By Christina Hermoso
The National Shrine of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in New Manila, Quezon City will be formally elevated into a minor basilica on March 25, Monday, during a Holy Mass at 6 p.m.
A solemn procession follows the mass.
The Vatican’s Office of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments approved the application of the Diocese
of Cubao to elevate the parish church to a minor basilica in a letter dated November 30, 2018.
“At the request of His Excellency, the Most Reverend Honesto F. Ongtioco, Bishop of Cubao, in a letter given on the 17th of August 2018, expressing the prayers and desires of the clergy and the lay faithful, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, with the power of faculties given to it by the Supreme Pontiff Francis, very willingly bestows upon the parish church in the city of New Manila, Quezon City, which is dedicated to God in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel, the title and dignity of a Minor Basilica,” read the letter.
Minor basilicas are important churches that meet certain requirements and are accorded rights and liturgical privileges, according to Roberto Cardinal Sarah in his announcement, citing the Vatican document ‘Domus Ecclesiae’ which was promulgated on November 9, 1989.
“They are traditionally recognized because of their antiquity, dignity, historical value, architectural and artistic worth, and/or significance as centers of worship. A basilica must have been dedicated to God by a liturgical rite and must stand out as a center of active and pastoral liturgy,” the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines said.
The cornerstone of the Mount Carmel Parish in New Manila, Quezon City was blessed on December 30, 1954. It was inaugurated by J. Rufino Cardinal Santos on July 16, 1964, on the feast day of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. It was declared a parish in 1975 and as a national shrine on December 14, 2015.