AFP chief hopes Christmas brings joy, hope amid pandemic

The country’s top military official is optimistic that the Christmas season will bring hope and joy to the lives of Filipinos amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“More importantly, may it awaken further our spirit of nationalism and love for service, as we continue to faithfully fulfill our sworn duty to our country and people,” said Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief, Lt. Gen. Andres Centino, during the simultaneous Christmas tree lighting rites at the Lapu-Lapu Grandstand in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City, and other military camps nationwide Wednesday night.

The Philippine Army, Philippine Air Force, Philippine Navy, and all Unified Commands of the AFP participated in the event by holding their own lighting ceremony in their respective camps.

Centino also thanked God for the good health and safety of everyone, especially the families of AFP personnel, even as he hoped for better and more prosperous days ahead.

He also lauded the Filipinos’ resilience despite the challenges brought by the health crisis.

(Photo courtesy of AFP)

“Despite the challenges brought about by the global health crisis, we remained resilient and triumphant over seemingly insurmountable odds,” Centino said.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) also joined the nation in welcoming the Christmas season.

“With the world shifting to the new normal and as we find an array of advanced methods being integrated into the celebration of this festive year, let us remember that whatever challenges life has brought to our lives, it doesn’t prevent us from making this Christmas a merry and meaningful one by bringing new hope, positivity, and solutions to worries and uncertainties,” PNP chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos said in his message during the Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Camp Crame.

PNP chief, Gen. Dionardo Carlos (Photo courtesy of PNP)

He added that switching of decorative lights this evening is also a time to remember the people for whom it is being lit.

They are the family members who will be away from home, the valiant PNP personnel who succumbed to Covid-19 virus and those who lost their lives while performing their duty, front-liners performing peace-keeping duties and essential health care services on holiday, and the bayanihan spirit of every Filipino during this most difficult time.

(Photo courtesy of PNP)

“Amidst the global effect of Covid-19 pandemic, let us not also forget that this Christmas season is reminding us that life is an ongoing progression and there will always opportunity for new possibilities, new beginnings, and new hope which inspire us to embrace even more fully the joy of spending time with our loved ones,” Carlos added.

Meanwhile, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) chief, Maj. Gen. Vicente Danao Jr. personally led the ceremonial lighting of Christmas Lights, Nativity, and Christmas Tree at the Regional Headquarters, Camp Bagong Diwa, Bicutan, Taguig City Wednesday.

In his message, Danao expressed hope that the pandemic will soon end.

(Photo courtesy of NCRPO)

“Soon enough, everything will be back to normal and we will rise triumphant from this Covid -19 pandemic. Tonight, we just lit the symbol of peace. Sana naman itong simbolong ito ay pumayagpag sa buong National Capital Region, hindi lang sa kapulisan kundi sa buong sambayanang Pilipino (I hope that this symbol will shine across the whole National Capital Region, not just for the police force but for the whole nation),” Danao added.

He also congratulated the men and women of the NCRPO for their accomplishments.

“And hopefully, with this lighting of our starlight you are seeing now it will be a symbol of peace, hope, unity, cooperation, and collaboration,” he said.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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