Sto. Domingo Church keeps rich cultural heritage


IMAGE of Our Lady of the Rosary of La Naval, oldest Marian icon in the country, is kept at Sto. Domingo Church in Quezon City. RAFFY LERMA

The Baronial structure, with its mix of modern and Gothic architecture, never fails to attract attention and reverence.

Rightly so, for behind Sto. Domingo Church’s facade of intricately carved panels and stained glass windows lie a treasure trove of the Philippines’ rich cultural heritage and the object of centuries-old devotion, the image of Our Lady of the Rosary of La Naval, the oldest Marian icon in the country.

The La Naval image has been the object of Filipino devotion that dates back to the 16th century, and the icon’s shrine in Quezon City is host to an annual feast that culminates in a procession that draws tens of thousands of devotees.

On Oct. 4, ahead of the feast and coinciding with the traditional enthronement of La Naval, the National Museum will declare Sto. Domingo Church and all its liturgical objects National Cultural Treasures, the highest distinction the government can confer on a cultural property.

The declaration follows Republic Act No. 4846, otherwise known as the Cultural Properties Preservation and Protection Act, which defines “national cultural treasure” as a “unique cultural property found locally, possessing outstanding historical, cultural, artistic and/or scientific value which is highly significant and important to the country and nation.”

Rare distinction

The rare distinction will help Sto. Domingo’s caretakers, the Dominicans, in the preservation and restoration of the church, according to Fr. Guiseppe-Pietro Arsciwals, prior of the Convent of Santo Domingo.

“Funding for preservation and restoration will be more accessible and the government will also grant the church protection in times of calamities and war,” said Fr. Gaspar Sigaya, archivist of the Philippine Dominican Province.

Asking the National Museum to declare the church and its attached entities as cultural treasures was Sigaya’s idea, and he did so in August last year.

To support its application, the convent submitted documents, including a comprehensive coffee-table book titled “The Saga of La Naval: Triumph of a People’s Faith,” which covered the history and the relevance of Marian devotion to the Filipino faith and culture.

The book, edited by Inquirer editor Lito Zulueta, was published by the Dominican Province of the Philippines in 2007 to mark the centennial of the canonical coronation of La Naval, Arsciwals said.

In response, a team from the museum visited the church earlier this year to see if its merits entitled it to become one of the country’s national cultural treasures.

Witnesses to history

Besides their history, the church and the La Naval image have very compelling reasons to get the National Museum’s approval, among them their standing as silent witnesses to riveting, recent events in Philippine history.

Sto. Domingo Church served as the venue for the wake of opposition leader Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr., who was assassinated in 1983, while the Marian icon, carried by the Dominican priests, gave encouragement to the people during the bloodless Edsa People Power Revolution that toppled the dictator Ferdinand Marcos in February 1986.

The 58-year-old church on Quezon Avenue in Quezon City—originally located for four centuries in the old Intramuros in Manila—has also been widely noted for its modern architecture and design by the late José María Zaragoza.

“It is the only church that have no columns in the middle so you will have a clear vision of it [inside],” Arsciwals said in an interview with the Inquirer on Friday.

In his piece in “The Saga of La Naval,” architect and University of Santo Tomas professor Manuel Maximo Lopez del Castillo-Noche described Sto. Domingo as “reminiscent of mission-style architecture, with a fusion of Romanesque articulation and Gothic verticality.”

Adding more value to the church are the eight murals by National Artist Carlos “Botong” Francisco, mounted on the copula, depicting important events in the life of its patron, St. Dominic de Guzman, and the vivid stained-glass windows rendered by Filipino artist Galo Ocampo.

Secret vault

On the choir loft, a 76-year-old pipe organ made in Rosaryhill in Hong Kong is being restored to its grandeur by Diego Cera Organbuilders Inc., custodians of the world-famous Las Piñas bamboo organ.

Somewhere in the vast church complex is a secret vault holding centuries-old ivory icons and wooden images of saints made by Filipino craftsmen; exquisite, gem-studded, age-old crowns; golden Marian robes; and fine jewelry for the Virgin presented by fervent devotees.

The secrecy about the vault makes sense: In October 1762, thieves broke into the Sto. Domingo Church in Intramuros and took some of its rare treasures.

