Taiwanese Embassy provides aid to quarantined Camillian Sisters

In their convent in Rome, 17 Sisters seem at first positive for the virus. The community, whose members are dedicated to nursing the sick, is now on lockdown. To help them, Taiwan’s embassy brought food, including vegetables, tea, fruit, as well as medicine and surgical masks after the Camillian superior delegate in Taiwan made an appeal. The embassy also provided tuna cans for the homeless and masks for the Vatican Pharmacy.

Rome (AsiaNews) – The Convent of the Daughters of St Camillus in Rome is on lockdown. Seventeen of its 24 members, whose mission is to nurse the sick, are infected with suspected coronavirus. No one can leave, not even to get food supplies. The Taiwanese embassy came to their rescue.

“The other day we received an urgent request from Fr Giuseppe Didone, who is the Camillian superior delegate in Taiwan,” said Begonia Tsai, an official with the Taiwanese embassy to the Holy See. “He urged us to help the nuns who are in quarantine in Rome.”

The embassy bought food, including vegetables, tea, fruit, and, on the same day, Ambassador Matthew Shieh-Ming Lee and a few aides delivered it, along with medicine and surgical masks (pictures 1 and 2).

“Over the past few weeks, Taiwan has been helping Italian missionaries who dedicated their lives to the Taiwanese. Now they and their brothers and sisters are suffering, especially in northern Italy. This is why we Taiwanese want to do something for them.”

At a press conference in Taipei this morning (picture 3), Fr Didone formally thanked the embassy.

After Pope Francis's appeal not to forget the poorest, the homeless and panhandlers, Taiwan’s embassy gave the papal almoner, Card Konrad Krajewski, 600 tuna cans to be distributed to the poor.

The embassy also provided surgical masks to Vatican congregations and priests and seminarians studying in Rome.

Together with the Tzu Chi Buddhist Foundation of Taiwan, embassy it delivered 4,000 masks to the Vatican Pharmacy. "Helping is a moral duty,” Ambassador Lee said.

“We are on the same boat,” said Pope Francis in his homily last Sunday, “all of us [are] called to row together, each of us in need of comforting the other” (picture 4).