Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage
Nuestra Señora de la Paz y Buen Viaje
Mahal na Birhen ng Kapayapaan at Mabuting Paglalakbay
The original image at the main retablo of the Cathedral
LocationAntipolo, Philippines
Date25 March 1626
TypeWooden statue
ApprovalPope Pius XI
Pope Francis
Venerated inCatholic Church
ShrineAntipolo Cathedral
Diocese of Antipolo
Antipolo, Rizal
AttributesDark complexion, enlarged iris, unbounded hair
Feast dayFirst Tuesday in May

Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage (Spanish: Nuestra Señora de la Paz y Buen Viaje; Filipino: Mahal na Birhen ng Kapayapaan at Mabuting Paglalakbay),[citation needed] also known as Our Lady of Antipolo and the Virgin of Antipolo (Filipino: Virgen ng Antipolo), is a seventeenth-century Roman Catholic wooden image of the Blessed Virgin Mary as venerated in the Philippines. This Black Madonna is enshrined in Antipolo Cathedral in the Sierra Madre mountains east of Metro Manila.[1]

The image was brought to the country by governor-general Juan Niño de Tabora from Mexico via the galleon El Almirante in 1626. His safe voyage across the Pacific Ocean was attributed to the image, which was given the title of "Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage". It was substantiated later by six other successful voyages of the Manila-Acapulco Galleons with the image aboard as its patroness.[1][2]

Pope Pius XI issued a Pontifical decree to crown the image in 1925. The statue is one of the most celebrated Marian images in the Philippines, having been mentioned by national martyr José Rizal in his writings.[3] From May to July each year, the image attracts millions of pilgrims from all over the country and abroad.


On 25 March 1626, the galleon trading ship El Almirante left Acapulco, Mexico, carrying the newly appointed governor-general of the Spanish East Indies, Don Juan Niño de Tabora, who brought with him the statue. He arrived in Manila on 18 July 1626, and the statue was brought to San Ignacio Church of the Jesuits in Intramuros. When governor Tabora died in 1632, the statue was given to the Jesuits for enshrinement in the church of Antipolo, which was then being built in the present-day barangay Santa Cruz.

The beliefs and traditions conducted through Our Lady of Antipolo are of animist origins and are connected with the Tagalog male boatman sea god Maguayen, which was originally a Visayan deity, known to be a god and a goddess in the Visayas. Trade and migration between the Tagalog and Visayan instilled the beliefs of Maguayen on the animist religion of the Tagalog, which was later inputted towards Catholic beliefs on the Virgin Mary.[4]

Claims of miracles

During construction of the Antipolo church in the 1630s, the image would mysteriously vanish several times from its shrine, only to reappear atop a tipolo tree (a type of breadfruit; Artocarpus blancoi, which is native to the Philippines and had spread to Latin America). This was taken as a celestial sign, and the church was relocated to where the tipolo tree stood. The image's pedestal is supposedly made from the trunk of that same tipolo tree,[5] which also gave its name to Antipolo itself.[3]

In 1639, the Chinese rose in revolt, burning the town and the church. Fearing for the statue's safety, governor Sebastián Hurtado de Corcuera ordered its transfer to Cavite, where it was temporarily enshrined. governor Hurtado later ordered the statue removed from its Cavite shrine in 1648, and it was shipped back to Mexico aboard the galleon San Luis. At the time, the statue of a saint onboard served as a ship's patron saint or protector of the Acapulco trade.

The statue crossed the Pacific six times aboard the following Manila-Acapulco galleons:

A royal decree by Queen Isabella II on 19 May 1864 ordered that the parishes of Saint Nicholas of Tolentino be turned over to the Jesuits in exchange for the parishes of Antipolo, Taytay and Morong, which were given to the Augustinian Recollects. The latter order thus came into possession of the image.

Second world war

A replica in the image's veneration chapel behind the main altar. The glass cases contain the original image's regalia, perfumes, and scale models of the galleons it travelled on.

In 1944, the Japanese Imperial Army invaded the town and turned it into a garrison, with the shrine being used as an arsenal. To save the image, the church's head sacristan, Procopio Ángeles, wrapped it in a thick woollen blanket and placed it in an empty petrol drum, which he then buried in a nearby kitchen.

Fighting between imperial Japanese troops and the combined American and Filipino forces drove Ángeles and other devotees to exhume the image and move it to Sitio Colaique on the border with Angono. From there, it was spirited away to the lowland Barangay Santolan in Pasig, and then to the town center of Pasig itself. The statue was then kept by Rosario Alejandro (née Ocampo), daughter of Pablo Ocampo, at the Ocampo-Santiago family residence on Hidalgo Street, Quiapo, Manila, before it was enshrined inside Quiapo Church for the remainder of the Second World War.[5]

On 15 October 1945, the statue was translated back to its church in Antipolo, where it remains today.