Arsciwals referred the Inquirer to “The Saga of La Naval” for a list and photos of the church’s treasures. The list of jewelry presented by devotees to the Virgin Mary runs for four pages. Among the devotees were members of old, rich families in the country, including the Roxases, Quezons and Madrigals.

Marian jewelry

“While devotees of Our Lady of Manaoag would offer her dresses, it is different in the case of Our Lady of La Naval … they would offer her jewelry,” Arsciwals said.

In the jewelry collection is a locket, described in the La Naval book as “studded with small diamonds, seed pearls and colored gems.” It is believed to have been offered to the Virgin by a certain Ana Rojas, a native of Calumpit, Bulacan, in the 19th century.

Another notable gift is the National Artist medallion, which ardent devotee Nick Joaquin instructed his heirs to donate to the La Naval Virgin before he died in 2004. The medallion has been affixed to the statue’s foot since then.

Stored in the vault, according to the book, are prewar ivory heads and hands for statues of several saints, including St. Dominic, St. Vincent Ferrer, St. Catherine de Ricci, St. Agnes of Montepulciano and St. Antoninus of Florence.

The Sto. Domingo Museum houses other valuable objects—such as centuries-old crucifixes made of gold and silver, rosaries and a tabernacle, all of which had been used in the old Sto. Domingo Church in Intramuros, according to Arsciwals.

Original church, image

The original, Gothic church in Intramuros was built on a piece of land bought by Manila Bishop Domingo de Salazar in 1587. Upon its completion in 1588, a wooden image of La Naval from Mexico was enshrined there and it would stay there for 300 years.

The church was relocated to Quezon City and inaugurated in 1954 after the fifth Sto. Domingo Church in Intramuros was destroyed in the Battle of Manila in 1945.

But the focal point of the extraordinary distinction from the National Museum. Arsciwals said, is the storied image of La Naval, which was carved from ivory by a Chinese artisan commissioned by Governor General Luis Perez Dasmariñas in the 1590s.

“This is the first ivory image carved in the Philippines; that’s why it is very historic,” Arsciwals said.

All pre-1981

With a controversy involving illegal ivory trade in the Philippines making the headlines, Arsciwals quickly added that all ivory icons in the church had been in existence long before the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES) imposed a ban on international trade in ivory in 1981.

The devotion to La Naval flourished after she was believed to have helped the ill-equipped Filipino and Spanish armada repel the Dutch invasion of Manila in 1646.

“The Virgin Mary is significant to the Filipino culture because, in the middle of all uncertainties, there is something that you’re holding on to and that is faith in God, as what she showed in her life,” Arsciwals said.

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  • Cruxofthematter

    Psalm 115
    Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God?
    But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.
    Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men’s hands.
    They have mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not:
    They have ears, but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not:
    They have hands, but they handle not: feet have they, but they walk not: neither speak they through their throat.
    They that make them are like unto them; so is every one that trusteth in them.

  • Cruxofthematter

    Xrisp: If bible memory is for elation or show-off, I would have lived in vain, that is the flimsiest reason to put God’s word into the heart. Why we do, read Psa. 119:11. Why thousands? Quite simple. The bible teaches the church is LOCAL. Of which I cannot divulge more just to say that I have read Church history from the Catholic viewpoint and the correct viewpoint and even others’ viewpoints. History is sometimes written by those who have power to write it. But the Bible in itself is not just history, therein is recorded the Words of God. Where else? Marvel comics? The missal? Nowhere else. How many times are these written in the Bible “Thus saith the Lord”, and this “The Lord hath spoken” and this “Hear ye the Word of the Lord”. Everywhere. Say, have you ever read even one of these? If God has recorded what He said, shouldn’t mortal man listen and take heed? So many people start criticizing it, condemning it, without even having read John chapter 1.

    • Petrus_Romanus

      2 Timothy 3:16-17
      “16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

      Acts 17
      “10 As soon as it was night, the believers sent Paul and Silas away to Berea. On arriving there, they went to the Jewish synagogue. 11 Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. 12 As a result, many of them believed, as did also a number of prominent Greek women and many Greek men.”

