Antipolo Cathedral is PH’s first international shrine

Benise Balaoing, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 26 2022 12:17 AM | Updated as of Jun 26 2022 12:58 PM

The facade of the Antipolo Cathedral ABS-CBN News/File
The facade of the Antipolo Cathedral, taken April 6,2020. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA – The National Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage, also known as the Antipolo Cathedral, is now the first international shrine in the Philippines, Bishop Francisco de Leon said Saturday.

De Leon made this announcement at the Mass celebrating the 39th anniversary of the establishment of the Diocese of Antipolo.

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“Ang ating shrine or dambana is the National Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage. And this national shrine is given the privilege of becoming an international shrine. We received a letter from Rome that saying on June 18, kikilalanin na ang ating national shrine as international shrine. Bagamat hindi pa dumarating ang hard copy,” he said.

This makes the cathedral--which houses the image of a brown skinned Mary—the third international shrine in Asia, the bishop noted.

The other two are the St. Thomas Church Malayattoor in India, and the Haemi Martyrdom Holy Ground and Seoul Pilgrimage Routes in South Korea.

“We are the first Marian international shrine in Asia,” De Leon added.

In 2021, CBCP News, the news website of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines, reported that the Diocese of Antipolo was planning to petition the Vatican to declare the cathedral as an “international shrine”.

“By being a center of the Catholic faith in the region, this would be an honor that will be claimed as a beacon for Filipinos across the world and those inspired by the cause of peace and good voyage attest their fervor in the faith to the love of Christ and to the maternal care of the Blessed Mother,” the diocese had said in Facebook post.