June 17, 2024

The Insider News

Direct from the source

Church, AFP Reservists collab for joint outreach missions

By Crema Limpin

WHEN the people’s welfare is at stake, not even stark differences in religion and ideology would deter clergies and soldiers to collaborate and reach out to the poor.

In what appears to be an unprecedented move, the Philippine Air Force’s 1st Air Force Wing Reserve Command (AFWR) sealed a partnership with Church clergies based from the eastern metropolis to the adjoining towns in Rizal province.

Over the weekend, the 1st AFWR wing commander Brig. Gen. Charito ‘Ching’ Plaza, San Andres Apostol Parish Priest Fr. Rock Berdos, Social Action Ministry head Dr. Wilfredo Mirasol, Parish Pastoral Council local chapter President Bro. Justino Averell Aggabao, 12th AFGR Commander Lt. Col. Donald Lim and Operations Director Lt. Col. Dante Mirambil signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for a collective outreach mission to depressed communities located in Pasig, Cainta, Taytay and adjoining localities.    

In a joint statement, the parish and the air force wing command expressed commitment to conduct dental and medical missions, livelihood, agricultural, and entrepreneurial seminars, relief operations, disaster and emergency response skills training, and other similar activities within the localities. 

“Celebrity reservists, like Onemig Bondoc and Luke Jackain, will handle youth activities such as career development, acting, martial arts, and sports activities. This will divert the youth’s attention to more productive endeavors so that drug use and crime among the youth can be prevented.” Wing Commander Plaza said

Under the agreement, the PAF shall provide manpower composed of reservists as well as supplies while the parish shall provide venues for the activities and its counterpart contingent composed of church leaders and parishioners. 

Plaza said “If we want to help, we should put our heart and hands on it. That’s why we pushed for this extraordinary partnership.”

She added that the agreement also provides that PAF endeavors to train the church leaders and parishioners who are willing and qualified to join their reservist program, which is consistent with each citizen’s constitutional duty to render personal military or civil service. 

Right after the MOA signing, the partners hit the ground running and proceeded to conduct its first Medical and Dental Mission at the parish’s medical center which served more than 70 beneficiaries the whole day. 

The outreach project covers medical consultations, free medicines, and dental services which will be held once a month in the church’s compound to help its parishioners, especially those who lack financial capacity for medical and dental care.