      Matthew 24 (Prophecies on the End Times)
      “4 Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. 6 You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 7 Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places.8 All these are the beginning of birth pains.9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death,and you will be hated by all nations because of me. 10 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13 but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.”

    • xrisp

      Ok thank you brother for having exchnaged viewpoints here. God bless you!

      • Cruxofthematter

        Amen, likewise.

  • Cruxofthematter

    “This baronial structure must be a STRUCTURE made of EXQUISITE MATERIALS which is a mix of modern and Gothic architecture. This structure attracts REVERENCE, the object of Filipino devotion back to the 16th century. While devotees of Our Lady of Manaoag would OFFER her dresses, it is
    different in the case of Our Lady of La Naval, they would offer her

    Open your eyes. Seek the true and living God, while He yet may be found. Flee from idolatry.

  • jin2012

    Proof of God is in prophecy.

    There are 2000 prophecies out of 2500 that have already been fulfilled.  Some of them in the last 100 years.

    The Book of Isaiah was written in ~700BC.  The oldest copy mankind has is dated ~300-120BC thanks to the Dead Sea Scrolls.

    9:6-7 [born as a human male]
    7:14 [born of a virgin]
    37:31 [from the House of Judah]
    11:1-10 [from the root and stump of Jesse]
    16:5 [from the House of David]
    9:1-2 [from Nazareth of Galilee]
    49:6, 42:1-6 [mission included the Gentiles]
    29:18, 35:5-6 [ministry included miraculous healings]
    61:1-2 [ministry would deliver spiritual captives]
    53:3 [despised and rejected by men]
    49:7 [hated without cause]

    So what are the odds of ALL that (and more) coming true at the right time and place in ONE man?

    Next the Atheist will say, even Christ never existed.  

    The Sanhedrin executed Jesus.  He is recorded in the Talmud.  Sanhedrin 43a – “Eve of Passover, Yeshua was hanged etc..”  The Talmud also refers to 5 disciples of Christ, it states how old he was when he died, and how the Romans got involved.  So the question to the Atheist is:  Why would the Sanhedrin document a “mythical” enemy? That’s like saying the CIA is documenting mythical enemies rather than real terrorists.

    Thallus wrote about the execution of Jesus, his writings date up to 52AD.

    Flavius Josephus, a member of the Pharisees and court historian to Emperor Vespasian made references to Pilate, Caiphas, Jesus, James – brother of Jesus.  So why would he risk the ire of the emperor in reporting several mythical figures?

    Artifacts (Physical evidence):  There is Pilate’s Stone, the Ossuary of James that states:  James – Son of Joseph, Brother of Jesus. There is also the Ossuary of Caiphas, where his body was found including coins dated to 42AD.   

    Tacitus wrote about the burning of Jerusalem by the Romans in 70AD.

    Jesus prophesied about the destruction of Jerusalem in Matthew 24.  Myths do not prophecy.

    Reader’s Digest, Encyclopedia Brittanica lists Christ as FACT.  Even Einstein believed Jesus Christ existed.

    Finally, to the Atheist, name me one movement in history that has 100,000 followers and has survived for at least 300 years without a real leader.

    • Alexander Aamproz

      you have swallowed and digest a crucifix, doctors can’t do anything for you.
      “God’s” have abandoned the Archipelago since Magellan.

      Every religion is the next of a former one,
      curiously it’s vanishing from Europe without replacement.

      Maintaining empty Churches is a problem, 
      the ugly and useless one are erased to give room for a more convenient use.

      Did Philippines already replaced the fake text book’s ?
      Do those disgusting’s books where chosen by God or by the “elites”,
      who wanted to entertain ignorances ? 
      Clergy never complain nor supported Mr. Go who denounced it !
      It showed some guilt…

      I remember the time when National Bookstore had only junk food cooking book’s
      and religious on janitor’s level, plus some coffee table one.

      Book’s in the Philippines are still the best place to hide money,
      no risque s to be open…

      • GKLer

        Nothing you just wrote disproves, addresses or answers the questions above. 

        OBVIOUSLY, you haven’t looked up the meaning of “fallacies” such as red herring and ad hominems. It is taught in K+12 schools.

