Benedictine nuns were spotted praying during the opening of their newly-installed community pantry outside the campus of St. Scholastica’s College in Manila.
Photos of the nuns were uploaded on the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines’ news page on Facebook and was also reposted by other local news outlets.
As the community pantry in St. Scholastica’s College gained traction on social media, some Filipinos wished the nuns well.
“Thanks and God bless you Sisters. I join you in your prayers that we all be spared from the snares of the devils,” a Facebook user commented.
“Prayers for your safety & success in helping the needy, Sisters,” another wrote.
Some online users asked them to take care of themselves after some volunteers were red-tagged and profiled for the community pantry initiative.
“Laban sisters, baka ma-red tag din kayo,” a Facebook user said in the comments section.
“Sisters, ingat kayo. Baka ma-red tag kayo,” another online user wrote.
“Ingat mga sister… baka pati kayo ma-red tag din…” a Facebook user commented.
Manila Mayor Isko Moreno on Tuesday encouraged Filipinos to set up community pantries in different areas of the city in response to permit concerns brought up by the Department of Interior and Local Government.
“Maglatag na kayo kahit saang kanto o barangay sa Maynila. We don’t require permit. Good deeds need no permit,” he said.
Interior Undersecretary Martin Diño previously said that community pantry organizers must obtain a permit from local officials but he retracted this statement on the same day.
The community pantry initiative was started by Ana Patricia Non along Maginhawa Street in Quezon City. People who have the means are encouraged to donate goods and food items for those who are in need.
It has inspired other Filipinos to set up their own community pantries in their areas. However, the pioneer Maginhawa community pantry was temporarily closed on Tuesday after Non was reportedly red-tagged or associated with communist rebellion.
Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has already reached out to Non and discussed her security concerns.
She also assured the public that the local government supports their volunteer-led initiatives and that they will remain “safe and unimpeded” in their efforts.
“In these difficult times, let us allow kindness and selflessness to prevail,” Belmonte said in a statement.