PARAÑAQUE City, Aug. 28, 2015 – Guess what, besides flowers and prayers, the Redemptorist religious and Marian devotees of Baclaran have something more to offer the Queen of Heaven on her forthcoming birthday: a carillon bell tower.
Bells of St. Mary
The sky-high structure is expected to be blessed by no less than Manila Archbishop Luís Antonio G. Cardinal Tagle at 6 a.m. on Sept. 8, the Feast of the Nativity of Mary, the official social media page of the National Shrine of Our Mother of Perpetual Help (OMPH) announces.
A coffee shop near the base of the tower dubbed Café María is also set for inauguration.
A Mass will be celebrated right after.
Fr. Joseph O. Echano, shrine rector and head of Baclaran’s Redemptorist community, invites the public to witness and be part of the historic event.
In an interview with CBCP News, the priest said the decision to build the carillon bell tower is in line with the ongoing beautification and redevelopment of the shrine ahead of the 150th anniversary in 2016 of the papal entrustment of the Perpetual Help icon to the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer (C.Ss.R.).
According to Echano, the number of visitors to the shrine on a regular Wednesday alone is estimated at 100,000, but this can balloon to as many as 150,000 and beyond on the first Wednesday of the month.
Costing Php 10,084,000, the carillon bell tower which devotees and pilgrims helped fund features mosaics of Our Mother of Perpetual Help on each side. (Raymond A. Sebastián / CBCP News)