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Manila Archbishop Jose Cardinal Advincula (left, in gold vestment) leads the groundbreaking of Sto. Ni%uFFFDo Parish in Pandacan, Manila on Saturday (July 10, 2021). The church was gutted by a fire last year. (Photo from Sto Nino Parish Pandacan Facebook page)

New church to rise in Pandacan 

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Manila Archbishop Jose Cardinal Advincula on Saturday led the groundbreaking and site blessing for the building of a new Sto. Niño Parish in Pandacan, Manila, according to a report by Philippine News Agency.

“Brothers and sisters, today we will do the groundbreaking for the building of our church. What we will do in the ceremony of digging and blessing the earth is our recognition that this earth is God's grace and a sign of God's relationship with us. Now, God's people here in Pandacan recognize this land as the proof that God is faithful and that God will fulfill his promise to all of us,” Advincula said in his homily during the Mass for rites.

He assured the people that he is ready to listen to them, as the new head of the archdiocese.

“As your new father here in the Archdiocese of Manila, join me in rising up and starting again here in the Parish of Sto. Nino de Pandacan. I am here as a shepherd listening to your pleas and needs. The new church to be built on God's gifted land will be a place where Jesus dwells in his word, in the sacrament of body and blood, and in your fellowship, unity, and love, especially for those in need in your community,” he added.

The mass was co-celebrated by incoming Apostolic Vicar of Taytay, Palawan Bishop Broderick Pabillo.

After the ceremony, Caritas Manila, the social action arm of the Archdiocese of Manila with Advincula distributed gift checks and a bag of goods to some poor families who live within the vicinity of the parish.

The parish continues to ask for donations, those who would like to donate may visit its website: https://www.stoninodepandacan.com.

A year ago, a fire burned the church to ashes, including the image of the 400-year-old Sto. Niño, originally found by children in the early 1600s as well as the Chapel's wooden tabernacle.

The brass ciborium containing the Blessed Sacrament survived. The ciborium was found among the ashes unscathed, sealed, and with the Holy Eucharist intact.

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