Father Yustinus Ardianto, 47, posing for the Jakarta Globe at Samadi Pastoral Center in East Jakarta on August 5, 2021. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Catholic Retreat Center Converted into Covid-19 Isolation Ward
BY :YUDHA BASKORO
AUGUST 17, 2021
Jakarta. Considering the increasing Covid-19 positivity and death rate in Jakarta, Father Yustinus Ardianto ventures to take one of the most important decisions in his life. He immediately asks permission from the Archdiocese of Jakarta to convert the Samadi Pastoral Center into an isolation ward for Covid-19 patients without charge regardless social status, ethnicity, and religion.
"Initially it was only opened for internal purposes. But since Covid-19 cases increased dramatically after Eid, I dared to ask the cardinal to open this place for everyone," said the 47-year-old priest.
Together with fraters, nuns and pastoral employees, Father Yustinus works hand in hand to help patients while making major adjustments to the pastoral which was originally used as a retreat for prospective priests. Starting from setting up the secretariat, providing contact persons for patients, turning the second floor into a special isolation room, preparing the kitchen to providing laundry.
Father Yustinus is assisted by Dr. Albertus Adiwenanto, a frater who also works as a doctor. Everyday, Dr. Albertus will walk around the pastoral to examine and treat patients. Currently, the Pastoral receives assistance in forms of fund, food, vitamins and medicines as well as personal protective equipment (PPE) from devotees and donors.
Since opening in May last year, Pastoral Samadi has treated 140 self-isolation patients while 100 of them have been recovered and 40 are still under treatments.