By ZENIT Staff

A Church official appealed for prayers and help Monday for thousands of people displaced by a volcanic eruption near Manila, reported CBCP News on January 13, 2020.

Archbishop Gilbert Garcera of Lipa has asked Catholics to join him in praying for the safety of everyone amidst the Taal volcano eruption on Sunday, the 12th.

The volcano spewed massive ash clouds, forcing the evacuation of thousands of residents.

The archdiocese’s parish churches have opened their doors to evacuees as the volcano continued to increase its volcanic activity.

The Society of the Divine Word (SVD) Seminary and other religious institutions are also accepting evacuees in Tagaytay City.

Ashfall from the explosion also reached Metro Manila and could possibly spread to Central Luzon.

“Aside from prayers, we are appealing for donations in cash or in-kind for the archdiocese’s ongoing relief operations,” Garcera said over Radio Veritas.

At least 15,000 people have fled their homes in Batangas province as of Monday, according to an initial report from the local disaster risk reduction and management office.

Archbishop Garcera said they are currently assisting more than 3,000 evacuees who are in need of food and water.

Thousands more evacuees who sought refuge in dozens of evacuation centers were reported in Batangas and Cavite provinces.

The archbishop said church workers and volunteers are working round the clock to ensure that the evacuees’ basic needs are met.

The Lipa Archdiocesan Social Action Center also said that more people need face masks, medicine, blankets, towels, flashlights, and fuel.

For inquiries and donations to the Lipa archdiocese, please refer to the following contact numbers: (043) 404-8057 or +63 9255595968.

Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila and other bishops also offered prayers amid the volcano eruption.

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