On Monday, July 12, the National Shrine of St. Joseph in Mandaue City, Cebu announced that the Philippines’s oldest St. Joseph image will be granted episcopal coronation. The coronation was approved by Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma, who will be leading the Mass for the coronation together with Auxiliary Bishop Midyphil Billones. Auxiliary Bishop Billones is also the rector of the national shrine.
“The whole praying community of the National Shrine of Saint Joseph gladly informs everyone that in expression of our sincere devotion and love, the Archdiocese of Cebu has approved the request of the lay faithful of Mandaue,” the Shrine’s post said, “that the Oldest Venerated Image of Saint Joseph in the Philippines (c.1600) be granted and given an Episcopal Coronation.” (Read: 3 Ways St. Joseph Proved He Was an Exemplary Father)
The coronation will be happening on August 8 at 4PM during the Eucharistic Celebration.
The Year of St. Joseph
The coronation of the image of St. Joseph also coincides with the celebration of the Year of St. Joseph, which Pope Francis proclaimed in December 2020. The Year of St. Joseph marks the 150th year since Jesus’s legal father was declared the Patron of the Universal Church. It will be celebrated from December 8, 2020 to December 8, 2021.
Apart from the Year of St. Joseph, the Catholic Church in the Philippines is also commemorating 500 years of Christianity in the country this year. The Archdiocese of Mandaue will also be celebrating the 20th anniversary of the National Shrine during the Mass, as it was on August 6, 2001 that the church was elevated to National Shrine status by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP).
The National Shrine of St. Joseph was the first of its kind in the Visayas region.
You may check the official Facebook page of the National Shrine for more updates on the episcopal coronation of the image of St. Joseph on August 8.