Pontifical approbations

Cathedral shrine

Main article: Antipolo Cathedral

The first missionaries in Antipolo were the Franciscans, who arrived in the vicinity in 1578.[3] The Jesuits then followed and administered the church from 1591 until May 1768, when the decree expelling the Jesuits from Spanish lands reached Manila.

The church was greatly damaged during the Chinese uprising of 1639, the 1645 Luzon earthquake, and the earthquakes of 1824 and 1883. Notable Filipino historians such as Pedro Chirino and Pedro Murillo Velarde (also a prominent cartographer) ministered at the church.

The Diocese of Antipolo was created on 24 January 1983 and was canonically erected on 25 June 1983 at the diocese's new see, which bears the formal title of "International Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage-Immaculate Conception Parish".


Antipolo Pilgrimage Season
Ahunan sa Antipolo
Observed byAntipolo
ObservancesProcessions, Rosary and novena prayers
BeginsFirst Tuesday in May
EndsFirst Tuesday in July (or second Tuesday if it starts on 6 or 7 May)
2023 date2 May – 4 July
2024 date7 May – 9 July
2025 date6 May – 8 July
2026 date5 May – 7 July

Pilgrimages to the image's shrine begin and peak in May, which in Catholicism is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. It is initiated yearly by the "Pagdalaw ng Ina sa Anak" (Mother's Visit to her Son), which is the temporary transfer of the image from Antipolo Cathedral to Quiapo Church, where the Black Nazarene is enshrined. It is usally done on the Saturday before 1 May. A welcome Mass is held in Quiapo Church in the morning. On the evening of 30 April, thousands of devotees from Metro Manila customarily perform the Alay Lakad (literally, “Walk Offering”), where pilgrims spend the night travelling on foot to the shrine, where they hear Mass at dawn.[10]

The custom of visiting the Antipolo shrine in May, however, was already recorded by the 19th century. On 6 June 1868, a young José Rizal and his father Don Francisco Mercado, visited the shrine in thanksgiving after the boy and his mother, Teodora Alonso, survived his delivery in 1861.[11]

Every first Tuesday in May, a procession of the image starts at 7:00 a.m. from the cathedral to Pinagmisahan Hill, where, at the end, a Mass is celebrated. It was here on 3 May, the Feast of the Holy Cross, that a wooden cross was blessed and erected. Since 1947, a commemorative thanksgiving Mass is celebrated on the first Tuesday in May, inaugurating the start of the nine-week Pilgrimage Season (Filipino: Ahunan) which ends on the first Tuesday in July.[12]


In December 2011, the Eternal Word Television Network programme Mary: Mother of the Philippines ran an episode showcasing the statue as the “most traveled Marian icon in the Philippines”.[citation needed]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Diocese of Antipolo". CBCP Online. Archived from the original on 28 August 2012.
  2. ^ "Our Lady of Antipolo (Birhen ng Antipolo)". Ministry to Filipinos, Diocese of Orlando. Archived from the original on 8 August 2014.
  3. ^ a b c "Antipolo History". Retrieved 2 March 2013.
  4. ^ Alberts, Tara; Irving, D. R. M (2014). Intercultural Exchange in Southeast Asia: History and Society in the Early Modern World. I.B. Tauris
  5. ^ a b "Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage". Retrieved 22 February 2013.
  6. ^ "Vatican designates Antipolo Church as 'international shrine'". CBCPNews. 26 June 2022. Retrieved 27 June 2022.
  7. ^ Sarao, Zacarian (26 June 2022). "Vatican declares Antipolo Cathedral 'international shrine'; first in PH". INQUIRER.net. Retrieved 27 June 2022.
  8. ^ Santos, Jamil (26 January 2024). "Bishops, devotees mark declaration of Antipolo Cathedral as international shrine". GMA Integrated News.
  9. ^ Hermoso, Christina (26 February 2024). "Pope Francis gifts Antipolo Cathedral with Golden Rose". Manila Bulletin. Retrieved 27 February 2024.
  10. ^ "ANTIPOLO - RIZAL TRAVEL TIPS AND GENERAL INFORMATION". Philippines Travel Information. Philippines Travel and Hotel Guide. 2013. A month-long celebration to honor the Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage. Devotees are seen taking the much-trodden pat leading to Antipolo. The image, which is already three centuries old, is said to exhibit supernatural powers. On the evenings of April 30, thousands of pilgrims from several places in Metro Manila and the nearby towns begin an annual trek on foot.
  11. ^ Jose Rizal University (2004). "In Calamba, Laguna". JoseRizal.ph. Retrieved 1 May 2015. 6 June 1868 With his father, Rizal made a pilgrimage to Antipolo to fulfill the vow made by his mother to take the child to the Shrine of the Virgin of Antipolo should she and her child survive the ordeal of delivery which nearly caused his mother's life.
  12. ^ Andrade, Nel (2 May 2022). "Pilgrims to flock to Antipolo's cathedral for May pilgrimage season". Manila Bulletin. Retrieved 28 April 2023.