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Tarlac’s Marian image receives pontifical coronation

Tarlac’s Marian image receives pontifical coronation

Archbishop Charles Brown, Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines, leads the pontifical coronation of of Mater Dolorosa de Capas at the San Sebastian Cathedral in Tarlac City on June 5. PHOTO FROM CAPAS INFORMATION OFFICE

By Aimee Yeo

June 6, 2021

Manila, Philippines

The venerated image of Mater Dolorosa de Capas has received a canonical coronation over the weekend.

Archbishop Charles Brown, apostolic nuncio to the Philippines, crowned the image during Mass at the San Sebastian Cathedral in Tarlac City on June 5.

In his homily, the nuncio asked the faithful to turn to Mary to pray for “our difficulties, the sorrows, the sadness of our human lives”.

“Let us allow her to present them to Jesus, the Heavenly Father,” Brown said. “Let us remember that in our Catholic faith, sorrow will be turned into joy. That joy will have the last word.”

“These sorrows will be turned into joy because Jesus is the joy of our heart and Mary is the mother who brings that joy into the world,” said.

Seven other prelates led by Bishop Enrique Macaraeg of Tarlac attended the ceremony, along with several priests, nuns, and lay faithful while observing health protocols.

Although the pontifical coronation was held at the cathedral, the image is enshrined at the Our Lady of Sorrows Parish Church in Capas town’s Dolores village.

“Bishop Macaraeg dreams to a have a center of Marian devotion in the region and hopefully, hopefully, this will be it,” said Fr. Melvin Castro, the parish priest.

The Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of Sacraments approved the parish petition for the canonical coronation of their patroness on Oct. 1, 2020.

Saturday’s occasion was the first such coronation in the diocese’s 58-year history. But Fr. Castro said the devotion to Mater Dolorosa started as early as 1923.

In 2018, the image was honored with an episcopal coronation.

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