        What you perceive as “abandonment” by God, arises from lack of understanding or basic knowledge of why God allowed the nations to rule themselves (ie, known as the Times of the Nations or Times of the Beast which is a limited period of time – it’s somewhere there in the Bible. That’s the same question as: Why does God allow suffering – yes it’s in the Bible, try reading the book.

      • Alexander Aamproz

        Your language use to be understandable hundreds years ago in Europe, but still valid today only in da Philippines, Africa, Russia and remote places like the Meddle West(deep America), already-not anymore in Brazil.

      • GKLer

        You like travelling, that’s great.  Do travel some more.

      • Alexander Aamproz

        Already went and lived in more than 60 countries…

        one of my favorite places was the Philippines, north to south to the most remotes barrio’s. 
        With the poorest and the wealthiest, have many good friends from the very top to the poor of the poorest.
        I discover in this country how bad the Clergy could be with the sequel,s and bad faith of the christian colonization. 
        Every Christian should feel ashamed of what was done to the Filipinos since Magellan.

        Friars attitudes was just criminal of the worst kind, when the US order them to sell their stollen land’s, they gave them for a song to their relatives, today “elites” is’n it ?
        Contributing actively to the American Filipino genocide to protect their asset’s.

        Today Clergy is still sitting by the “elites”, Ampatuan, Enrile or Arroyo style.

        Oh my God ! is all I can say in front such amazing abuses.

      • Petrus_Romanus

        I wouldn’t worry about that too much.   God will take care of that in due time. Those crimes you speak off…all here in this prophecy to be fulfilled:

        Revelation 18
        4 Then I heard another voice from heaven say: “Come out of her, my people, so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues; 5for her sins are piled up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes.

      • GKLer

        I have to give you some more news, since you seem upset about a lot of things.

        Magellan died a while back.

  • Cruxofthematter

    Alex, that’s the end of substance, good day. Again, take my advice please, start reading the book of John one chapter at a time.

  • Cruxofthematter

    Petrus, no one can prevent the translation to any other language from the KJV. Who would be interested in diluting the truth of God’s Word and introduce a version that would be different from the Received Text, citing “better accuracy”, “more ease in reading”? Would it not come from the enemy of the gospel who wants nothing more than to insert a small error here and there and look how a compilation of small errors have been crafted into one huge error by introducing a “better translation” which is nothing but a changed translation? How did you think homosexuality become acceptable in many “Christian” groups? Never from the KJV.

    • Petrus_Romanus

      On homosexuality – the Bible is very clear on this…

      1 Corinthians 6
      Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders 10nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

      However, it can be noted that Jesus Christ did not explicitly say anything about this.
      He was explicit about this:  “Love thy neighbor as yourself”.  
      …and neither should we judge our neighbors – that’s up to Jesus Christ.

      Next, my post just disappeared. So I will try to recreate it.

      English was actually the peasant’s common language. Latin was used by the Church (because the Western Roman Empire spoke Latin. French was the language of the rich and elite.

      English Bibles that used the Textus Receptus

      1. Bishop’s Bible 1568
      2. Geneva Bible 1560
      3. KJV 1611 (also used Masoretic Text, Tyndale 1526 NT, Erasmus MS, Bezae 1598)
      4. Quaker Bible 1764
      5. YLT 1862
      6. Julia Smith Parker Translation 1876

      There are modern Bibles that use also use Textus Receptus, 1971-2012

      English Bibles 1200s (13th Century) to KJV to 1800s (19th Century)

      1. Wycliff 1380, 1388. Wycliffe used Latin Vulgate. He was branded a heretic for translating the Bible into English. His remains were burned 40 years after he died, and the ashes scattered into the river.
      2. Tyndale 1530. Tyndale was executed and burned for translating the Bible into English.
      3. Coverdale Bible 1535. First complete Bible in English which continued Tyndale’s work.
      4. Matthew’s Bible 1537. Completed Tyndale’s work.
      5. Taverner’s Bible 1539. A minor revision of Matthew’s Bible.
      6. Geneva Bible 1557, 1560. Unauthorized. First English Bible with OT translated from Hebrew text. Most popular Bible until KJV.
      7. Bishop’s Bible 1568. Second Authorized Bible in English.
      8. DRB 1582, 1610. First Roman Catholic Bible translated to English based on Vg.

