St. Anne Parish and Diocesan Shrine History

The Grupo

In the year 1908 the Grupo started their annual feast. The first Ermita measured 6m x 10m, was built on the land of Silverio Merluza.

At present, it is owned by Dolores Villasenor VDA. De Guevarra, in the care of Nena Bendico. It is on the right side of the old road, built near the former elementary school. The school (Malicboy Elementary School) was made a Japanese garrison. According to the people of Sitio Crossing, adjacent to the former hermitage was built a tomb for the people killed by Japanese soldiers including three nuns in white.

The Grupo, led by Pio Dimalaluan and Enrique Glorioso agreed to seek the help of Lino Castro, who is from the town proper, Pagbilao and owner of the farm cultivated by Pio. Lino was the one who would invite a priest to say mass for their fiesta. Father and daughter; Lino and Ana then arranged that the fiesta mass on their farm be held on Ana's birthday which is July 26. On that day Ana Castro brought the picture of her patron saint, St. Anne. From then on, Ana brought the picture every year until she had it enshrined in the ermita under the care of Pio.

The Grupo is an organization of males in Malicboy.

  • Grupo ng Crossing – Enrique Glorioso, Boris Tiay and Felicisimo Tiay
  • Grupo ng Sapinit – Pio Dimalaluan, Cipriano Ayala, Catalino “Tog-ok” Catausan, and Miguel Merjudio

Lorenzo Salazar, a guy from Tuguegarao, Cagayan, left Malicboy on start the WWII, carrying the image of Sta. Ana.

A strong storm hit the village in 1926 and destroyed the Ermita.

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PHOTO: (from left to right) Mrs. Ferliza Mercurio, Mrs. Natalia Ayala, Mr. Deogracias Layos, Mrs. Magdalena Dequito, Mr. Santiago Salvacion, Mrs. Victoria Etcubañas, Mrs. Candida Glorioso (at the back) Mr. Hilarion Peña, Mr. Angel Glorioso, and Mr. Eusebio Lustado.

World War II

In 1937, before World War II, the elected Barrio Captain: Vicente Batilo, together with his constituents, built a new ermita on top of a hill owned by Severina Luna (mother of the Ayala Clan) to make it nearer to the community. The land is now owned by the Lukang family. People started building new houses around the then newly constructed train station. A contest in the barrio was conducted and was used as fund raising to build the Hermitage. One of the candidates was Mrs. Carmen Abrigo. There are no other images in the new Ermita but the Holy cross. Consequently, the Hermitage was adorned by flowers made of paper, there was always a reminder: "ito ay "Simbahan", Hindi sayawan" (this is a "Church", not a place for dancing). Fr. Francisco Ayala, a priest from Pagbilao, presided over the masses held there. He was assigned in Macalelon but returned to Pagbilao because of the war.

During these times, Ana hired an artist from Lucban, Lucilo Empamano, who decorated the ermita every year during the fiesta, to adorn the Hermitage. He made an image of patroness by dressing a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary, before it was called Mediatrix of All Graces, in a red cloth.

“Si Lucilo Empamano ay taga Lucban, walang asawa, at medyo malambot kung kumilos, siya ay isang pintor.”

Interview with Vicente & Natalia Ayala (February 20, 2007)

Lorenzo Salazar, a guy from Tuguegarao, Cagayan, left Malicboy on start the WWII, carrying the image of Sta. Ana.

The image of Sta. Ana was clothed by Ana Castro every feast. It is clothed in a White cloth with a Blue cape. (according to Carmen Abrigo). Because of the WWII, the vicinity of the Ermita was used as a Cemetery. 13-17 are known to be buried here currently, yet only 6 were named. They are: Arcelita Ayala, Amando (Andoy) Florantes, Jesus de Espiritu Santo, Simfro Batilo, Eleonor Catausan and Rodencio Catausan. Until such time that the structure was destroyed by termites, Malicboy had no permanent church. For quite a long time, the yearly mass celebrations were held under a temporary bamboo frame erected wherever they could arrange for space.

