Sunday, May 28, 2017

Virgen Coronada de Filipinas - the Canonically Crowned Marian images in the Philippines

The re-enactment of the Canonical Coronation of Nuestra Señora del Sanstisimo Rosario - La Naval de Manila
 during the Centenary celebration of the said event
"All Generations will call me blessed", these are the prophetic words that Our Lady sang in her Magnificat when she visited her cousin St. Elizabeth. She expressed such words, not for vanity sake, but because she was chosen by the Lord as the Mother of the Son of God, the King of Kings, that she humbly accepted, along with the sufferings she will undertake for our sake. Her lifetime commitment to God, by being the Mother of the Redeemer, the King of Kings, merited her the glorious title as the Queen of Heaven and Earth.

The Canonical Coronation of the
Virgin of La Naval de Manila in 1907. The First ever
in the Philippines and in Asia


The faithful have recognized the queenly dignity of the Blessed Virgin Mary as the Mother of "The King of Kings and Lord of Lords"; the Early Church Fathers, the Doctors of the Church, Popes have given authoritative expression to the truth and the crowning testimony to this common belief is to be found clearly expressed in the wonders of art and in the profound teaching of the liturgy. In their turn, theologians have shown the fitting nature of the title "Queen" as applied to the Mother of God, since she was so closely associated with the redemptive work of her Son and is the Mediatrix of all graces. This led to the devotional practice of Crowning Marian images across the world to honor her Queenship.

The Church for centuries honors the Blessed Virgin Mary in different ways, one of which is granting a Canonical Corontion to a miraculous Marian image (sometimes Images of the Child Jesus and St. Joseph) that are venerated around the world. A Canonical Coronation is an act of the Pope, duly expressed in thru a Papal Bull or a Papal Decree, wherein the Church recognizes the cultus of a Marian Image under a specific title being venerated in a certain locality by crowing the image "in the name and in the authority of the Pope". This act, along with the offering of the Golden Rose, is considered as the highest honor given to miraculous Marian images around the world.

The Practice of Crowning of Images

The earliest custom of crowning images dates back to the Post Tridentine era and during the heat of the Counter Reformation when Fray Girolamo Paolucci di Forli (born 1552 - died 1620) a Capuchin
priest who initiated started the practice of crowning images of the Blessed Virgin Mary after his homilies wherever he went as part of his preaching. The legacy of Fr. Paolucci influenced the Marquis of Piacenza and Count of Borgonovo, Alessandro Sforza Cesarini that in his last will and testament dated on July 3, 1636, requesting a provision in which a large sum of money was to be invested to fund crowns of precious metals for the coronation of the most celebrated Marian images in the world that later adopted by the Vatican Chapter.

The Canonical Coronation of Nuestra Señora de Candelaria de Jaro
performed by Pope John Paul II which makes the only
Canonical Coronation in the Philippines done by the Pope.
The practice and public declaration of coronation became widely popular in the Papal states prior to the 19th century as growing to approximately 300 coronation rites. Prior to 1989, papal bulls concerning the authorization of Canonical Coronations were handwritten on parchment. After 1989, the Congregation for Divine Worship
and the Discipline of the Sacraments began issuing the specific recognition to crown a religious image, spelling out its approved devotional title and authorizing Papal legate.

The requisites for a Canonical Coronation are the image's antiquity, the devotion around it and its intensity lasting through time and the miracles that were duly recorded. The aforementioned documents, along with the petition letters signed by eminent ecclesiastical persons and the devotees are submitted to the significant ecclesiastical authorities (e.g. Bishops, Cardinals etc.) for recommendation and to be submitted to the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments to study the documents, give further recommendations and the approval of the request that will lead to the issuance of the Papal Bull or Decree to grant the Canonical Coronation of a Marian, Christological or Josephine image. The crown that will be used should be fashioned out of precious materials (authentic gold, silver, precious stones, etc) that will symbolize the singular dignity of the Blessed Virgin.

In the Philippines, out of hundreds of Marian images venerated in the country, only forty Marian images that were granted such honor of Canonical Coronation in recognition of the miracles and the devotion that surrounds a particular Marian image. These images who received such recognition were called "Coronadas" and oftentimes, this distinction is added to their titles. The following are the Canonically Crowned Marian images in the country sequenced according to the year of Canonical Coronation.

Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario
- La Naval de Manila
Nuestra Senora del Santisimo Rosario - La Naval de Manila
Provenance:National Shrine of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary - Sto. Domingo Church, Quezon City
Coronation Date; October 5, 1907
Pontificate: Pope St. Pius X

The famed miraculous image of Our Lady of the Rosary was carved sometime in 1593 by a pagan Chinese artisan upon the request of Governor General Luis Perez Dasmariñas, under the direction of a Spanish captain turned priest, Don Hernando delos Rios Coronel. The image was later donated to the Dominicans and enshrined in the Gospel side of the altar.  The Virgin of La Naval gained much popularity due to the miracles that were reported through her intercession. The most famous of her miracles is the victory of the Five Naval Battles of 1646 when the Dutch invaders failed to to conquer Manila due to defense of brave Spanish and Filipino forces with two old ill-equipped Spanish galleons. The Spanish-Filipino forces sought the aid of the Virgin of the Rosary and made a vow to walk in barefoot to her shrine if victory will be theirs. The miraculous victories were accepted and proclaimed by the Catholic hierarchy of Manila and "La Naval" was added to her title to commemorate this victory of the nation. She was Canonically Crowned on October 5, 1907 in Paseo de Magallanes in Intramuros, Manila in the presence of thousands of people who flocked to Intramuros to witness the coronation of the "La Gran Señora de Filipinas". The Coronation was granted by Pope St. Pius X and granted plenary indulgence to those who will venerate the Virgin of La Naval. It is said that the Pontiff himself wrote the Bull of Canonical Coronation. The Coronation of the Virgin of La Naval was the first Canonical Coronation in the Philippines.

Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia de Naga
Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia de Naga
Provenance: Minor Basilica of Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia, Naga, Camarines Sur
Coronation Date; September 20, 1924
Pontificate: Pope Pius XI

The venerated image of Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia de Naga is one of the most well known and beloved image of the whole Bicolandia. The devotion began through the efforts of a Dominican Friar, Padre Caborrobias who is an ardent devotee of the the Virgin of Peña de Francia of Salamanca, Spain. The Image was based from the painting of the Our Lady of Peñafrancia that is venerated in Paco, Manila and the image was carved in 1710. Numerous miracles were attributed to the Ina of the Bicolanos up to the present. Most remarkably of them was the end of a cholera outbreak that killed almost the entire region in 1882. It was this miracle that Pope Leo XIII proclaimed the Virgin of Penafrancia as the Patroness of the Dicoese of Nueva Caceres.  The Ina of Bicolandia received the Canonical Coronation on September 20, 1924 at the plaza of Naga Cathedral.

Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario de Manaoag 
Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario de Manaoag 
Provenance: Minor Basilica of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary, Manaoag, Pangasinan
Coronation Date; April 21, 1926
Pontificate: Pope Pius XI

It is said that the Virgin of Manaoag appeared to a farmer and asked him to build a Church in her honor and the place of the apparition later to be known as "Manaoag" for it is said that the people would refer the place as "The place where the Lady calls". The statue of the Virgin of Manaoag was brought by Fr. Juan de San Jacinto, a Dominican friar, from Mexico. Numerous miracles were reported over the centuries up to the present that she received her Canonical Crown on April 21, 1926 and decades later her shrine became a Minor Basilica on February 17, 2015.

