Wednesday, November 2, 2016

271. STA. FILOMENA OF ALCALA, CAGAYAN

STA. FILOMENA, enshrined in the ancient brick church of
Alcala, Cagayan--the widest church in the Philippines
Sta. Filomena (Filia + Luminus , daughter of light, aka St. Philomene), was a martyr-saint whose remains in the catacombs of Priscilla were discovered in May 1802.

TOMBSTONE INSCRIPTIONS, found on the tomb of Sta. Filomena
On the three stones that sealed the tomb, were the inscriptions: "LUMENA - PAX TE - CUM FI" (“Peace be to you, Filomena”), followed by these symbols: two anchors, three arrows a palm, and a lily.

STA. FILOMENA, VIRGEN y MARTIR
Antique print
Her remains were removed to Mugnano del Cardinale in 1805, where several miracles caused her devotion to spread. Credited to her was the healing of Venerable Pauline Jaricot in 1835. It was Saint John Vianney was instrumental in popularizing her cult.

MARTYRDOM OF STA. FILOMENA
Antique print,
In 1833 a Neapolitan nun had a vision in which the saint revealed that she was a 13 year old Greek princess, martyred by Roman Emperor Diocletian. Though venerated by many Popes (she was canonized in 1837) and her feast observed in some places, Sta. Filomena was never included in the General Roman Calendar for universal use.

In Feb. 1961, the Holy See had her name removed from all liturgical calendars that mentioned her. This order did not call into question her existence or sainthood, nor prevent popular devotion to the saint.

ST.PHILOMENE CHURCH, Alcala, Cagayan
source: wikipedia.com
In the Philippines, an ancient church in Alcala, Cagayan has become the seat of her local devotion—the church of Sta. Filomena (St. Philomene Church).

The Spanish colonial brick-red church is regarded as the widest church in the Philippines, and the largest in the Archdiocese of Tuguegarao at 67 m in length, 24 m in width, and 12.5 m in height. Construction began in 1881 under the term of Fr. Casamiro Gonzalez, which was completed by Fr. Pedro Perez.


 Enshrined in the altar is the revered image of Sta. Filomena, an old de vestir image, dressed in her vestment and holding a palm of her martyrdom. The origins of this image is not known. Sta. Filomena, is the patroness of young girls, babies and youths.

STA. FILOMENA NOVENA
composed by St. John  Ma.Vianney
Besides Alcala, Cagayan, she is also the patron saint of several Philippine places such as Sibonga (Cebu) where a fiesta is held in the first week of August). There are also barangays named after her: Sta. Filomena in Iligan City, Guagua (Pampanga) , Cordillera Adminstrative Region, Alegria (Cebu), San Pablo City and Siquijor.

2 comments:

  1. I'm glad that you still update your blog sir! At age 21, I am very interested in our country's rich culture, which includes religion and the religious arts. :)

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  2. I try to post one article a week. I manage 6 blogs so sometimes,my postings get delayed what with the amount of research I have to do. Many thanks for visiting.

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