Suspension of activities means cash shortfall for Church in Singapore

SINGAPORE (UCAN): Archbishop William Goh of Singapore has called for support for the Catholic Church’s charitable work during the coronavirus pandemic as Church fundraising has taken a his with the suspension of public Masses and other services suspended because of the Covis-19 coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic, AsiaNews reported.

“Social service and the humanitarian vocation are part of the Gospel,” the archbishop said in an appeal made during an online Mass.

St. Alphonsus Church (the Novena Church), Singapore. Photo: Cheene Ru/Unsplash
St. Alphonsus Church (the Novena Church), Singapore. Photo: Cheene Ru/Unsplash

Archbishop Goh called on the faithful to help the community and people facing difficulties, especially those affected by the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak such as the unemployed and those suffering from depression or financial problems.

The pandemic has caused a drop in private donations that are crucial to charities in one of the most developed countries in Asia.

The Methodist and Baptist Churches are also in difficulty.

The cash crisis has not only affected Singapore’s Christians. The Hindu Sri Krishnan Temple, which is celebrating 150 years of activity, saw collections fall by 45 per cent between January and March compared with last year. The Taoist Choa Chu Kang Temple has not been able to raise funds since it was closed on March 27.

After Catholic leaders put Masses on hold in February, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul saw donations fall by 90 per cent. In response, it launched an online fundraiser targeting Singapore’s 400,000 Catholics.

Society president, Florence Tan, said the online project raised US$5,000 ($38,700) to fund its charitable work, particularly help for victims of Covid-19’s economic fallout. More than 2,000 families in need have received aid.

“Those who can should help people in difficulty,” said Archbishop Goh, urging those who “have some extra money to be generous and visit the archdiocese’s website to make a donation, each according to their possibilities.”

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