Manila Cathedral reopens doors on April 9
MANILA, Philippines—After more than two years of major repairs and restoration, the Manila Cathedral is reopening its doors to churchgoers and devotees on April 9, just a few days before Holy Week.
This was announced recently over Church-run Radio Veritas by Henrietta de Villa, vice chair of the Manila Cathedral Basilica Foundation Board of Trustees. The Catholic Church is celebrating Palm Sunday on April 12, which marks the start of Holy Week.
At 6 p.m. on April 9, a short video of the cathedral’s restoration and repair will be shown to guests and churchgoers before a Holy Mass that will be celebrated by Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, according to De Villa. “If you would look at the extent of work done in the cathedral, you wouldn’t think it can be finished this soon … but it is really moving to see how important the church is to the people in this kind of situation,” she said.
“The cathedral did not have a hard time looking for funds. The Manila archdiocese did not spend anything because a lot of people gave their contributions,” she added.
The cathedral has been closed to the public since Feb. 7, 2012, to make way for repairs and restoration, the first to be made on the structure since 1958. The cathedral’s origins date back to the 16th century. In an assessment made two years ago, cracks were noted on key sections of the basilica which compromised its structural integrity. It also revealed that some of its columns and beams did not meet the standards set by the 2010 National Structural Code of the Philippines.—Jocelyn R. Uy
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