BOCAUE, Bulacan, July 21 (PIA) -- President Benigno Aquino III graced Monday the inauguration of Ciudad de Victoria of Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) in Bocaue town which is home of the Philippine Arena- presently the “world’s largest domed indoor structure.”
“Angkop nga po ang pangalan ng lugar na ito—na may kahulugang Lungsod ng Tagumpay—lalo pa’t sinasalamin nito ang mga nakamit na tagumpay ng Iglesia sa nagdaang siglo. Mula po sa pagkakatatag ng Kagalang-galang Felix Manalo hanggang sa patuloy na paglago ng inyo pong kongregasyon, tinitingala ang Iglesia ni Cristo hindi lang sa ating bansa kundi maging sa iba’t ibang panig ng daigdig (This place has a fitting name- which literary means City of Victory- for it mirrors the achievements of the Iglesia in the last century. From its establishment by the honorable Felix Manalo up to the continued growth of the congregation, they look up to Iglesia Ni Cristo not only in the Philippines but in other parts of the world as well),” Aquino told over 55,000 INC members that attended the occasion inside the jam-packed arena.
He added that the 75-hectare complex serves as a concrete example of the exceptional unity manifested by the group throughout the years.
The INC is known as a close-knit religious organization, whose congregation leaders visit their members and actively encourage them to participate in various church activities and other community services.
“Pero batid nating itinayo ang strukturang ito, hindi para makipagpaligsahan. Ipinagawa ito para sa banal at dakilang layuning noon pa man ay pinangarap na ni Ka Eraño Manalo- ang magtaguyod ng espasyo upang maglingkod at ibahagi ang biyaya ng Panginoon sa lokal at pandaigdigang komunidad (But we understand that this structure was built not to compete. It was built for the holy and great cause, which was the dream of Bro. Eraño Manalo- to have a space to serve and share the blessings of God to the local and global community),” Aquino stressed, referring to the late executive minister of INC.
Philippine Arena, whose construction cost over $200 million, was constructed to withstand strong earthquakes and super typhoons.
The design was inspired by the narra and banyan trees and has a dome spanning over 3.6 hectares.
It stands with two other massive structures- the 20,000-seater Philippine Stadium and Philippine Sports Center.
Apart from these, others to be built within the area soon include the Eraño G. Manalo Medical Center and New Era Sports Academy of New Era University.
The development of Ciudad de Victoria is in line with the group’s centennial celebration this year.
Established on July 27, 1914, membership of the INC presently span over 100 countries in all six inhabited continents. (CLJD-PIA 3)