03/31/2023, 18.00
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University of Santo Tomas gifted microfilms of four centuries of Philippine parish records

The Bishops’ Conference has entrusted the records to the university to ensure that they are available to researchers and scholars. The meticulous recorded information includes baptisms, weddings, and funerals from the early 17th century to the present.

Manila (AsiaNews) – The Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has turned over four centuries’ worth of microfilm copies of Catholic parish records from across the country.to the University of Santo Tomas (UST) in Manila, the oldest Catholic university in Asia, founded by the Dominicans in 1611.

The microfilms contain records of baptisms, confirmations, weddings and funerals from the early 1600s to the present and will now be available to researchers.

Found in meticulously written canonical books, the records were made by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (CJCLDS) who donated them to the CBCP.

CBCP President Pablo Virgilio David, bishop of Kalookan, thanked the university for taking on the task of preserving these important documents. The transfer of the documents to UST, Bishop David said, will “make the data more readily available for research work.”

During the turnover ceremony, UST Rector Fr Richard G. Ang, thanked the CBCP for the gift, reiterating the university’s readiness to help the Philippine Church.

UTS has one of the country’s oldest archives, prioritising the selection, conservation and accessibility of documents for the search of historical materials.

According to the Deed of Donation signed on Tuesday, the university will ensure that the materials are placed in a controlled environment and that they are properly handled and used.

It will also make certain that the contents will be accessible to researchers, including graduate students, professors, genealogists, journalists, and other academics, while complying with the provisions of the Data Privacy Act.

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