Nuestra Señora de la Paz y Buen Viaje
de Antipolo
Nuestra Señora de la Paz y Buen Viaje de Antipolo
Provenance: Immaculate Conception Cathedral - National Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage, Antipolo, Rizal
Coronation Date; November 28, 1926
Pontificate: Pope Pius XI

This image of the Immaculate Conception was brought by Governor General Juan de Tabora on from Mexico in 1626 and it was first enshrined in Intramuros before it was moved to Rizal Province. The Jesuits were alarmed when the news of the Virgin's wanderings that led them to a Tipolo tree where she rested that it was taken as a sign that she wanted to be venerated in that area.  A Church was immediately built and later be known for her miracles, especially on accompanying several galleons for safety voyages. It was through these miracles that she was given the title "Nuestra
Señora de la Paz y Buen Viaje" (Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage). The Virgin of Antipolo was Canonically Crowned on November 28, 1926 that was held in Luneta Park in Manila led by Archbishop Michael O'Doherty.

Nuestra Señora de la Visitacion de Piat 
Nuestra Señora de la Visitacion de Piat 
Provenance:  Minor Basilica of Our Lady of Our Lady of the Visitation, Piat, Cagayan
Coronation Date; June 20, 1954
Pontificate: Pope Pius XII

The image of Our Lady of Piat was an image of Our Lady of the Rosary made in Goa, India out of paper mache that is intended for the missions in Macao. The image was brought to the Philippines in 1604. It was first placed in the old Santo Domingo Church in Intramuros until she was transferred to her current shrine in Cagayan Valley. The Virgin of Piat earned the title "Visitacion" due to the stories of her "nocturnal visitations" to her devotees over the centuries. Numerous miracles were attributed to her intercession, notably the pacification of warring tribes that led to peace in Cagayan Valley. The Queen of Cagayan Valley was Canonically Crowned at the Plaza of Tugegarao on June 20, 1954, at the conclusion of the Diocesan Marian Congress conducted by the then Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Egidio Vagnozzi.

Nuestra Señora de la Regla de Cebu
Nuestra Señora de la Regla de Cebu
Provenance: National Shrine of Nuestra Señora de la Regla, Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu
Coronation Date; November 27, 1954
Pontificate: Pope Pius XII

The image of Nuestra Senora de la Regla of Cebu was  based from a painting brought by Father Francisco Avalle, an Augustinian priests, in 1735 in a parish in Opon (now Lapu-Lapu City), Cebu. The statue was commissioned years later to preserve the original painting from wear. Numerous miracles of healing were reported through her intercession and also noted for saving Cebu for pestilence that threatened their livelihood and also the ravages of the Second World War. The Virgin of the Rule was Canonically Crowned on November 27, 1954 as a fitting conclusion to the First Archdiocesan Marian Congress that opened days before the Coronation Rites.




Nuestra Señora de Caysasay 
Nuestra Señora de la Inmaculada Concepcion de Caysasay 
Provenance: Shrine of Our Lady of Caysasay, Labac, Taal, Batangas
Coronation Date; December 8, 1954
Pontificate: Pope Pius XII

The image of Nuestra Senora de Caysasay was a foot tall image that was fished out in Pasinipit River by Juan Maningcad in 1603. It was first enshrined in a home altar of a matriarch in Taal but she disappeared for years until she was found on top of a tree near a well surrounded by Casaycasay birds by two women who was doing their menial tasks. A Visita was later built in the site near the well and numerous miracles were reported over the centuries. It is said that the Virgin of Caysasay appeared to two different women on two separate occasions that it is considered as the first reported Marian apparitions in the Philippines. The Queen of Batangas was Canonically Crowned on her feast day, December 8, 1954 officiated by Fernando Cardinal Quiroga, Archbishop of Santiago de Compostela and Papal Legate to the Marian Congress of Manila.

Nuestra Señora de Guia 
Nuestra Señora de Guia 
Provenance: Archdiocesan Shrine of Nuestra Señora de Guia, Ermita, Manila
Coronation Date; December 30, 1955
Pontificate: Pope Pius XII

The image of Nuestra Senora de Guia is the considered as the oldest existing Marian image in the Philippines. The image's origin was unknown yet it was found by a soldier of Miguel Lopez de Legazpi on May 19, 1571 being venerated by the natives as a pagan deity. The image was first enshrined in a Visita in Ermita, Manila until she was enthroned in Manila Cathedral and returned to her original shrine centuries later. She was declared as the Sworn Patroness of Manila by the King of Spain in 1758 and became a witness to tragic yet colorful history of Manila. She won the affection of Manilenos due to the miracles that she wrought to them and she was Canonically Crowned on December 30, 1955 at Plaza Ferguson (now part of Luneta) in Manila.


Nuestra Señora de Caridad de Bantay
Nuestra Señora de Caridad de Bantay
Provenance: St. Augustine Parish - Shrine of Our Lady of Charity, Bantay, Ilocos Sur
Coronation Date; January 12, 1956
Pontificate: Pope Pius XII

The image of Nuestra Senora de Caridad of Bantay, Ilocos Sur is considered as the oldest venerated Marian image of Ilocandia. The image of Apo Caridad was that of Our Lady of Consolation, the Patroness of the Augustinian Order who were assigned in the region for missionary work. The Virgin has showered innumerable favors among her Ilocano children over the centuries, saving them from imminent dangers and helping them in their necessities that she earned the title, Our Lady of Charity. The original Ivory head and hands of Apo Caridad was stolen in 1968 and a faithful replica was donated by the Archdiocesan Museum that can be seen up to the present. Apo Caridad of Bantay was Canonically Crowned on January 12, 1956.



Virgen delos Remedios de
Pampanga
Virgen delos Remedios de Pampanga 
Provenance: Archdiocesan Chancery Chapel, San Fernando, Pampanga
Coronation Date;September 8, 1956
Pontificate: Pope Pius XII

Communism became rampant in Pampanga after the Second World War that threatened the Catholic faith in the province that Bishop Cesar Ma. Guerrero founded the Crusade of Charity and Goodwill in 1952 to help the poor in need and give Catholic instruction to them. He loaned the image of Virgen Delos Remedios from the parish of Baliti, Pampanga that would tour around the province to ignite the devotion to the Blessed Virgin and it was proven to be a success. In 1954, the bishop later commissioned a replica of the Virgin when the original image was returned to her home in Baliti and the new image continued the missionary tour to preserve and ignite the faith in the province. The Indu of Kapampangans was Canonically Crowned on September 8, 1956 and it is being commemorated annually up to the present.



Nuestra Señora de Pronto Socorro de Boac
Nuestra Señora de Pronto Socorro de Boac
Provenance: Shrine of Our Lady of Prompt Succor, Boac, Marinduque
Coronation Date; May 10, 1958
Pontificate: Pope Pius XII

The Virgin of Biglang Awa of Boac, Marinduque is an image of the Immaculate Conception that is acclaimed as the Queen of the Province of Marinduque. The Virgin of Prompt Succor of Boac was known for defending Marinduque from Muslim pirates, who threatened the island province by hoarding their goods and kidnapping their residence that will be sold as slaves. It is also said that the Virgen also appeared to these infidels on two occasions sometime in the 17th and the 18th Century. She is also credited for the miracles related to maritime perils over the centuries and numerous cures, especially on eyesight was also reported. The Virgin of Biglang Awa was Canonically Crowned on May 10, 1958 officiated by Servant of God Bishop Alfredo Ma. Obviar, Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Lucena.


Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario
de Orani
Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario de Orani 
Provenance: Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary, Orani, Bataan
Coronation Date; April 18, 1959
Pontificate: Pope St. John XXIII

The image of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary, venerated in her shrine in Orani, Bataan was believed to be brought by the Dominican missionaries in 1587. Since her enthronement in Orani, Bataan, miracles of different kind were reported through her intercession from protection against rebel tribes, calamities, pestilence etc. that she was later to be known as Virgen Milagrosa. One of the most notable miracles of the Virgin is that during the Mount Pinatubo eruption in the early 1990's, the Virgin was said to come down from her altar and gave comfort and hope to the victims and refugees. In relation to this known miracle, it happened that the people of Orani would see the lower part of the dress of the Virgin is covered with lahar. The Queen of Bataan Peninsula was Canonically Crowned on April 18, 1959 at the plaza of Orani in front of the municipal hall, presided by Archbishop Salvatorre Siino, then Apostolic Nuncio.

Nuestra Señora de Namacpacan
Nuestra Señora de Namacpacan
Provenance: St. Catherine of Alexandria Parish - Shrine of Our Lady of Namacpacan, Luna, La Union
Coronation Date; November 25, 1959
Pontificate: Pope St. John XXIII

The image of the Virgin of Namacpacan was brought to the country in 1871 originally for a seminary in Vigan. However, due to the raging storm, the crew decided to dock Luna in La Union for safety yet the image of the Virgin strangely did not move despite of the several attempts to move it to the ship. This was taken as a sign that the Virgin wanted to stay in Luna that Father Marcelino Ceballos made an arrangement with the Augustinian Friars who came to claim the image and she was triumphantly welcomed to her chosen home in La Union. Numerous miracles were reported through her intercession over the centuries. One of the most notable was when the natives visited the shrine, they relayed that a tall lady came to them and gave food and asked them to be baptized in the church in Luna and the natives identified the image as the lady who came to them that she was later to be known as "The Lady who feeds." The Virgin of Namacpacan was Canonically Crowned on November 24, 1959 and during the Coronation rites, it was relayed by the Papal Nuncio that the Virgin appeared to Pope Pius XII days before his death and asked him to be honored in that area. Church officials did not know where Luna is until the request for her Coronation was submitted to them.

Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Zamboanga
Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Zamboanga 
Provenance: Shrine of Our Lady of the Pillar
Coronation Date; October 12, 1960
Pontificate: Pope  St. John XXIII

The miraculous bas relief image of Nuestra Senora del Pilar in Zamboanga City enjoys much veneration both by Catholics and Muslims in the area. The Fort Pilar was constructed sometime in the 16th century and later rebuilt in 1718. The facade were the Virgin can be seen was built in 1734 and miracles were later associated with the image of the Virgin of the Pillar in Fort's facade. One of the most notable miracles of the Virgin was when she appeared to a soldier on one occasion and she also appeared to Muslim pirates to defend the people of Zamboanga. The Fort was later converted to a Shrine and the Virgin on the facade was Canonically Crowned on October 12, 1960.

La Virgen Divina Pastora
La Virgen Divina Pastora de Gapan 
Provenance: Three Kings Parish - National Shrine of La Divina Pastora, Gapan, Nueva Ecija
Coronation Date; April 26, 1964
Pontificate: Pope Paul VI

The devotion to La Virgen Divina Pastora of Gapan, Nueva Ecija began sometime in the 1700's when Dona Juana Valmonte had a dream of the Virgin asking her to have an image of her to be brought in the country. With the advice of her father, they consulted their friend, a priest from Intramuros, regarding her dream and he relayed the story of the apparition of La Divina Pastora that took place in 1703 in Seville, Spain and its popularity. The Doña took it as a sign that she will have an image of the Divine Shepherdress for the family's farm. The image arrived years later in Intramuros and was transported to Nueva Ecija and the purchase was proven to be providential that the unique image gained the love and veneration of the people for centuries due to the miracles that were attributed to her intercession. The Queen of the Central Plains was Canonically Crowned on April 26, 1964 officiated by Bishop Mariano Gaviola, the first Bishop of the Diocese of Cabanatuan. The bigger church-owned replica was crowned for the ceremony. The original image on the other hand, which was still under the custodianship of the Valmonte family, was given a special place of honor and was also crowned and the image was later donated to the shrine in 1986 when the Three Kings Parish was declared as the National Shrine of La Divina Pastora.

Nuestra Señora de Caridad de Agoo
Nuestra Señora de Caridad de Agoo
Provenance: Minor Basilica of Our Lady of Charity, Agoo, La Union
Coronation Date; May 1, 1971
Pontificate: Pope Paul VI

The origins of Nuestra Senora de Caridad, venerated in her Minor Basilica in Agoo, La Union were unknown   to scant records regarding the image's carving and arrival in La Union. However, it is believed that the devotion to Our Lady of Charity was derived from the devotion to the Virgin of the same title in Bantay, Ilocos Sur. The system of rotation of assignments among early Augustinian missionaries in Ilocos could have brought one missionary in Bantay, who in turn introduced the devotion in Agoo. Números miradles were reported through her intercession over The centuries.that she was Canonically Crowned on May 1, 1971 by Archbishop Carmine Rocco, then Papal Nuncio.


Nuestra Señora de Visitacion de Guibang
Nuestra Señora de Visitacion de Guibang 
Provenance: National Shrine of Our Lady of the Visitation of Guibang, Gamu, Isabela
Coronation Date: May 26, 1973
Pontificate: Pope Paul VI

The devotion to Nuestra Senora de la Visitacion de Guibang began when a poor young man of Gamu, Isabela propagated the devotion to Our Lady of the Rosary as early as 1905 by carrying the image from house to house in the area. One day, it was scheduled to be stay in the Noble household. The Noble couple were reluctant for they can't give any alms for the Virgin due to their poor living conditions, yet they still welcomed the Virgin to their humble home. One night, the couple were amazed with a sweet unusual fragrance that filled the household and it was discovered that the perfume came from the image of the Virgin and the news spread like wildfire in the town that a Chapel was built to accommodate pilgrims. The Image was Canonically Crowned on May 26, 1973 and the chapel became a National Shrine in 1986.


Nuestra Señora de Salvacion de Joroan
Nuestra Señora de Salvacion de Joroan
Provenance: Shrine of Nuestra Señora de Salvacion de Joroan, Joroan, Tiwi, Albay
Coronation Date; August 25, 1976
Pontificate: Pope Paul VI

The image of the Nuestra Senora de Salvacion of Joroan, Tiwi, Albay was carved by Bagacumba from a mysterious kalpe tree trunk that was found in Buhi, Camarines Sur. The sculptor made three images out of the trunk: the statues of San Antonio de Padua for Buhi, Virgen de la Soledad for Tambo and Virgen del Salvacion that was given to Joroan on August 25, 1776. Orignally known as Virgen de la Luz, the Virgin is known for saving the people of Albay from Muslim pirates who threatened to rob and kidnap the residence that the people developed their love and devotion to the Virgin that she was later named "Salvation". Pilgrims from all over Bicolandia and other parts of the country would flock to her shrine to pay homage to her and perform penances and devotion to Our Lady. The Virgen de Salvacion was Canonically Crowned on August 25, 1976 and was proclaimed as the Patroness of the Diocese of Legazpi.

