The History of St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows Parish, Marikina Heights
(A Foundation of A Vision)
Marikina Heights community started its Sunday masses way back in 1982 with the Blessed Virgin Mary as its Patron Saint. The Barangay Government, then under the administration of Harry Singh, spearheaded the move for the depressed areas of the community.
In 1985, through the initiative of the late past Grand Knight Fortunato Sta. Ana and Rufino “Jun” Policarpio, Jr. the Marikina Heights Mini-Pastoral Council, under the guidance of St. Paul of the Cross Parish, was organized. Mr. Rufino Policarpio, Jr. was its first President. It utilized the Barangay’s multi-purpose building as its chapel where masses were held every 8:00 am and 5:00 pm every Sunday. It was also through the untiring efforts and dedication of Johnny and Zeny Cunanan that liturgical services for the community were made available with the Pag-ibig Choir providing beautiful spiritual music during the masses. Subsequent elections of officers followed with Ely Sebuguero, Rene Martirez and Rori Cruz as successive Presidents.
The Knights of Columbus Council 9160 and the Barangay Government of Marikina Heights, with the Honorable Kap. Raul Taytayan at the helm, worked hand-in-hand with the Mini-Pastoral Council in its activities like the annual free medical and dental missions. Both have been very supportive in the concerns of the Council particularly in its dream of acquiring a lot on which the chapel of the Blessed Virgin Mary can be built with the vision that someday Marikina Heights will become a PARISH.
And it was in February 27, 2004 that this dream was realized – Marikina Heights was decreed a new Parish in the Diocese of Antipolo, named St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows, under the supervision and guidance of the Congregation of the Passion or Passionist Community with its superior that time, Rev. Fr. Pol Plaza, CP. It was also in February 2, 2004 that the community welcomed Rev. Fr. Willy F. Estraza, CP as the Parish Priest and Rev. Fr. Ferdie Dulong, CP as his vicar.
It was on the day of February 27, 2004 that Bishop Gabriel V. Reyes, DD officially declared the Canonical Erection of the Parish and at the same time the installation of Rev. Fr. Willy F. Estraza, CP as the Parish Priest and also the Feast day of its Patron Saint, St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows, three events in one celebration.
Presently, liturgical services are held at the temporary church building on the newly-acquired lot at the corner of East Drive and Narra Streets.
The dream of the construction of the church building will soon be realized if we can already acquire sufficient star-up funds for this purpose. So, let’s all pray together as one family of God for the realization of this dream – a PARISH CHURCH.