a practice by devout Catholics during Maundy Thursday, which falls on April 1.
The prelate clarified that health protocols will be strictly enforced; if the Covid-19 cases continue to rise, the Archdiocese would make adjustments, he said.
Montejo will also summon his personnel for a meeting so they can further enhance their security plan, especially in the towns in Cebu Province since the quarantine protocol has been relaxed.
In Cebu City, the Emergency Operations Center had earlier announced that it would ban church visitors and religious activities in all 80 barangays. (AYB / KAL)