The Manila Cathedral, the seat of the Archbishop of Manila, is one of the city’s iconic Catholic basilicas. The current building is the sixth in the basilica’s 400-year history after having been destroyed by natural disasters, fires , earthquakes and war bomdardment.
The current structure standing was completed in 1958 after American forces carpet-bombed Manila particularly Intramuros, the Sapnish walled city where the Manila Cathedral is located. The first cathedral built by Spanish priests in 1582 was made of nipa and bamboo. It was damaged by a typhoon in 1582 and razed by fire in 1583. Subsequent buildings were made of stone but natural disasters such as the earthquakes of 1645 and 1863, and more recently the bombing of Manila in 1945 reduced the magnificient old cathedral to rubble.
An favorite wedding venue of Manila celebrities and the elite, the Manila Cathedral is also the resting place of the Manila’s archibishops including Archbishop Jaime Cardinal Sin. The Cathedral was also the venue for the wake and requiem mass for former Philippine President Corazon Aquino, who died on August 1, 2009. Aquino’s funeral broke protocol when Aquino’s remains was allowed to lie in state at the Cathedral, making her the first woman to be interred in the basilica.
Mabuhay ang Manila Cathedral!