Mother of All Asia – Tower of Peace

The Mother of All Asia–Tower of Peace is a monument shrine dedicated to the Virgin Mary as a symbol of unity and peace in Asia and the whole world. It is located at the center of the eight-hectare pilgrimage site called Montemaria International Pilgrimage & Conference Center in Sitio Montemaria, Barangay Pagkilatan, Batangas City, Philippines. It is the world's tallest statue of the Virgin Mary at 98.15 m (322.0 ft) which includes the plinth/building it stands on.

The construction of a statue of the Virgin Mary and pilgrimage site at the Montemaria development in Batangas City was originally planned and pursued by the Mary Mother of the Poor Foundation (MMP) led by Catholic priest Fernando Suarez.[1] Suarez got the idea of developing a pilgrimage site from Hermilando Mandanas, a local politician and acquaintance whom he met in 2006, where the priest could perform his faith healing work. Mandanas' company, Abacore Capital Holdings, Inc., donated the five-hectare land in Barangay Pagkilatan where the statue and the proposed pilgrimage site would stand, which would later be called Montemaria.[2]

Initially, progress for the project was made in 2009 after Suarez's foundation raised {₱200 million. But in the following year, the project was later put on hold after Suarez moved to Cavite, where San Miguel Corporation offered him a 33-hectare land in the town of Alfonso where he could set up a bigger pilgrimage site. Cited as the one responsible for building a statue of the Virgin Mary at Montemaria, Mandanas continued the project. They established the Montemaria Asia Pilgrims Inc. (MAPI) to help him manage the project's development. The property where the statue would stand was later set for donation to MAPI but such plans were canceled and the land was donated to the Archdiocese of Lipa instead. At the time, the statue which had its face and hands already complete became known as the "Mary Mother of All Asia".[2]

Construction work for the statue began in 2014[3] and was completed by 2021.[4] It is planned to be inaugurated as part of the 500th anniversary of the introduction of Christianity in the Philippines but the COVID-19 pandemic has stalled such plans.[4]

^ "Shrine at Montemaria, Batangas, Philippines". The Philippine Reporter. July 16, 2009. Archived from the original on February 13, 2019. Retrieved October 14, 2021. ^ a b Tulfo, Ramon (March 8, 2014). "Another Montemaria shrine rising in Batangas City". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved November 1, 2018. ^ "300 ft Virgin Mary statue stands tall in Batangas". The Filipino Times. February 14, 2018. Retrieved November 1, 2018. ^ a b Mauro, JP (May 6, 2021). "Philippines finishes construction of largest Marian statue in the world". Aleteia. Aleteia SAS. Retrieved October 14, 2021.
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