The Philippines: Holy Child of Tacloban Church Turns into Archdiocesan Shrine

Archbishop John Du of Palo of Tacloban emphasized the significance of the ceremony, as the Philippines celebrate the 500th anniversary of the arrival of Christianity.

Philippines – Manila (11/15/2021 15:19, Gaudium Press) Earlier this month, Archbishop John Du of Palo formally elevated the parish Church of the Holy Child in the Philippine city of Tacloban to the status of Archdiocesan Shrine. The temple houses an image believed to have stopped an epidemic in the late 19th century.

In his homily, he emphasized the significance of the ceremony, as the Philipines celebrate the 500th anniversary of the arrival of Christianity in the country. It is a way to express “our special dedication for God having manifested his blessing to each one of us through our devotion to the Holy Child,” – he noted.

Let this Shrine be a refuge whenever we feel lost…

Shrines are usually designated to help promoting a particular devotion. “This Archdiocesan Shrine may help us connect with the Holy Child, symbol of our Faith and healing. May this Shrine be a home of refuge for us when we are lost and when we feel hopeless,” he added.

According to the Shrine directors, the Church will remain open daily to receive devotees who wish to venerate the image of the Holy Child of Tacloban. Every third Sunday of the month will be celebrated as a pilgrim’s day.

History

Founded in 1770 by Augustinian missionaries, the parish houses a century-old image of the baby Jesus. The image is revered and honoured as the patron saint of the Leyte province. The devotion has spread throughout Tacloban and to other areas of the Archdiocese.

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In the year 1889, a cholera epidemic ravaged the inhabitants of Tacloban. However, the epidemic ceased with the arrival of the image to the city’s port on June 30, 1889, after it was lost in a maritime accident. “In a like maner, we trust that the Holy Child of Tacloban will end the present pandemic,” assured Bishop John Du. (EPC)

Compiled by Gustavo Kralj

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