Nuestra Señora de Candelaria de Jaro
Nuestra Señora de Candelaria de Jaro
Provenance: Metropolitan Cathedral of St. Elizabeth - National Shrine of Our Lady of the Candles, Jaro, Iloilo
Coronation Date: February 20, 1981
Pontificate: Pope St. John Paul II

The devotion to Nuestra Senora de Candelaria of Jaro, Iloilo began when two fishermen found a stone image of the Blessed Virgin Mary in 1587. The image was a foot high yet the it was unusually heavy yet it became light when it was decided to be brought to Jaro. With the foundation of St. Elizabeth's Cathedral in Jaro, the image was placed on the rooftop pediment where devotees began the custom of lighting vigil lamps at its foot. It is said that the image grow larger as years passed by and as of this writing, the image was now four feet. Often items, some residence sees the Virgin's pediment empty and a woman with her Child bathing Him in a well nearby the Cathedral. With numerous miracles that the Virgin wrought to her Ilonggo Children, the Virgen de Candelaria was Canonically Crowned personally by Pope St. John Paul II on February 20, 1981 during his first Apostolic Visit to the Philippines and declaring her as the patroness of Western Visayas. It was this singular event that makes her the only Marian statue in the Philippines personally crowned by a Pope and a saint as of this writing.

Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia de Manila
Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia de Manila
Provenance: Parish of Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia de Manila, P. Gomez St., Paco, Manila
Coronation Date: November 10, 1985
Pontificate: Pope St. John Paul II

The image of Nuestra Senora de Penafrancia de Manila is believed to arrived in the country when the ship of the Caborrobias family sank that the rolled painting of the image was washed away by waves until it got into a riverlet or sapa. Some old folks found it on May 14, 1651. It was rolled up and tucked among the branches of Bakawan trees along the small river. It was raining hard at that time, but the painting wasn’t ruined. The people made a canopy made of pawid near the river and had it framed and decorated with several candles and flowers. The image was first taken to San Fernando de Dilao Parish where an altar was built for her. It disappeared more than three times so the residents of the Dela Peña decided to keep her in the exact place where it was found. Since then many miracles were reported over the centuries and it became the basis of the image of Nuestra Senora de Penafrancia of Naga. The Mother of the Poor was Canonically Crowned on November 10, 1985 at the Qurino Grandstand in Rizal Park, Manila. A festive dancing took place afterwards that would later evolve to the traditional dance called "Tatarin" in thanksgiving for the coronation of their patroness.


La Inmacaulada Concepcion de Malabon
La Inmacaulada Concepcion de Malabon 
Provenance: Immaculate Conception Parish, Concepcion, Malabon City
Coronation Date: December 7, 1986
Pontificate: Pope St. John Paul II

The image of La Inmaculada Concepcion of Malabon was one of the most unique and beautiful image of the Immaculate Conception in the Philippines. The image as said to have carved in Pampanga and it was later brought it a Visita in Hacienda Tambobong (Now Malabon). However, the image and the shrine was sequestered by the Aglipayan Church during the Philippine Revolution yet was later returned to the Catholic Church in 1906 and the Aglipayans later commissioned their own image and shrine. With numerous miracles attributed to her intercession, Ynang, as what she is called by her devotees, was Canonically Crowned on December 7, 1986.


Nuestra Señora de los Desamparados de Manila
Nuestra Señora de los Desamparados de Manila
Provenance: Shrine and Parish of Our Lady of the Abandoned, Sta. Ana, Manila
Coronation Date; May 12, 1991
Pontificate: Pope St. John Paul II

The devotion to Nuestra Senora Delos Desamparados of Santa Ana, Manila began with the arrival of her image, an authentic replica of the Virgin of the Abandoned of Valencia, Spain via Manila-Acapulco Galleon Trade in 1717 together with a replica of Santo Cristo de Burgos of Sariyaya, Quezon. She was called "La Gobernadora de Manila" since Archbishop dela Cuesta gave his Baston de Manto to the Virgin as an act of thanksgiving of his appointment as Interim Governor-General of the country. Many miracles, especially of healing and answered prayers inundated the parish records that she received Canonical Coronation on her feast day, May 12, 1991.


Nuestra Señora del Carmen de Manila
Nuestra Señora del Carmen de Manila
Provenance: Minor Basilica of San Sebastian, Plaza del Carmen, Quiapo, Manila
Coronation Date; August 18, 1991
Pontificate: Pope St. John Paul II

The Image of Nuestra Senora del Carmen of San Sebastián Minor Basilica of Quiapo, Manila was the first image of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in the Philippines. The venerable image brought to the Philippines in 1618, by Spanish Recoletos, on their 3rd mission to the country, led by Fray Rodrigo de San Miguel. The sacred statue was a gift presented by the Discalced Carmelite Sisters of Mexico while their ship was anchored there, en route to Manila. The crew elected the Virgen del Carmen the ‘capitana’ of their ship in their voyage to the Pacific. Prior to the arrival of the Carmelites in the country, it was the Augustinian Recollects who first propagated the devotion to the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and miracles were proven to be numerous over the years that with the permission of the Carmelite Order, a Confraternity was formed to propagate the devotion to the Virgin of Carmel and the Brown Scapular. One particular event that is ingrained to the modern popular consciousness was during the Traslacion Fiesta of Nuestro Padre Jesus Nazareno of Quiapo every January 9. The image of the Virgin comes out of the balcony of the Basilica to meet the Black Nazarene for the traditional "Dungaw",  the meeting of the King and Queen of Quiapo, Manila. The Queen of Quiapo was Canonically Crowned on August 18, 1991.

Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario de Ubanon
Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario de Ubanon
Provenance: Parish and Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary, Ubanon, Catbalogan, Samar
Coronation Date: October 15,  1995
Pontificate: Pope St. John Paul II

The origins of the unique image of Nuestra Senora del Santisimo Rosario de Ubanon was unknown due to scant records on her carving and arrival, yet it was popularly believed that the image was carved by a Chinese sculptor from hamorawon wood. One of the oldest historical record of the image is that of a Jesuit Historian, Father Francisco Alcina SJ in his book "Historia de la Islas e Indios de Bisayas" published in 1668. Padre Alcina recounts that in 1627, a certain captain named Capitan Juan de Leon, the corregidor of Catbalogan wanted to pursue the Camucon pirates who has been raiding and marauding the coasts of Samar Island. Before leaving for this mission, he implored the Virgin of her protection to the captain and protection of the island, he vowed to the Blessed Virgin that "All the booty that he would take from the enemies so that it may be used in fashioning a crown for her and for the Child Jesus". Rosaries were being prayed by the island folks for the success of the mission. He encountered the pirates and engaged in a battle for the protection of the islands. The Valiant captain became victorious, he captured the vessels with all they carried, held a few captives and returned to her shrine to fulfill his vow to the Lady. The Virgin was Canonically Crowned on October 15, 1995. The crowns were blessed by St. John Paul II during his Second Papal Visit for the World Youth Day in Manila.

