MANILA -- The Catholic Bishop's Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) on Wednesday voted to designate the San Pascual Baylón Parish-Diocesan Shrine of Nuestra Señora de la Inmaculada Concepcion de Salambao in Obando town in Bulacan as a national shrine.
The Obando Church now joins 26 other churches designated as national shrines. It is also the fourth national shrine in the Diocese of Malolos.
The Obando Church was founded by the Franciscan missionaries on April 29, 1754.
According to a CBCP article, the missionaries chose St. Paschal Baylon as the titular patron of the parish. The saint is also considered as a dancing devotee to the Blesses Virgin Mary.
Known for its fertility festival, Obando has been a pilgrimage site for barren couples and their families.
The Obando fertility dance is celebrated from May 17-19, with each day honoring St. Paschal Baylon, St. Clare of Assisi and Our Lady of Salambao.
The CBCP has yet to set a date to formally declare the parish as a national shrine.