MANILA -- Church officials are aiming to reopen the Manila Cathedral in time for Holy Week next month, a report from CBCP News said.
According to Monsignor Nestor Cerbo, rector of the Manila Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, they want to reopen the cathedral's doors on Palm Sunday, April 13.
But, he added, it's still not definite since the project manager for the repair and restoration project has yet to make an assessment.
"Right now, I can't tell you (anything definite) because the project manager is still assessing and they are asking me for another week so they could tell me if it is possible to open by the Holy Week," Cerbo said.
Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle said last year that they initially planned to reopen the cathedral in December. There was also another plan to reopen it by March 25.
Cerbo, however, said the cathedral still has damaged parts.
"We cannot open it until everything has been fixed already," he said.
The Manila Cathedral was closed to Masses, baptisms, weddings and other services in February 2012 due to concerns over its structural integrity.
The cathedral was originally built in 1581 but has since been destroyed and rebuilt several times due to fire, earthquakes, typhoons and bombings in World War II.
Cerbo said they have already spent P120 million for the renovation work on the 54-year-old structure.
"For the first phase, we really planned on fixing the interior first and then open it. For the outside part, we can still do the repair even while the church is open," he said.