      9. Authorized KJV 1611 (Based on Masoretic Text, Textus Receptus, Tyndale 1526 NT, Erasmus MS, Bezae 1598). The prior English Bibles likely were used as a reference.

      10. DRB 1752
      11. Quaker Bible 1764
      12. Thomson’s Translation 1808
      13. Webster’s Revision 1833
      14. YLT 1862
      15. Julia Smith Parker Translation 1876
      16. RV 1885
      17. Darby 1890

      The Roman Catholic Church BURNED Bibles in English, French, Spanish, German etc… for 600 years from the 1200s to 1800s

      300 AD Rome (Emperor Diocletian) started burning Bibles and their Believers. However Emperor Constantine put a stop to this.

      1184 Synod of Verona – Declared heretics be burned (Bible groups, Catholics who questioned the power of the pope).

      1199 Pope Innocent III – Burned French Bibles, and did not permit the people to have more.

      1203 – 1808 50+ million people are estimated to have been murdered and tortured by the RC Inquisition for crimes including possession and reading the Bible in English, French, Spanish, German etc.

      1208 – 1226 The RC army was sent to kill Albigenesian Christians.

      1215 Lateran Council declared heretics be burned and property taken.

      1229 The RC Inquisition executed and confiscated the property of 32000 Albigensian Christians in Toulouse France.

      1229 Canon 14 – Church Council of Toulouse – We prohibit the laity to have OT and NT, and their translation of these.

      1234 Pope Gregory IX ordered Bible burning.

      1234 Council of Tarragona – No one may possess OT and NT, you must turn them over to the local bishop with 8 days, so that they may be burned.

      1408 Synod of Oxford – Declared “heresy” to posses an unauthorized English Bible (a Bible not approved by the Roman Catholic Church).

      1559 Pope Pius IV – Index of Trent 1559 – Index of Librorum Prohibitorum – Whoever reads or has a translation cannot be absolved from his sins until he turns in his Bible. All unauthorized Bible are forbidden.

      1525 6000 Tyndale NT burned.

      1600 10000 Bible burned by order of Ferdinand II.

      1713 Pope Clement II – Condemned reading the Bible.

      1844 Pope Gregory – Declared those favoring Bible societies were guilty of the greatest crime against God and Church.

      On a side note:

      1. Hitler and the Nazis tried to remove the OT from the Bible to make it fit Nazi doctrines. The Nazis were destroyed.
      2. Communism included a primary goal of eradicating the Bible and Christianity – Communism collapsed with the USSR.
      3. On the Roman Catholic Church for its many other sins not listed here – refer to the prophecy in Revelation 18.

      Final comments.

      Clearly s a t a n tried to suppress God’s message to us. He failed. It is also clear that the KJV did not have a monopoly on being burned. Bibles available during the 1200s to 1800s were burned by the Roman Catholic Church, including those who read and possessed them. Since the 1800s, it is estimated that 2-5 billion Bibles have been/or are in circulation – now in 2000+ different languages. KJV in English translation is one those.

      Clearly God is speaking to us in billions of ways today and the prophecies in Matthew 24 are being fulfilled.

      Matthew 24 (Jesus speaks)
      14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

      It is a continuation of the work done by the disciples who were blessed by the Spirit to speak in many different tongues (Acts 2)

      Lastly, it is only logical to use the oldest manuscripts available to us today to verify what we do have. The oldest are the ones closest to the originals. We are finding these today, willed by God, because as you can see what the Roman Catholic Church did, it is now the right time, not during the the last 700+ years. When the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered – for sure – you know who was trying to suppress them – for fear they might contain verses that do not belong there – they failed.

      God will not permit his words to be corrupted. That is a guarantee, and you can clearly see from its history, the Bible has more than survived despite the powerful enemy trying to suppress it. It is unstoppable – with God behind it.

  • Cruxofthematter

    Why are you judging that I am judging? If Jesus did not say explicitly about worshipping Mary, does it mean He condoned it? 2 Tim.2:15.
    Who says I do not love my neighbor? Matthew 7. Be careful.

