500 years of Christianity in PH: Harmonizing two narratives
Manila Bulletin|April 18, 2021
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic moved back the commemoration of 500 years of Christianity by a year. Instead of a culmination, what was marked last Easter Sunday was the start of year-long activities. Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma pointed out that there are two important milestones:

The first mass in Limasawa, Leyte on March 16, 1521, and the first baptism in Cebu on April 14, 1521. Among the first to be baptized were Rajah Humabon and his wife Hara Humamay who were gifted by Magellan with an image of the Sto. Niño that has become one of the most popular icons of Filipino Christianity.

The other narrative focuses on the battle of Mactan in which the Portuguese explorer Fernão de Magalhães (also known as Fernando de Magallanes or Ferdinand Magellan) was killed by Datu Lapu Lapu. Magellan died at age 41 with the distinction of having led the first circumnavigation of the world.

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