Press Release
October 18, 2012


Senate President Pro Tempore Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada will join the official Philippine delegation and the Filipino community in Rome to attend the canonization rites of Blessed Pedro Calungsod on October 21.

Blessed Calungsod, young Visayan catechist and the second Filipino saint following San Lorenzo Ruiz, will be canonized by Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday at St. Peter's Square in Vatican City.

The Philippine contingent is headed by Vice President Jejomar Binay.

According to a news report from the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), around 5,000 pilgrims from the Philippines are headed to Rome to attend the canonization rites.

Records from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and Philippine Embassy in Rome also show that Italy is home to an estimated 114,000 Filipino migrant workers.

"I am privileged to be part of the delegation and to personally witness this momentous event when the Catholic Church honors the life, martyrdom and faithful devotion of a fellow Filipino. For me, the occasion symbolizes the unyielding faith of the Filipino people despite the difficulties," Sen. Estrada shares.

Sen. Estrada recalls that it is during the term of his father, former President Joseph Estrada, when Blessed Pedro Calungsod was beatified by Pope John Paul II on March 2000. Former First Lady Loi Estrada was then the head of the Philippine delegation to Rome and hosted a beatification dinner for the bishops and members of the delegation.

Sen. Estrada will be joined by his mother, former Senator Loi Estrada, wife Precy Ejercito and their children, and sister Jacqueline Lopez.

They are also set to attend the Votive Mass of St. Pedro Calungsod in St. Peter's Basilica on Thanksgiving Day on October 22, to be presided by Cebu Archbishop Emeritus Ricardo Cardinal Vidal.

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