BALANGA City: Pope Francis has conferred the revered title Basilica Minore or Minor Basilica to the Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary Parish Church in Orani, Bataan, Bishop Ruperto Santos said Tuesday.
The title is a distinct privilege given by the Pope and approved by the Vatican Sacred Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.
The Decree dated Sept. 10, 2019 was transmitted to the Diocese of Balanga only recently.
“The Pope’s blessing and gift to the Diocese of Balanga made the Orani church the first Minor Basilica in Bataan and the 16th in the country,” Santos said.
Among the minor basilicas in the country are the Minor Basiilica Black Nazarene in Quiapo, Manila and the Minor Basilica of Santo Niño in Cebu City.
The Virgen Milagrosa del Rosario is the Patron Saint of Orani. The church has a museum where the clothes and crowns worn by the Image of the Virgin Mary are displayed and preserved.
The Church of Orani is 309 years old, while the Image of the Miraculous Virgin is believed to be 303 years old and is significant to countless devotees.