MANILA – Daet Bishop Rex Andrew Alarcon on Saturday urged Filipinos to keep the faith and believe that God would see them through the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
“What we are in right now makes us realize our limitations and these are many. It also shows us that if we are alone, we will not be able to handle it. There are many challenges. We need to help each other and believe because God has given us the capacity to face adversities and even in difficult times, you can make a difference,” he said in an interview over Church-run Radio Veritas.
Alarcon, chairman of the Episcopal Commission on Youth (ECY) of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), said the crisis being faced by the country, as well as the world, has triggered mental health problems, which at times end up in attempts to end one’s life.
Because of the limitations brought about by the pandemic, he said, many people suffer from depression, sadness, and being alone, owing to the absence of interaction with colleagues and friends.
Alarcon noted the importance of looking after one’s mental health by taking care of the body, through the intake of nutritious food, and satisfying the heart, by adopting a positive perspective and disposition in life.
“What we are eating, what we are putting inside our bodies. It should be the same on what we put in our hearts and minds. What do we keep in our mind(s)? Anger, pity, worries. So they should have much more positive thoughts and nurture a healthy disposition, what we also called a healthy realism. While we still have hope and faith, we are also realistic that what situation we are in right now will not change overnight,” Alarcon added.
Since the onset of the community quarantine in March due to the pandemic, the National Center for Mental Health has been receiving 300 to 400 phone calls per month from people experiencing different mental health problems. (PNA)