Angel Glorioso and the New Ermita

Another Ermita was built in land of Marquez (Sitio Magsaysay). Fr. Diogracias Medrano presided the masses held there. But it was again damaged only after a year. Later, on a lot inherited by Angel Glorioso from his father Enrique, a new wooden “ermita” with tin roof was built. This area used to be situated behind the houses and a warehouse owned by a Chinese businessman.

In 1948, in Lipa, Batangas, the Blessed Virgin Mary was announced as the Mediatrix of All Graces.

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Single St. Anne Image

The couple Angel and Canding (Catapat) went on to have the ermita built. The structure was made sturdy with wooden walls. In April of that year, a stranger had his car broke down near the railroad crossing which is near the couple's house. The occupants are from Pampanga and were selling Christ the King images. The strangers stayed in the couple's house for the night. By next day, an order was placed for an image of St. Anne based on the picture left behind by Ana Castro-Martinez. In May of that year, the new image was delivered. The image did not have an infant Mary yet, because the picture on which it was based on could be representing the time that St. Anne is still single.

With the image of St. Anne, the people were inspired to improve the “ermita”. Many contributed wooden planks for the walls. Dr. Rafael Borja donated the lacking wooden planks to have the walls completed in time for the fiesta of 1952.

The First Parish Church

In 1952, the first parish church of Sta. Ana was built, through the command of Bishop Alfredo Ma. Obviar, D.D, the first Bishop of Lucena, the scope of 5 Barangays: Binahaan, Ilaya and Ibabang Polo, & Silangan and Kanlurang Malicboy. From then on, the parish improved with a convent built in 1959. Also, the lot was elevated to avoid getting flooded.

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PHOTO: Malicboy Bario Fiesta Procession (July 26, 1957)

The Request

A few months after the fiesta of 1957, with advice from Rev. Fr. Vicente Urlanda, the people requested from Most Rev. Bishop Alfredo Ma. Obviar for St. Anne Church to have their own priest. The first religious procession was held led by the parochial vicar of Pagbilao, Fr. Severino Salvania, who organized a mass and baptism.

The Glorioso couple soon donated their lot to the future parish priest. Fr. Vicente Urlanda, Curate of Pagbilao, presented to Bishop Obviar, the petition of the people for a regular priest.

The Parish of St. Anne in Malicboy was erected on March 17, 1958 through a decree issued by the late Bishop Alfredo Ma. Obviar D.D. –first Bishop of Lucena. Late Rev. Fr. Severiano G. Salvania was the first Parish Priest.

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Bigger, Sturdier

On 2 July 1960, the corner stone was laid for the new parish church. As years passed, the construction was continuing, and the parish was able to acquire adjacent lots with generous help from parishioners. A bigger and sturdier church, furnished with a marble altar, was built.

The church was completed and blessed on 25 July 1983.

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Increase of Devotees

With the increase of parishioners, including devotees and pilgrims from other areas, the church renovation started in 1993.

St. Joaquin Evangelization Hall (Canteen)

The groundbreaking of the site of St. Joaquin Evangelization Hall was held through the initiative of the parish priest and the PPC President; Efren Mercurio. The hall's construction was realized thru the pledges of the parishioners.

The Blessed Sacrament Chapel

The Blessed Sacrament Chapel as first structure being finished ahead of the main church was blessed by Most Rev. Ruben T. Profugo in the presence of the parishioners and the sponsors led by Fr. Charles Herrera, Parish Priest and Ernie Doblon, PCEA President.

The Lupi

The so-called "Lupi" which means one(1) set of (9) consecutive Tuesday’s novena in honor of St. Anne was officially introduced to the devotees by the Parish Priest. The first Lupi was dated November 30, 1999, to January 25, 2000.

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PHOTO: Opening Rites of the Jubilee Door presided by late Bishop Ruben T. Profugo.