    Does one care if English was considered the peasant’s language? And why are you and governments are using it now as a defacto standard. Learn more.

    Church elites? Like the Nicolaitans? Learn more.

    Again, which Bible is in extensive use today after 401 years and counting and still is a bestselling or best distributed (many are distributed free, no copyright). Which Bible is always under attack and has been attempted to be discredited and yet has proved to help Christians in their memory verses and Christian growth?

    • Petrus_Romanus

      If you take the time to read my post carefully to you below, A – F, you already have my answers from the questions you have been asking, and I think you are completely missing the point I am making.   Neither did I judge you, so it seems you did not comprehend my post at all.

      You really missed my point – I stated one fact – English was the peasant’s language 400 years ago. Period. You need to understand what that meant when people started to create Bibles from Latin, German, Hebrew, Greek into English.

      You are introducing an irrelevant point called “red herring” into the discussion by telling me what English is in the present and why I am using it, and the governments. What’s that got to do with all this? If you want to go off topic – Fact is Chinese is spoken a lot more in the world. Should all Bibles be in Chinese then?

      If you believe KJV should be the only bible out there then you are absolutely mistaken – for reasons I have already mentioned. 

      The short version:


      KJV isn’t the “Original Bible”.

      KJV isn’t the only Bible that was burned and attacked during the 600 year Bible burning by the RCC.

      KJV  isn’t the only Bible that used Textus Receptus.  In fact it used several sources including Tyndale NT, Erasmus, Masoretic Text.

      KJV wasn’t the only English Bible. 

      KJV wasn’t the oldest or the first English Bible.

      KJV is just one more translation among many others. 

      All translations have issues and are not perfect. Why do you seem to think KJV is??

      Any Bible that did not restore God’s Holy Name ~7000 times is far from perfect.

      KJV restored the Holy Name only seven times.

      • Cruxofthematter

        Petrus, put in all the ANTIs about the KJV and one thing still stand – it is 401 years old today and next year will be 402 and still to be the widest in circulation, praise God who protects it and the remnant of true believers who memorize and use it. PERIOD.

        Saying what is it was Chinese and English is a red herring, a fallacious premise, a hypothesis to create a diversion in matters of debate – and will not have any merit at all, it didn’t it isn’t it never was and never will be, and drop the fallacy. PERIOD.

        You stick to your versions and see you next year and hopefully 10 years from now and check your versions, I will continue to check with my KJV which would have been 411 years old.

        That is the single, most undaunted FACT that the KJV is protected by none other, but God himself. Your other propositions are moot and academic. And maybe you will not believe me now, but if 10 years is enough for you, let us continue this then. For now, I remain. Carry on with your beliefs and good reading…


      • Petrus_Romanus

        My “beliefs” are irrelevant.  I am merely stating historical facts that stand on their own.  

        The Latin Vulgate was the Bible for 1120++ years. It is now 1632 years old – it is still in use today as a source.  Are you believing that God did not protect that version as well?

        The Bible was often translated into the “leading” language of the time – THAT helped ensure its survival and spread.  English wasn’t the leading language during the time of Christ in Israel.  It did become Greek – which help spread the Word to the rest of the Greek speaking world. Later it became Latin – which help spread the Word to the rest of the Western Roman Empire. 

        Now that English is -a- primary language, and that there is no burning of Bibles, many English bibles using much older sources (more pure) are spreading like fire.

        The sources protected by God are thousands of years old -not- merely 400 years – and still used today, some were used also by KJV as a source.

        The “version” that God has protected include the list below, which the KJV and many many many other Bibles are translated from.  They are the primary existing sources -not- the English KJV which is a translation from some of these.

        By OLDEST and still existing -sources- today:

        400BC Dead Sea Scrolls – Entire book of Isaiah, and portions of every other OT book except Esther.  Discovered in caves and excavations in 1947-1956.

        Greek Septuagint (LXX) – Hebrew translated into Greek
        100-400AD Chester Beatty Papyri – 9 OT book in Greek Septuagint.
        350AD Codex Sinaiticus – Entire OT in Greek Septuagint.
        350AD Codex Vaticanus – Entire OT in Greek Septuagint.