Nuestra Señora de la Consolacion y Correa de Manila
Nuestra Señora de la Consolacion y Correa de Manila
Provenance: Immaculate Conception Parish - Shrine of Our Lady of Consolation (San Agustin Church), Intramuros, Manila
Coronation Date; September 4, 2000
Pontificate: Pope St. John Paul II

The exact date of the arrival of the image of Nuestra Senora de la Consolacion y Correa of Intramuros is unknown yet it is believed that the Consolacion was already enshrined in San Agustin Church in her own altar since the Seventeenth century. The devotion to the Virgen de la Consolacion began when the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to St. Monica of Tagaste, Mother of the future St. Augustine of Hippo in mourning clothes and gave her cincture and asked Monica to wear it as a sign of her maternal consolation and protection and promised the conversion of her son which he did and became one of the greatest known Church Fathers in Church history. A Cofradia was later founded in the country under her patronage for the propagation of the devotion to the Lady of Consolation and for promoting the spiritual life of St. Augustine. The image was kept hidden during the Second World War and it was later enshrined to her altar once again years after the War and stayed there since then. The original Niño of the Consolacion was sacrilegiously stolen on February 13, 2005 and a replacement image was soon refurbished from one of their collections in San Agustin Museum. The Mother of the Augustinian Order was Canonically Crowned on her feast day, September 4, 2000 - then the Jubilee Year.

Nuestra Señora del Buen Suceso de Parañaque
Nuestra Señora del Buen Suceso de Parañaque
Provenance: Cathedral of St. Andrew - Diocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Good Events, La Huerta, Parañaque City
Coronation Date; September 8, 2000
Pontificate: Pope St. John Paul II

The ancient image of Nuestra Senora del Buen Suceso of Paranaque was brought by the Augustinians from Spain in 1580 as a gift from the King to Filipino converts. The image was enjoyed much veneration at that time until a bigger replica was commissioned and the original image was later kept in the storage room for some time. Years later, an Indio caretaker named Catig, a poor native from Don Galo saw the image untouched and covered with dust and asked the sacristan if he could take the statue home and once it was given to him, he took care of the image for years. Catig later gave the image to Rev. Fr. Juan de Guevarra of the Order of St. Augustine before his death and a few moments later, Padre de Guevarra saw the image emit a mysterious light and heard glorious angelic hymns, leading him to conclude the image as being miraculous. Miracles were reported through the help of Our Lady of Good Events over the centuries that the Queen of Paranaque was Canonically Crowned on September 8, 2000.

Nuestra Señora de los Desamparados de Marikina
Nuestra Señora de los Desamparados de Marikina
Provenance: Diocesan Shrine of Our Lady of the Abandoned, Marikina City
Coronation Date: October 23, 2005
Pontificate: Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

There were scant records about the actual origin of the image yet it is believed that the present image that was carved sometime in 1902 to replace the older image which was destroyed, along with important documents regarding the devotion, during the Philippine-American War in 1898. Despite being the patron of the forsaken, her love and affection goes beyond as what her sobriquet suggests. She is also the protector of the poor, condemned, and the people of Marikina that she captured the hearts of many for years. The Queen and Patroness of Marikina was Canonically Crowned on October 23, 2005 in her shrine in Marikina City. The Canonical Coronation was the first in the Pontificate of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI for he approved the requests a few days after his election to the Papacy.


Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de Cebu
Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de Cebu
Provenance: Archdiocesan Shrine of Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de Cebu, San Nicolas, Cebu
Coronation Date: July 16, 2006
Pontificate: Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

The image of the Virgen de Guadalupe, venerated in her Archdiocesan Shrine in Cebu was said it was found in 1880 by Ricardo Ramirez and the image emanated a great light from a cave in Cebu. It was first enshrined in a hermitage until it was destroyed Philippine-American War, the hermitage was burnt down and later transferred to the Church of San Nicolas, Cebu. Numerous miracles were attributed to the Cebu's Lady of Guadalupe over the centuries. One of the most notable miracles of the Virgin occurred in 1902 when a cholera epidemic took the lives of many Cebuanos that they invoked the intercession of the Virgin of Guadalupe which she in turn did not turn a deaf ear and the epidemic stopped. A thanksgiving novena was held from July 8 - 16 that same year and the people celebrated July 16 as the second fiesta of the Virgin of Guadalupe of Cebu as an act of perpetual thanksgiving to her intercession to stop the epidemic. The Virgin was Canonically Crowned on July 16, 2006, the 104th anniversary of the miracle. The Coronation of the Virgin also symbolized the official recognition of Our Lady of Guadalupe of Cebu as the Patroness of Cebu, was by virtue of a pontifical decree issued on May 3, 2006 by the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

La Inmaculada Concepcion de Pasig
La Inmaculada Concepcion de Pasig
Provenance: Cathedral of the Immaculate Concepcion, Pasig City
Coronation Date: December 7, 2008
Pontificate: Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

The image of La Inmaculada Concepcion de Pasig was carved sometime between 1902 - 1903 as a replacement for the original image that was destroyed during the Philippine Revolution. The image might have been patterned to a painting of the Immaculate Conception that was commissioned by St. Pius X for the Golden Jubilee of the Dogmatic definition of the Immaculate Conception at the same time period. Numerous miracles were recorded over the years. One of the most known miracle was when the Virgin was being restored for her Canonical Coronation, it is said that there were a choir of angels singing while she is restored and it was only the restorers who were at the room at that time and it is impossible that there were choirs in the area. The Queen and Patroness of Pasig was Canonically Crowned on December 7, 2008 officiated by Archbishop Edward Joseph Adams, then Apostolic Nuncio. The Crown was blessed by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI when the representatives of the Diocese of Pasig attended a Papal Audience in Rome months before the Coronation rites.

La Inmaculada Concepcion de Malolos
La Inmaculada Concepcion de Malolos
Provenance: Minor Basilica and Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Malolos, Bulacan
Coronation Date: March 10, 2012
Pontificate: Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

The venerable image of La Inmaculada Concepcion de Malolos was carved by Doding Ople, a native of Barrio San Vicente, sometime before the Second World War and was enthroned in the main altar of Malolos Cathedral. The sculptor was inspired by the famous painting of Estaban Murillo's painting of the Immaculate Conception.

Miracles were reported through her intercession that on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee of the Diocese of Malolos, Bishop Jose Oliveros petitioned for her Canonical Coronation and it was granted on May 11, 2011 and the Coronation Rites took place on March 10, 2012 officiated by Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto, the Papal Nuncio to the Philippines.




Nuestra Señora de Candelaria de Paracale
Nuestra Señora de Candelaria de Paracale
Provenance: Shrine of Our Lady of the Candles, Paracale, Camarines Norte
Coronation Date: September 1, 2012
Pontificate: Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

The image of Nuestra Senora de Candelaria de Paracale of Camarines Norte is considered as the oldest Patroness of Bicolandia with the arrival of the Franciscans in the 17th Century when they brought with them the Ivory image of Our Lady of the Candles. One unique feature of Inay Candi was her broken finger because she protected Camarines Norte from Muslim pirates who wanted to kidnap the residents and loot their goods. The Virgin appeared to the infidels with a sword in her hand and the enemies fled immediately out of fear. Many attempts were made to repair the damage but to no avail for the Virgin wanted to remain in that state as a reminder of her protection to the province. The Queen of Camarines Norte was Canonically Crowned on September 1, 2012.


Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Imus
Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Imus
Provenance: Cathedral of Our Lady of the Pillar, Imus, Cavite
Coronation Date: December 3, 2012
Pontificate: Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

The image of Nuestra Senora del Pilar of Imus was brought by Blessed Martin de San Nicolas, OAR from Spain, who was later martyred for his missionary work in Japan years later, in 1624. The image was first enshrined in the old San Nicolas Church in Intramuros before it was transferred to her present site in 1694. Since then, numerous accounts of miracles were reported through the intercession of Nana Pilar and it is noteworthy that St. Ezekiel Moreno was one of the ardent devotees of the Virgin of the Pillar in Imus, Cavite during his stint in Imus..

With the creation of the Diocese of Imus in 1961, the Shrine of the Virgin of the Pillar became the seat of the Diocese and she was Proclaimed as the Patroness of the said Diocese. Nana Pilar was Canonically Crowned on December 3, 2012 officiated by His Eminence Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, then Bishop of the Diocese of Imus.

Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Libmanan
Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Libmanan 
Provenance: Parish and Shrine of Our Lady of the Pillar, San Isidro, Libmanan, Camarines Sur
Coronation Date: October 11, 2015
Pontificate: Pope Francis

The image of Nuestra Señora del Pilar of Libmanan, Camarines Sur depicts the Virgin standing in a pillar with the Child Jesus in her arms. The devotion to Our Lady of the Pillar began when she appeared to St. James the Apostle standing in a jasper pillar. The Virgin promised to convert the Spanish once a shrine will be built in the apparition spot and she left the pillar as a memorial of that visit.

The devotion to Nuestra Senora del Pilar of San Isidro, Libamanan, Camarines Sur began when Archbishop Leandro Legazpi established a Shrine dedicated to the Virgin of the Pillar in 1985 as a complementary devotion to St. James the Apostle which became popular in the area. Devotees and pilgrims flocked the Shrine and miracles were reported and duly recorded over the years. The Virgin was Canonically Crowned on October 11, 2016.


Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu de San Mateo
Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu de San Mateo
Provenance: Diocesan Shrine - Parish of Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu, San Mateo, Rizal
Coronation Date: May 31, 2017
Pontificate: Pope Francis

The unique image of Nuestra Senora de Aranzazu arrived in the Philippines in 1705, through a Jesuit priest, Father Juan de Echazabal, SJ. The arrival of the image marked the beginning of the devotion to the Virgin on the Thorn tree that led to the changing of the patron of the town from St. Matthew the Apostle and Evangelist to Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu. The image is believed to have ensured the safe journey of the ship and its passengers despite being caught in the midst of a raging storm. The Virgin of Aranzazu was known to be the advocate against natural calamities, especially on typhoons for whenever there were typhoons or storms, the Virgin was brought out from her shrine and visits the entire San Mateo area and the flood waters suddenly subsided wherever she passes. The Queen of San Mateo, Rizal was Canonically Crowned on May 31, 2017 in the presence of thousands of her devotees from San Mateo and other parts of the country.


Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Manila 
Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Manila 
Provenance: Parish of Our Lady of the Pillar, Santa Cruz, Manila
Coronation Date: December 7, 2017
Pontificate: Pope Francis

The image of Nuestra Senora del Pilar was brought to the Philippines by the Jesuits sometime before 1743. During that time, a confraternity dedicated to the Virgin of the Pillar already existed in the district, thus the arrival of image made the devotion official. As a patroness of the Sta. Cruz district, she was the object of prayers, mid-day Saturday Masses, Rosary prayers and novenas and many miracles were reported through her intercession for centuries. The opulence of the people of then one of the most aristocratic arrabal of Manila is strongly evident on the appearance of the Virgin. The devotees lavished the Virgin with such gifts as an act of thanksgiving to all the miracles that she wrought to the people and for the thriving of trade and commerce of that district that was once called "The Cradle of Tagalog Aristocracy". The Virgen del Pilar celebrates two Feast days, the Liturgical Feast of October 12 and the Traditional Patronal Feast that is celebrated every Third Sunday of October. The image of La Pilarica of Manila was Canonically Crowned on December 7, 2017.

La Virgen Milagrosa de Badoc
La Virgen Milagrosa de Badoc
Provenance: St. John the Baptist Parish, Badoc, Ilocos Norte
Coronation Date; May 31, 2018
Pontificate: Pope Francis

The devotion to La Virgen Milagrosa of Badoc, Ilocos Norte began in 1620 when the people saw a large wooden box floating on the water which the current was pushing towards the shore. The immediately threw a daclis (fishnet) to catch the box and once caught, it was hauled to the shore. Upon open the box, they found the images of Sto. Cristo Milagroso , that was later given to Sinait, and La Virgen Milagrosa which was later given to Badoc, are perfectly dry.

It is believed that the images are meant for the Japanese missions that were shipwrecked and arrived in Ilocos Norte by Divine Intervention. Immediately, miracles occurred upon the enthronement of the Virgen Milagrosa, which is also regarded as the Cause of their Joy. The Virgin of Badoc was Canonically Crowned on May 31, 2018.


Maria, Auxiliadora de los Cristianos de Pangasinan
Maria Auxiliadora de Los Cristianos de Pangasinan
Provenance: Mary, Help of Christians Minor Seminary, San Fabian, Pangasinan
Coronation Date: August 22, 2018
Pontificate: Pope Francis

The Mary, Help of Christians Minor Seminary in San Fabian, Pangasinan was established in 1929. The image of Maria Auxiliadora was given by then Papal Nuncio to the Philippines, Archbishop William Piani, a known devotee and propagator of the devotion to Mary, Help of Christians, to then Bishop Cesar Ma. Guerrero, then Bishop of the Diocese of Lingayen-Dagupan (which was later elevated to an Archdiocese) as a gift to the seminary. Since the enthronement of the image of Maria Auxiliadora, she helped nurture the seminarians to heed the call for priesthood and helped them persevere to this calling.

By the strength of the Papal Decree issued by the Congregation of Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments on March 23, 2018, this image of Mary, Help of Christians received the honor of Canonical Coronation. The Coronation Rites took place on August 22, 2018 at St. John the Evangelist Cathedral in Dagupan, Pangasinan.



Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Morong
Provenance: Our Lady of the Pillar Parish, Morong, Bataan
Coronation Date: October 10, 2018
Pontificate: Pope Francis

The devotion to Nuestra Señora del Pilar in Morong, Bataan began with the establishment of the parish in 1607. It is said that the devotion to Our Lady of the Pillar in Morong, Bataan began when two captured Moro pirates relayed to the people, the civil and religious authorities of Morong that as they are about to attack Morong, they saw a an army of soldiers in the area headed by a beautiful lady, dressed in queenly robes protecting the area.

While the Church was on construction, a Spanish priest showed to the two Moro captives different images of Our Lady and the Saints to identify the woman they saw in the vision. When the image of Nuestra Señora del Pilar was shown to them, they quickly identified that this was the lady that they saw in the vision. Since then, the church in the seaside of Morong was dedicated to the Virgin of the Pillar to commemorate this unusual event and the devotion to the Virgin of the Pillar grew and strengthen over the centuries. The image received the honor of Episcopal Coronation on October 12, 2018 and on the strength of the Papal Decree issued by the Congregation of Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments on March 23, 2018, this image of Our Lady of the Pillar of Morong, Bataan will receive the honor of Canonical Coronation. The Coronation Rites is set on October 10, 2018`

Nuestra Señora de la Luz de Cainta 
Nuestra Señora de la Luz de Cainta 
Provenance: Our Lady of Light Parish, Cainta, Rizal
Coronation Date: December 1, 2018
Pontificate: Pope Francis

The devotion to Our Lady of Light was introduced in Cainta, Rizal in 1727. The original picture brought by the Jesuits had a gilded frame and crest and enshrined in one of the side altars. Numerous miracles were reported through her intercession over the centuries. However, during the Philippine Revolution, the image was destroyed.

