Tandang Sora birthplace now a shrineBy Julie M. Aurelio
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—The birthplace of Philippine Revolution heroine Melchora Aquino is now an officially declared national shrine by virtue of a resolution of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines.
A historical marker was unveiled Saturday morning at the heroine’s birthplace and tomb on Banlat Road in Tandang Sora as a testament to her bravery and kindness.
With the NHCP’s declaration, Quezon City now has two national historical shrines – the Tandang Sora shrine and the Quezon Memorial Shrine where President Manuel L. Quezon’s remains are entombed
Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista received the historical marker from the NHCP on behalf of the city government, which announced its year-long celebration of Tandang Sora’s 200th birth anniversary.
Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte, chair of Task Force Tandang Sora, said the declaration was in support of the year-long festivities, which began on Jan. 6 which the reinterment of the heroine’s remains in Banlat.
“We hope that our people will be one with us in continuing the values and legacy of Tandang Sora, the Grand Old Lady of the Katipunan,” she said.
NHCP chairperson Dr. Maria Serena I. Diokno led the marker’s unveiling with Bautista, Belmonte, and Tandang Sora’s descendants as witnesses.
The Quezon City Council earlier declared the year 2012 as Tandang Sora Year through Ordinance No. SP-2092, S-2011.
The Quezon City government has lined up projects by which to remember and celebrate Tandang Sora’s long life, such as a documentary, a traveling photo exhibit and a Gawad Tandang Sora award for outstanding women in the community.
Belmonte said that the city government will team up with the SM mall chain for the traveling photo exhibit, and the University of the Philippines’ history department for the documentary.
Aquino was born on Jan. 6, 1812 and is well known for offering her hut and meals to sick and resting Katipuneros during the Philippine Revolution despite her old age.
Because of her offer of aid, food and shelter, Tandang Sora was charged with helping the revolutionaries in 1896 and was banished to Guam after her arrest.
She stayed there for seven years, working as a servant until her return to the country in 1903. She died in 1919 at the age of 107.