Officials of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Kalookan unveiled on Thursday the historical marker recognizing the San Roque Cathedral Parish and its role during the Philippine-American war.
Aside from its historical records, NHCP Chairman Dr. Rene Escalante also acknowledged the role of the Kalookan Cathedral last 2021. The cathedral opened a community pantry serving thousands of marginalized daily — inspired by the Maginhawa Community Pantry initiated by Ana Patricia Non.
Escalante also said that the cathedral can now be funded with the help of government institutions and taxes from the people.
Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) and Kalookan Bishop Pablo Virgilio David said that it is the Christian community of Caloocan was marked as they are the reason why the church was built.
“Mahalaga ang pagiging mulat sa kasaysasayan. Ang kasaysasayan ay pagbibigay saysay sa ngayon. Akala ng marami ang kasaysasayan ay tungkol lamang sa paggunita sa kahapon, ang saysay ng paggunita sa kahapon ay dahil gusto nating bigyang saysay ang ngayon upang makita natin ang direksyon bukas,” Bishop David added.
Before culminating the event, Bishop David and Fr. Jerome Cruz, rector of the cathedral handed a replica of San Roque de Caloocan to NHCP officials.
The marker was mounted through the initiative of Cultural Heritage of the Diocese of Kalookan headed by Fr. Paul Woo.
The Kalookan Cathedral marker is the fourth parish mounted with a historical marker in the Philippines — first in Shrine of Immaculate Conception in 2007, San Bartolome Church in 2015 and Shrine of San Jose in 2021.
It is good to know the facts/reasons why the Kalookan Cathedral is recognized as a National Historical Shrine as evidenced by the inscriptions on the marker mounted prominently at the church’ facade. It is a sad realization though , that as is, it has no deep personal and collective “connect” to a significant national context as to arouse a strong patriotic/nationalistic pride that would serve as a PUSH to want to continue to live and BUILD on with that legacy.
SUGGESTION: Clinch that “connect” by adding a smaller marker ( below the NHCP marker )bearing the message above ( also in Filipino ) by CBCP President and Bishop of the Diocese of Kalookan. BP. AMbo David: “Mahalaga ang pagiging mulat sa kasaysayan. Ang kasaysayan ay pagbibigay saysay sa ngayon. Akala ng marami ang kasaysayan ay tungkol lamang sa paggunita sa kahapon, ang saysay ng paggunita sa kahapon ay dahil gusto nating bigyang saysay ang ngayon upang makita natin ang direksyon bukas! – Bishop Pablo Virgilio David