- Over 7,000 devotees celebrated the 400th anniversary of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel de Sebastian on its arrival in the Philippines
- Devotees joined 4-kilometer procession from Quirino Grandstand to San Sebastian Basilica
- Image was a gift from the Discalced Carmelite Nuns from San Jose Monastery in Mexico City
Over 7,000 devotees celebrated the 400th anniversary of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel de Sebastian’s arrival in the Philippines; joining the four-kilometer procession from the Quirino Grandstand to the San Sebastian Basilica.
Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo, who is a Marian devotee, welcomed the image of Mt. Carmel when it arrived at 5:00 a.m. on Friday, May 4, at the Manila Bay.
The traslacion started at 8:30 a.m. from Quirino Grandstand and passed through Quiapo Church. It arrived at the San Sebastian Basilica at 11:00 a.m.
The image was a gift from the Discalced Carmelite Nuns from San Jose Monastery in Mexico City and was brought to the Philippines by the third group of Augustinian Recollect Missionaries on May 4, 1618.
It was first enshrined at the Recollect Church of San Juan de Bagumbayan.
In 1621, it was enshrined at San Sebastian Basilica.
Teo said the Marian celebration is a good indication that faith-based tourism destination contribute significantly to the country’s tourism industry.
“Filipinos find comfort to the image of Mt. Carmel and it is a beautiful scene to witness. In addition to the scenic sites of centuries-old churches all over the country, our devotional practices are attracting more and more faith-based tourists,” she said.
Rev. Fr. Robin Plata, one of the event organizers, thanked the DOT for promoting the faith-based tourism in the country.
“It is a good avenue to promote our rich religious culture. Our faith as Christians really gave us the iconic places and memorials that we have that will attract pilgrims and tourists,” he noted.