St. Anne Church As A Pilgrim Church of Lucena

Before it was declared as a Diocesan Shrine, St. Anne Church was declared as a "JUBILEE PILGRIM CHURCH OF LUCENA" by Bishop Ruben T. Profugo.

Candle Park

Msgr. Froilan Zalameda, P.C., former parish priest of St. Anne (1976–1983) officiated the ceremonial blessing of St. Anne Candle Park at the left wing of the church.

The Surprise

The church, together with the Evangelization Hall, candle stands, comfort rooms, fencing, patio, and priest's residence, was blessed and consecrated by Bishop Ruben T. Profugo, at the end of the Mass, the parishioners surprised when declared by order of Bishop Ruben T. Profugo, read by Fr. Erwin Aguilar, Vice-Chancellor, the proclamation of St. Anne Church as a Diocesan Shrine.

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PHOTO: Parish Dedication and proclamation as Diocesan Shrine

Belfry Groundbreaking

The groundbreaking ceremony of the site of the proposed St. Anne's Belfry took place through the initiative of the PCEA headed by Teodoro M. Gatchalian, President.

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The Relic of St. Anne

The Relic of St. Anne that was given by the Vatican arrived on July 11, 2004.

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The Relics

On September 5, 2007, the 3 relics of St. Monica, St. Anthony of Padua, and St. Francis of Assisi arrived on the church through the effort of Rev. Fr. Raphael V. Tolentino. On September 9, 2008, the 4th relic; the relic of St. John Ma. Vianney arrived together with the relic of St. Therese of the Child Jesus and St. Augustine.

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Her 50th Anniversary

On 15 March 2008, the St. Anne Parish, under parish priest Rev. Fr. Raphael V. Tolentino, celebrated its 50th anniversary as a parish.

The guest of honor was no less than the President of the Republic of the Philippines; Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. It is a very rare and unusual occasion that the President would grace an event like this.

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PHOTO: President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo with Rev. Fr. Raphael V. Tolentino.

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On 15 February 2009, Rev. Fr. Ruel Abuel arrived and continued the programs left by Fr. Tolentino, such as the flourishing of the Youth of the Parish, which in turn became members of the Parish Youth Ministry, some joined the Music Ministry, Knights of the Altar, Legion of Mary and more.

He also continued the “Sayaw-Parangal Kay Sta. Ana” wherein there is a yearly changing theme, just like one theme where the costumes of the dancers are made from recycled materials.

During Fr. Ruel’s care, the “Kawan ng Galacia” was formed. There also were Leadership training for MSK Leaders.

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With the continuous arrival of devotees and the increase in number of MSKs, the church structure was constantly being improved.

The year 2015 is when Rev. Fr. Joseph T. Estremera arrived at the parish. During his time, the devotion to St. Anne, as well as the stories of how their devotion to her affected their lives improved. He also formed the Cofradia De San Jose, a group of male devotees of St. Joseph.

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PHOTO: Logo of Cofradia de San Jose

He also headed the beautification of the Candle Park, Baptistry, as well as adding the Retablo to the Altar.

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PHOTO: REV. FR. FELIX AYALA JR. during his thanksgiving Mass at St. Anne Parish.

He continued the programs headed by the previous parish priests such as the Lakbay-Dalaw ni Santa Ana to other MSKs, Sayaw-Parangal, Mass Wedding, and Mass Baptism and Confirmation.

Within his time also came another surprise for the people of Malicboy. Rev. Fr. Felix Ayala Jr., who is a grew up in Malicboy, celebrated his thanksgiving mass in the Parish as a newly ordained Priest.

In the year 2020, the COVID-19 Pandemic hit the Philippines and affected millions in the world. To address this situation, the Parish launched an initiative to conduct Livestreaming Masses using social platforms such as Facebook and Youtube, as well as increase engagement in social networking sites like Twitter and Instagram with the goal of spreading the Word of the God towards the faithful and devotees of St. Anne.

On 2021 June 01, Rev. Fr. Severino “Rekto” M. Hernandez was installed as the new Parish Priest and Shrine Rector.

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