The aftermath of the fire that destroyed the rectory of the St. Joseph Cathedral in Romblon, Romblon. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE DIOCESE OF ROMBLON

By CBCP News

June 1, 2023

Manila, Philippines

A fire ripped through the centuries-old rectory of St. Joseph Cathedral in Romblon diocese recently, destroying canonical books and other important documents.

Bishop Narciso Abellana of Romblon said the fire, which broke out in the early morning of May 27, razed down almost everything except the structure’s old stone pillars.

“It is, indeed, a tragedy… All the canonical books and other records were turned to ashes,” Abellana said in a statement released May 31.

The rectory, which also housed the parish office, was declared a national cultural treasure by the National Museum of the Philippines.

It also played host to the temporary museum of the diocese, keeping several religious artifacts from the different parishes.

“Our link to the past was eaten by fire,” he lamented.

Amid plans to rebuild the convent, the bishop also made a public appeal for generosity that will help them reconstruct the rectory.

He particularly asked the faithful to support the second collection to be conducted in all Sunday Masses this whole month June for the project.


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