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HISTORY OF THE PARISH

MARY QUEEN OF APOSTLES PARISH:

CHALLENGES AND BLESSINGS

 

It was on July 22, 1985 when Jaime Cardinal Sin divided the Parish of Most Holy Rosary, which covered a large area in Parañaque and the CAA in Las Pinas into two, giving the other half to a new parish,  the Mary Queen of Apostles Parish.  The newly established Parish is located between the municipalities of Las Piñas and Parañaque and actually has a population of around 90,000, among them 85% are Catholics.

On October 8,1985, the first Mass was celebrated in the Chapel of San Antonio Valley 6 Subdivision.  It was on this day that the parish dream started.  The fervent wish for a Parish Center and for a Central Parish Church began to be nurtured.

From then on, a difficult search for a center, a focal point for the dream and a home for the parishioners, began The quest was for a center to build families imbued with joy and openness, a common place for reconciliation, a workplace of partnership and productivity; a place for friendship that is not stifling, but marked by a willingness to serve for the good of another.  That was the dream.  That was the fervent wish.

Those were days of anxiety, misgiving and even fear.  As problems piled up, uncertainty loomed.  But challenged to make the dream come true,  and undaunted by the seemingly insurmountable odds, Fathers Giulio F. Mariani and Gianni Sandalo, together with the parishioners, stormed heaven’s doors.  God, through the powerful intercession of Mary, Queen of Apostles, listened.

A most accessible, centrally located, and spacious site was found.  Financial support started pouring in from generous people.  The parishioners were galvanized into action and pitched in.

The first stone was put in place and the Parish Center slowly took shape.  On June 12,1988, it was inaugurated.

Still there was more to be done.  The main Parish Church was not yet constructed.

A group of committed parishioners spent hours of planning to support the priests in this endeavor.  The love and solidarity of all parishioners were put to a test.  The trial did not drive them to despair but to a new acknowledgment of their puniness and of their need to come into  closer relationship with God and people.  Their struggle to build the Mary Queen of Apostles Parish was transformed into a new sense of trust and faith in Him, a new dimension of hope that He would embrace them, lightened their burden and brightened their path.

October 6,1990 was a day of joy, of tears, of awe.  The first Mass in the new Central Parish Church was celebrated and on May 18,1991 it was dedicated and consecrated.

Other accomplishments added greater significance to this place of worship.  On October 5,1991, the Chapel of Adoration was blessed.  On October 3,1992  the Way of the Cross in the church was blessed,  and on May 16,1993 the Parish Solidarity Center was inaugurated.  This center is now the hub of livelihood projects especially designed to improve the way of life of the economically deprived parishioners.

On October 2,1993 the Parish Grotto of our Lady was consecrated and on October 1,1994, the Ten Commandments marker was blessed.

There is always joy and praise of thanksgiving in every celebration of the parish.  Every milestone strengthens and nourishes the commitment of every parishioner.  Every parish event fanned the spark of solidarity to build ONE PARISH, ONE FAMILY.

Side by side with the building of the Parish Center and the Central Parish Church, activities were undertaken to bring support and alleviation to the poor in the parish.

On January  6,1996 the first free clinic was opened.

To address the need for spiritual upliftment, the first “Life in the Spirit Seminar” was held at the Martinville subdivision Chapel on February 9,1986; the Parish Catholic Women’s League was organized in February 1986; and the first Parish Fiesta was held on May 25, 1986.

The year 1988 rolled on with more projects of sharing, like the blessing of the renovated CAA (Civil Aeronautic Administration) Chapel in Purok 2, the conduct of the first Bible Study, the launching of the first Popularity Contest, the offering of a vocational training program, opening of the first dental clinic, the establishment of the parish Knights of Columbus, and the blessing of the new Chapel at CAA Purok 4.

The year 1989 witnessed the holding of the first Parish Bible Congress, athletic feasts and other get-together activities.

1990 signaled the establishment of the Parish Pastoral Council, the umbrella organization tasked to plan, implement and monitor the parish work in coordination with the parish priest.

Religious activities formerly celebrated in the nearby chapel of SAV 2 and SAV 6 subdivisions were transferred to the new Parish Church. Meanwhile, building and renovation of the various Chapels -CAA -Purok 2 - 3- 4 - 1B- Timog, Martinville,  Lopez Village were undertaken. Twelve Masses are now celebrated every Sunday bringing the Good News to believers in every nook of the parish. Where before one mass wedding was celebrated once a year, now monthly mass weddings are carried out. Our medical and dental clinics are now open from Monday to Saturday instead of just once a month previously. Livelihood programs are conducted on the regular basis.

Along with the challenge of evangelization and service, the different church organizations and movements  flourished and their memberships increased. The support and inspiration of the parishioners enabled these groups to carry out their  programs. Prayers and projects brought about the miracles that unfolded during the last 25 years.

Looking back, the chronicle of parish events from 1985 to 2010 is a story of challenges and blessings, of love and beautiful communion among people giving glory to God by loving and serving one another with selfless dedication.

Now Mary Queen of Apostles Parish continues her journey ahead. Many times the road  may be rough, but with faith and hope, the journey will continue to be filled with enthusiasm as new hopes unfurl.

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