The present image of the Virgin was painted using oil on canvass by the renowned National Artist Fernando Amorsolo. Her feast day is on December 1, after the feast of St. Andrew. Her secondary feast is observed on Thursday after Pentecost Sunday. The image will be bestowed the honor of Canonical Coronation on December 1, 2018, her feast day.



Nuestra Señora de la Soledad de Porta Vaga 
Nuestra Señora de la Soledad de Porta Vaga 
Provenance: San Roque Parish - Diocesan Shrine of Nuestra Señora de la Soledad de Porta Vaga, Cavite City, Cavite
Coronation Date:
Pontificate: Pope Francis

The devotion to the Virgin of Solitude in Cavite began thru an apparition of the Virgin to a soldier who was guarding Porta Vaga at that time and a canvass painting of the Virgin was the found in Canacao Bay the following day. A chapel was immediately built in her honor and devotees from all parts of Cavite flock her chapel and miracles were reported through her intercession. She is credited from saving Cavite from a cholera epidemic and other calamities that she was later called as the Queen of Cavite in thanksgiving. She was also conferred the title "Luz de Filipinas" (Guiding Light of the Philippines) because sometimes, a mysterious light would come from her chapel, oftentimes, she would appear to the sky bathed with great light, that would guide seafarers to their voyage, since lighthouses were not yet established at that time. The image was later moved to her current shrine, the parish of San Roque in Cavite City, for her chapel was completely destroyed during the Second World War. The image received a ceremonial coronation in 1979 and the on the Strength of the Papal Decree issued by the Congregation of Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments on March 23, 2018. the Image will receive her much awaited Canonical Coronation which coinciding with the 350th anniversary of the arrival of the icon in Canacao Bay in Cavite City, Cavite. The Coronation Rites is yet to be announced as of this writing.

Aside from the mentioned Marian images in the country, we also have a special image in the country that was also granted a Canonical Coronation, the famous Santo Niño de Cebu, the first Religious icon in the country. The image of the Santo Niño de Cebu was one of the four images of the Child Jesus to receive such honor together with Santo Bambino di Aracoeli of Rome and Infant of Arenzano, both in Italy, and the world famous Infant of Prague of Czech Republic.

Santo Niño de Cebu
wearing his Canonical Crown
Santo Niño de Cebu 
Provenance: Minor Basilica of Santo Niño de Cebu, Cebu
Coronation date: April 28, 1965
Pontificate: Pope Paul VI

The first religious image in the Philippines was brought by Ferdinand Magellan was given to Humamay, who was later baptized as Reina Juana as a gift along with the images of the Ecce Homo and Virgen Delos Remedios. It is reported that Reina Juana was in tears upon receiving the image. Magellan died on 27 April 1521 in the Battle of Mactan. Legends say that after initial efforts by the natives to destroy it, the image was venerated as one of their pagan deities. 44 years later, the Spaniards returned headed by Miguel López de Legazpi to conquer the islands and on April 28, 1565, Juan Camus, one of Legazpi's soldiers, found the image of the Holy Child in a pina box located in one of the huts in the area and a solemn procession took place and the site of the hut is now the location of the Minor Basilica of Santo Nino de Cebu. Many historians consider the facial structure of the statue made from Flanders, Belgium, where Infant Jesus of Prague statues were also common. Miracles were reported through the Holy Child of Cebu that the devotion was so popular that the devotion was carried over to Manila and other parts of the Philippines. The image was Canonically Crowned on April 28, 1965 on the occasion of the 400th Anniversary of the Kaplag (Rediscovery of the image) and the Quadricentennial of the Christianization in the Philippines on the strength of the Papal Bull "Cunabula Religionis".

We all know that the Blessed Virgin Mary was already crowned by the Most Holy Trinity as the Queen of Heaven and Earth, yet we crown her on earth because we recognize her reign as Queen and Christ as King. Some might dismiss this practice of crowning her images as a "way to show off" or any other things, but if we are looking closely to the origins of this pious act of the Church, it is in fact an act of honoring God, through crowning His loving Son and its Mother, all the the best and the most precious in the world for He deserved the our best and the highest honors our humanity can give. It is also an interesting fact that this act also shows a penitential side for while we give the best, we also in a way shun the vanities of the world and we boldly proclaim the Supremacy of Our Lord and Our Lady in these trying times in our modern life. Whenever we see the Blessed Virgin being crowned, it is a reminder for all of us how might our God is and we will share that crowning glory in eternal life.

Pope Pius XII in his encyclical appropriately titled Ad Caeli Reginam (to the Queen of Heaven), just four years after he defined the Dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin into heaven in 1954, he wrote this passage that would also help us to reflect on the reign of Mary as Queen:

“From the earliest ages of the Catholic Church a Christian people, whether in time of triumph or more especially in time of crisis, has addressed prayers of petition and hymns of praise and veneration to the Queen of Heaven. And never has that hope wavered which they placed in the Mother of the Divine King, Jesus Christ; nor has that faith ever failed by which we are taught that Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, reigns with a mother's solicitude over the entire world, just as she is crowned in heavenly blessedness with the glory of a Queen.”

Hail Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, Hail, our life, our sweetness and our hope!

References:

Aviado, Lutgarda, (1972), Madonnas of the Philippines, Manlapaz Press, Quezon City.
Barcelona, Mary Anne.(2004) Ynang Maria: a celebration of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the    Philippines. Ed. Consuelo B. Estampa, P.D. Pasig City, Anvil Publishing Inc.
De Leon, Joel Alexander, (2009), Lambong: Alay sa Mahal na Birhen ng Orani, Bahay Limbagan ni  Santa Veronica, Quezon City.
Delos Reyes, Michael P. (2015) Salve Regina: On Crowning image of the Virgin Mary, Diliman,  Quezon  City, Claret Communications Foundation Inc.
Sanchez, Francisco (1904). La Virgen Maria Venerada en sus Imagenes Filipinas, Manila: Imp. De Santos y  Bernal.
Three Kings Parish. Nobena sa Birheng Divina Pastora
Paz, Lawrence, (2010), Pagsisiyam sa Mahal na Birhen ng Bayang San Mateo Nuestra Senora de  Aranzazu, Diocesan Shrine and Parish of Nuestra Senora de Aranzazu, San Mateo, Rizal.
Mahal na Birhen ng Aranzazu, Pintakasi ng Bayang San Mateo, Rizal [Pamphlet], Diocesan Shrine  and Parish of Nuestra Senora de Aranzazu, San Mateo, Rizal.
Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de Cebu, Retrieved from  http://en.wikipilipinas.org/index.php/Nuestra_Se%C3%B1ora_de_Guadalupe_de_Cebu.
Valmonte, Ramon. (2014) Ave Maria, La Divina Pastora: commemorating the 50th Anniversary of  the Canonical Coronation and the 28th Anniversary of the Declaration of the National Shrine.  Gapan: Three Kings Parish.
Valmonte, Ramon. (2014) La Virgen Divina Pastora: Canonical Coronation Golden Jubilee, 28th  Anniversary of the Declaration of Her National Shrine, Three Kings Parish, National Shrine of La  Divina Pastora.

