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Malate Church declared ‘important cultural property’ by National Museum

By Evelyn Macairan / Published Apr 24, 2023 8:09 pm Updated Apr 25, 2023 8:37 am

The 435-year-old baroque style Our Lady of Remedies Parish, more popularly known as Malate Church, is now an “important cultural property” (ICP) declared by the National Museum of the Philippines (NMP).

CBCPNews, the official news service provider of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, reported that the designation was formally conferred in a ceremony at the Malate Church compound on April 22.

The Malate Church, which was first built in 1588, houses the image of Our Lady of Remedies that was brought over from Spain in 1624.

An ICP is defined as an establishment that has “exceptional cultural, artistic, and historical significance to the Philippines.”

The Cultural Properties Preservation and Protection Act, the National Museum Act of 1998, and the National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009, mandates the NMP to declare ICPs or National Cultural Treasures.

ICPs may receive subsidies and other supporting measures from the government for their preservation and conservation.

Fr. Leo Distor, SSC, parish priest of the church, National Museum administrative officer IV Roderick Manaloto and Manila Mayor Honey Lacuna-Pangan unveiled the marker stating the church complex as an important cultural property in an event last Saturday afternoon.

They also signed the National Museum’s declaration during the program.

The National Museum’s marker was placed below a church bell that bore the inscription “Ntra. Sra. de los Remedios. Se fundio de 30 de Enero de 1879,” translated, “Our Lady of Remedies was founded on January 30, 1879.”

In granting the Important Cultural Property status, the National Museum classified Malate Church as a “Spanish colonial era church complex.”

Compliant to provisions of Presidential Decree No. 374 and Republic Act No. 10066 known as laws on heritage preservation, the National Museum issued the official museum declaration for the Malate Church complex as an Important Cultural Property in December 2018.

Editor's note: This article first appeared in