        Over 5600 fragments of Greek manuscripts of the NT…
        125AD p52 – a portion of John 18
        200AD Bodmer p66 – large portion of John.
        200AD Chester Beatty p46 – Pauline Epistles and Hebrews.
        225AD Bodmer P75 – John and Luke.
        250AD Chester Beatty p45 – portions of 4 Gospels and Acts
        350AD Codex Sinaiticus discovered in Mt. Sinai in 1856
        350AD Codex Vaticanus – almost complete NT, and in the Vatican Library since 1475AD

        300AD Old Syriac – NT from Greek into Syriac
        300AD Coptic Version – 4 Egyptian dialects

        380AD Latin Vulgate – Jerome translated in Latin OT from Hebrew, Latin NT from Greek.  This became the Bible of the Western Church until 1500AD 

        400AD Geniza fragments – portions of OT in Hebrew and Aramaic discovered in 1947 in Cairo Egypt. 

        400AD Codex Bezae – Gospels and Acts in Greek and Latin

        700-950AD Masoretic Hebrew Text – Ben Asher Manuscripts – Six generations of a family that made copies of the OT using Masoretic Hebrew Text.  Such as the:
        950AD Alepo Codex – Complete OT. 1/4 of this was destroyed in 1947 anti-Jewish riots.
        1008AD Codex Leningradensis – Complete OT in Hebrew copied by the last member of the Ben-Asher family in 1008AD.

        . . . . . . .

        1380 AD First English translation by Wycliffe from the Latin Vulgate.  This was a translation from a translation, since Wycliffe didn’t speak Hebrew or Greek.

        1456AD Gutenberg – First printed Bible in Latin.

        1514AD Textus Receptus – Greek NT printed for first time by Erasmus.  He based his Greek NT from only 5 Greek manuscripts which date only as far back as the 12th Century.  This work including revisions became known as the Textus Receptus.  The KJV used this a source among other sources.

        1522AD Polygot Bible – OT in Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, Latin.  NT in Latin and Greek.  Erasmus used this to revise his NT later.  Tyndale used  this to translate the OT into English. 

        1611AD KJV – English translation and used Textus Receptus as -one- of the sources.  It also used Masoretic Text, Latin Vulgate, Septuagint, Codex Bezae, Erasmus, Tyndale English NT, etc..

        . . . . . . .

        1968AD United Bible Societies – Greek NT from oldest Greek manuscripts dating 175AD.  This Greek NT is used by NASV and NIV.

        1971AD NASV – uses –older– Hebrew and Greek manuscripts now available that were not available at the time of KJV.

        1983AD NIV – uses –older– manuscripts not available during the time of KJV.

        Novum Testamentum Graece
        Nestle-Aland Text
        Samaritan Pentateuch

        This list is far from complete.  What it does show – is that the Bible has been under attack for a very long time. It took a lot of hits, people died for their work, but we do have it today.

        If you want to be blind to the history of how you and I got the Bible, that’s your decision.  It is your decision to continue to believe the KJV should be the only Bible out there. Your thoughts are not in line with what God has clearly done to get us and the rest of the non-English world the Bible in the last 6000 years.

        Do you even think no one should have a Bible except starting 1611AD?  – you will sound like the Bishops and Popes who banned the Bible for 600 years. The only Bible was the Latin Vulgate to them. The KJV you are using is based on 1769-  a revision from 1611. It isn’t 400 years old.

        The Bible Society of the United Kingdom estimates between 1816 to 1975, 2.5 billion Bibles have been printed. In 1992, they estimate 6 billion. Worldwide sales are about 100 million per year. In 2007, the estimate is 7.5 billion in 2370 languages. Not including electronic versions. The average American household has 4 Bibles.

        So tell me, how many percent do you think the KJV is out of all that?

        God is making all this happen and KJV is part of it – not entirely it.

        By the way, I am not ANTI KJV. You probably think I am based on how you are comprehending my post.

  • Leo Christian Sixwillfix Villa

    The statue of Our Lady of the Rosary La Naval de Manila is NOT the OLDEST Marian statue in the Philippines. The oldest Marian statue in the Philippines is the Nuestra Senora de Guia, the image of Mama Mary enshrined in Ermita church.

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