Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish Muntinlupa staff prepare to distribute the grocery packs (photo from the parish’s Facebook page)

Regardless of religious denominations, a Catholic parish in Muntinlupa City has so far provided more than 11,000 food packs to more than 5,000 families as aid while the entire Luzon island is under a total lockdown to control the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

The Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish along Don Jesus Boulevard through its “Puso Para sa Sitio: Covid-19 Fund Drive” has benefited 5,639 families living within its boundaries. The drive was immediately launched by the parish as soon as the entire National Capital Region and the rest of Luzon was placed under total lockdown.

Donations came from various communities of Muntinlupa City namely: Alabang 400, Hillsborough, Kalipayan, Pacific Malayan, Alabang Hills, Intercity, Rizal Village, Mintcor, BF 6-East, Asya, Capri Southbay and various individuals and corporations like Gardenia, San Miguel Corporation and Phinma Properties.

The grocery packs contain three kilos of rice and five canned goods. Some selected sitios (communities) also received eggs, Nutribun from San Miguel Corp. and Gardenia bread.

Fr. Carmelo Estores, parish priest of Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish – Muntinlupa in his homily said the pandemic changed how we live our lives.

“Malaki ang binago ng krisis na ito sa galaw ng mundo at sa galaw ng tao. Sa ngayon mas nauunawaan natin kung gaanong kahalaga ang pananampalataya sa ating buhay. Mas nauunawaan natin kung gaanong kahalaga ang Diyos sa ating buhay. Yung mga dating bihira magdasal, ngayon, nagrorosaryo na araw-araw, nagsisimba online,” he said.

He added that the fund drive is an answer to people asking where the Church is during this times.

“Marami po ngayon ang nagtatanong, “Nasaan ang simbahan?”;”Ano ang galaw ng simbahan?”; “Bakit hindi gumagalaw ang simbahan?” Bago po tayo magtanong ng ganyan, lalo na kung churchworker tayo, tanungin din muna natin ang ating sarili. Eto ba ay salita ng pag-ibig? Eto ba ay salita ng malasakit? Siguraduhin muna natin na ang tanong natin ay patungo sa pagmamahal, na hindi makakasakit sa kapwa, na hindi makakasakit ng simbahan.”

Fr. Estores said it is during trying times that the Church is actively seen among the suffering and the needy because the Church lives the teachings of its Founder, the Risen Jesus Christ.

“Sa mga tanong na ito, simple lang ang sagot ko, hindi lamang para sa ating parokya kung hindi para sa buong simbahan : May galaw ang simbahan. Gumagalaw ang simbahan. May malasakit ang simbahan.”

He added that Jesus challenges everyone to be a miracle of God to others by translating our prayers to acts of charity.

“Our prayer should be translated into acts of charity for others. Our compassion and faith should contaminate others through our concrete acts of charity. At ito yung pinakamagandang pagkakataong maiparamdam natin sa lahat ang ating pagmamahal at malasakit sa ating kapwa. Palutangin natin ang pag-ibig na yan. Palutangin natin ang malasakit sa ating kapwa tao. Baka mayroong mga nahihirapan sa ating palibot, na halos mamatay na, hindi dahil sa Coronavirus, hung hindi dahil sa gutom. Tulungan natin sila.”

The parish said in a statement that they will continue to provide relief packs for as long as the pandemic and the quarantine is affecting the lives of families.

They are still accepting donations to sustain the program.

Any interested parties may contact the parish through their Facebook page ( and telephone number 880-798-47