Some photographs that were used in this blogpost are credited to its owners and photographers. 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Mary, Help of Christians of Parañaque - Parañaque's Attentive Lady

Mary, Help of Christians of Parañaque City
Photo by Wilfred Naval
In the modern subdivision of Betterliving located in Parañaque City where modernization of living is evident in the area, there is a place in that area that is flocked by pilgrims for years for it was in this location where the National Shrine of Mary, Help of Christians is located.

The image of Mary, Help of Christians probably is one of the most widely recognized image of the Blessed Virgin in the world which shows her attentiveness to her devotees and and at the same time, demonstrating her power against the enemies of God.

The Image

The image of Mary, Help of Christians is based from the description of St. John Bosco when he commissioned the original painting:

"Our Lady stands out in the center, bathed in light and majesty. She is surrounded by ranks of Angels, who are doing Her honor as their Queen. On Her right hand, She holds a scepter, the symbol of Her power, and on Her left arm, She carries the Child with arms outstretched as a sign of the graces and mercy He offers to all who have recourse to His royal Mother. "


The original painting of Mary,
Help of Christians
The Origin of Devotion

The origin of the devotion to Mary, Help of Christians began in the early years of the church and it reached its peak during the Naval Battle of Lepanto when the Christian fleet were victorious against the Turkish Muslim fleet that threatened the entire Christendom. Pope Pius V, in gratitude, instituted the  Feast of the Most Holy Rosary on October 7, 1571 and added the invocation "Help of Christians" in the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

In 1809, Rosary petitions once again went up for Mary’s help. Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte had responded to his excommunication by abducting Pope Pius VII with the intention of pressuring him to sign a treaty that would give the Emperor powers over the Church and state in France and all conquered territories.

While Christians everywhere prayed to Mary for the frail, exiled pontiff at Fontainbleau, Napoleon encountered the winters of Moscow and met his defeat in Waterloo that he was forced to sign his abdication from power. On May 24, 1814, Pope Pius VII returned home from his five year exile in Rome. A year later in 1815, Pope Pius VII consecrated that day perpetually to Mary and instituted the Feast of Our Lady under the title "Mary, Help of Christians", to commemorate the unhoped for help of Mary, most holy toward the Pope and the Christian people.

St. John Bosco teaching his students about the
devotion to Mary, Help of Christians
The Apparition to St. John Bosco

St. John Bosco, the founder of the Salesian Order, became the instrument of worldwide propagation of the devotion to Our Lady as Help of Christians. In 1863, Our Lady appeared to Don Bosco asking him to build a Church to honor Her as Mary Help of Christians with these words: “This is my house, from here My Glory shall shine forth.”

Don Bosco, as he is popularly called, started working against all odds – with lack of funds and the presence of strong anti-clerical act by civil officials during that time. With strong devotion to Mary Help of Christians and Jesus Christ, he built the church under miraculous circumstances with financial help coming from practically unknown devotees. In 1865, Don Bosco asked the artist Thomas Lorenzone to paint the picture of Mary Help of Christians. After three years of work, the painting was finished and put in its place over the main altar of the Basilica. In 1868, Don Bosco completed the Basilica of Mary Help of Christians in Turin, Italy and it has become the center of devotions and Mother Church of over 150 shrines dedicated to Mary Help of Christians around the world including the Philippines.

The original image of Mary, Help of
Christians of Parañaque
The Arrival of the devotion in the Philippines

The devotion to Mary, Help of Christians began in the Philippines with the appointment of Salesian Archbishop William Piani as Apostolic Delegate to the Philippines. In 1922, he brought the statue of Mary Help of Christians to Manila and was first enthroned at the Manila Cathedral.

In 1942, during the Japanese occupation, the statue was brought to the Shrine of Nuestra Señora de Loreto in Sampaloc, Manila for safekeeping. During those years, the Archconfraternity of Mary help of Christians in the Philippines was organized. They continuously offered novenas and masses every 24th day of each month to Our Lady. Perhaps due to Archbishop Piani’s influence, the following parishes adopted Mary Help of Christians as titular and Patroness in different places in the country.

In 1951, the first batch of Salesians of Don Bosco arrived in the Philippines and they were surprised to learn of the existence of devotion to MHC as shown in churches dedicated under this title. Then in 1955, the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians or the Salesian Sisters, arrived in the Philippines and helped spread the devotion to MHC. The first shrine in the Philippines dedicated to MHC was solemnly blessed and inaugurated in 1969 by Archbishop Carmine Rocco, Apostolic Delegate, and Bishop Pedro Batigue, Bishop of San Pablo, at the Don Bosco Seminary Canlubang, Laguna.

The National Shrine of Mary, Help of Christians

National Shrine of Mary, Help of Christians
But all the while, the whole Salesian Family fixed their gaze upon a bigger sanctuary to be built in Metro Manila that on her feast day, May 24, 1972,  the cornerstone of the Shrine was laid by Archbishop Carmine Rocco in the land donated by the Serrano and Dolor families in Better Living Subdivision, Parañaque, adjacent to the then provincial office of the Salesians of Don Bosco.

In June of 1975 His Eminence Jaime Cardinal Sin, DD, Archbishop of Manila, created the Parish of Mary Help of Christians and on July 24, 1975 the parish of Mary Help of Christians was officially inaugurated. The Church was solemnly consecrated on December 4, 1976 during the Silver Jubilee Year celebrations of Salesians presence in the Philippines.

On August 15, 1985, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines headed by Achbishop Antonio Mabutas, gave the approval of the statutes bestowing upon the church the title of a National Shrine. The Solemn Proclamation took place on August 24, 1985, the solemn mass and official proclamation of the National Shrine were celebrated with Msgr. Bruno Torpigliani, Jaime Cardinal Sin, the Salesian order and devotees in attendance.

The Pilgrim image of Mary, Help of Christians
that tours the country
The devotion

The devotion to Mary as Help of Christians continues to spread all over the country, not only through the help of the Salesian Order but also through the faithful who experienced graces by invoking Our Lady in this unique advocation. Her feastday is still observed every May 24 everywhere in the country and pilgrims continuously flock her shrine up to the present. Today, a pilgrim image of Mary, Help of Christians is touring across the country to spread further the devotion to Mary as Help of Christians.

For Don Bosco, the Immaculate Virgin, Mary Help of Christians, was the ever-present Mother who helps her children daily, going to their rescue and leading them to Jesus. "Be devoted to Mary Help of Christians", he would often say, "and you will see what miracles are!" In the Catholic tradition, the daily praying of the Rosary is not only a Marian devotion, but above all the contemplation of Jesus in the mysteries of his saving Incarnation.  And for Don Bosco, Mary is the powerful Helper who defends the Church and the Pope from every kind of danger.

As we end this blog entry dedicated to Mary, Help of Christians, here is a reminder from St. John Bosco for devotees of Mary, Help of Christians. "Be devoted to Mary most holy; frequently call on her. Never was it known that anyone who trustingly had recourse to her was not promptly heard."

Reference:

Historical Background of Mary, Help of Christians, Retrieved from  http://nsmhcp.weebly.com/history.html.
Novena Prayer guide to Mary, Help of Christians, National shrine and Parish of Mary, Help of  Christians, Betterliving Subdivision, Parañaque City.
Mary, Help of Christians Fiesta 2000 [Souvenir Program] (2000), National shrine and Parish of Mary,  Help of Christians, Betterliving Subdivision, Parañaque City.