Several streets in Manila were closed on May 4 for “Salubong and Traslacion,” a re-enactment of the historic arrival of the image of Our Lady of Mount Carmel from Mexico to the Philippines 400 years ago. The religious rites started at 3 am with prayers and a program at Quirino Grandstand, followed two hours later by a fluvial parade on Manila Bay. Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) president His Grace Archbishop Romulo Valles celebrated Mass at 6:30 a.m. The procession left the grandstand at 8 a.m.

As reported by,  Archbishop Valles said in a post on the CBCP website “We urgently need to seek Our Mother’s intercession to protect the Philippines against natural calamities, the ongoing attacks on the sanctity of life and of the family, and other serious difficulties that our nation faces.”

Brought by missionaries from the Order of Augustinian Recollects, the image of the Our Lady of Mount Carmel arrived in Manila in 1618. Initially housed at San Juan de Bautista de Bagumbayan Church in Luneta, it was enthroned at the first San Sebastian Church in Quiapo in 1621.