Ever wonder why our Capuchin brothers are taking care of two parishes in close proximity in Quezon City? Then, read on to know more of historical facts and the special bond that we will forever share with our nearby sister Parish. Special thanks to Mark Titong and Dennis & Lara Lara for their contributions. You may also read a related topic on the Universal Doctor of the Church, St. Therese of Lisieux here : http://www.nsollqc.com/2013/10/01/feast-day-of-st-therese-of-the-child-jesus/
1938-1939. The Araneta family offered the Capuchins a sizable portion of land in Sta. Mesa Heights Subdivision with the following conditions: By 1957, complete construction of a big beautiful Church similar to the Church of Lourdes in Intramuros; build a convent or a Sunday School.
1941. Fr. Florencio of Lezaun, accepted the donation.
March 21, 1942. His Eminence Michael O’Doherty, Archbishop of Manila, created a new Parish: STA. TERESITA DEL NIÑO JESUS and entrusted this to the Capuchin Friars. The new parish was bounded on the North by Del Monte Avenue; on the West by A. Bonifacio, Blumentritt and the railroad until Quezon Boulevard (España Blvd); on the South by Quezon Blvd (España Blvd); from the Railroad Crossing to E. Rodriguez on the East by the San Juan River up to Quezon Blvd or Avenue along Araneta Avenue. Meanwhile the Capuchins started to celebrate Sunday Masses at the offices of the Aranetas located on Mayon Street (between Dapitan and Piy Margal Streets) until the Superior decided to construct a simple temporary church in the two small lots on Mayon Street.
March 28, 1942. His Eminence Miguel O’Doherty issued a decree establishing the Parish dedicated to Santa Teresita del Nino Jesus united “pleno jure” to the Convent and the Church to be built by the Capuchins.
September 1942. The lot on which the Church stood was sold by Gregorio Araneta, Inc. to the Capuchins for One Peso.
October 25, 1942. The inauguration of the small Church on Mayon street between Dapitan ang Piy Margal Streets took place. The side walls and façade were constructed from bricks quarried from Intramuros, recycled materials taken from debris of the ruined Sto. Domingo Church due to bombing. The roof was makeshift, made from scrap salvaged materials available at that time. Fr. Fernando Erasun was the first Parish Priest.
February 1946. On property donated by the Tuason family, the construction of the Convent fronting Kanlaon Street commenced.
October 1946. Although built from second hand materials, the Convent was finally inaugurated. It satisfied urgent housing needs for the priests, served as lodgings for the Superior and became the Mother House for guests, which became necessary due to the devastation of Intramuros.
1946-1951. Sta. Teresita Parish Church became the center of pastoral activities. Construction of the big Church situated at the corner of Kanlaon and Retiro Streets commenced.
May 1945-1951. The Chapel on Mayon Street became the sanctuary of the images of Our Lady of Lourdes temporarily housed at the University of Santo Tomas, because the Lourdes Church in Intramuros was destroyed during the liberation of Manila.
February 10, 1951. The images of Our Lady of Lourdes were transferred to their new home in the new Church along Retiro Street.
August 15, 1951. Inauguration of the seat of Sta. Teresita Parish, which was more popularly known as Lourdes Church because of the enshrined statue of Our Lady of Lourdes.
1951-1977. The Chapel at Mayon Street remained active as an affiliate where all sacraments were administered but records were forwarded and kept at the main office in Retiro. All the priests at Sta. Teresita were officially assistants of the Parish Priest of Lourdes.
July 1976. The Vice-Province of the Capuchin Order accepted the proposal of Fr. Joaquin Cia, OFMCap to build a new church and convent to replace the old structure due to burgeoning population of the developing area which necessitated a bigger church.
October 1976. Immediately after the feast of St. Therese, the chapel and the convent were demolished to make way for the construction of a bigger edifice. Masses were held at the Barangay Park to accommodate the wishes of parishioners who could not go to Lourdes Church to hear Mass.
August 23, 1977. While construction was still ongoing, Fr. Mateo Goldaraz, OFMCap and Fr. Juan Cruz Gaston, OFMCap made a petition to His Eminence Jaime Cardinal Sin, Archbishop of Manila for the division of Sta. Teresita Parish into two because the population had increased greatly and there were two churches in the same area, one housing the image of Our Lady of Lourdes and another dedicated to St. Therese.
Cardinal Sin granted the petition on the same day and established the new Sta. Teresita del Nino Jesus principally centered in the Church at 43 Kanlaon Street, Sta. Mesa Heights, Quezon City and named St. Therese of Lisieux as patron of the new parish.
October 2, 1977. Inauguration of a new three storey edifice with mezzanine and gymnasium. This date also marks the installation of Fr. Juan Cruz Gaston, OFMCap as the first parish priest of Sta. Teresita which had a population of 20,000.
January 1980 –
September 1981. The new convent other than housing the curia became the residence of the Contemplative Capuchin Sister (Clarisas Capuchinas) before they transferred to Lipa City, Batangas.
May 1982 – Immediately after the elective chapter, Fr. Artemio Raymundo, OFMCap, the first Filipino Vice Provincial established his residence here with some other offices. This date also marks the establishments of the Capuchin Curia when the Philippines became an independent Province of the Capuchin Order.
1984. The Capuchin friars of Sta. Teresita finally started a fraternity of the Secular Franciscan Order (SFO) in the parish which is also known as Third Order of Saint Francis under the Spiritual Direction of Fr. Juan Cruz Gaston, OFMCap.
December 2, 1984. Celebration of the first children’s Mass.
October 29, 1986. The first Youth Mass was held, celebrated by Fr. Nelson Capili, OFMCap.
April 25, 1987. Launching of the first “Search for Little Rose and Little Prince Charming of Sta. Teresita.”
May 30, 1987. Perpetual Profession of Bro. Aurelio Cagande, OFMCap which was held at the parish.
February 17, 1996. The two relics of St. Anthony of Padua (fragment of vocal cord, and smallest rib bone) arrived at our Parish.
January 2008. For the second time, the relic of our Patroness was brought here in our parish.
For more information about Sta. Teresita Parish, you may visit their facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/sta.teresitaparish