Pangasinan, pilgrimage capital of the Philippines

OVER the past decades, thousands of Catholic pilgrims from all over the country trek to Pangasinan regularly, specifically, to Manaoag to visit and pray at The Minor Basilica of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary of Manaoag.

The many recorded miracles attributed to the image of Our Lady of Manaoag, some of which are depicted in murals inside the church’s transepts and nave, are enough to make a grateful devotee constantly return to pray.

Other churches worthy of note are the old churches built in the 18th century are found in Pangasinan. They are in Lingayen, San Carlos City, Calasiao, Mangaldan, San Jacinto, Malasiqui, Bautista, San Manuel, Asingan, Bugallon, Bolinao and Dagupan City (restored).

With the recent inauguration of the Pilgrimage Island inside the Hundred Islands National Park, Pangasinan can, in no time, establish itself as the country’s premier pilgrimage destination for Catholics around the globe.

In fact, long before the Pilgrimage Island was developed, major tour operators in the country have already been promoting day trips to Manaoag and other churches in Pangasinan.

Towards this end, the provincial tourism office and its counterparts in towns and cities that host churches with established prominence among the laity and clergy should convene to plan posthaste the development and promotion of Pangasinan as the “Pilgrimage capital of the Philippines.”

The local governments that host the “must-see’ churches would be well advised to organize and establish support activities, particularly peace and order, for the arrival such tourists.


One and only Duterte

SOME two years back, President Duterte gave the poor belonging to Kadamay some hundreds or so houses. That’s when the Kadamay, whose members are mainly marginalized, suddenly occupied houses intended for policemen and other government beneficiaries.

In the recent commencement exercises of the Philippine Military Academy in Baguio City, Mr. Duterte gifted the class valedictorian with a house-and-lot.  Just two weeks back, he also handed out a similar house-and-lot present to the graduating valedictorian of the PNPA (Philippine National Police Academy) in Silang, Cavite.

This week, the President offered free housing to some 76 Abu Sayyaf bandits who surrendered last year.  And did not the President also just send several New People’s Army surrenderers, including lady rebels, to a Hong Kong holiday?  Tell us, where in the world can you find someone as benevolent a President like Duterte?

None, by golly.

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