The seven-story edifice commemorates the late Pope John Paul II’s pastoral visit to Bacolod last February 20, 1981. The tower was built in the area where he delivered one of his most powerful messages on behalf of the poor.
The building’s vision and mission states, “The Pope John Paul II Tower is a pilgrimage center that embodies and perpetuates the ideas, life, advocacies, commitment and holiness of Pope John Paul II – an ardent promoter of the culture of life and the culture of love.”
The Pope Tower stands on a 706 square-meter lot donated by Mr. Simplicio Palanca, the president of the Bacolod Real Estate Development Corporation (Bredco). It was put together in 2008 out of the inspiration of Fr. Felix Pasquin.
Engraved at the base of the pope’s eight-foot-tall bronze statue on the front yard: “Pope John Paul II celebrated the Eucharist on this site, the Bacolod Real Estate Development Corporation (BREDCO) Area, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, Philippines before an assembly of almost a million people on February 20, 1981. Unveiled and Blessed by his Grace Archbishop Edward Joseph Adams, Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines, with the assistance of Bishop Vicente M. Navarra, D.D., Bishop of Bacolod and Rev. Fr. Felix Pasquin, Rector of San Sebastian Cathedral on the occasion of the blessing of the Pope John Paul II Tower on February 18, 2010.”
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The Pope John Paul II Tower houses a number of memorabilia about the pope and his visit to Bacolod City. Some of these are commemorative coins, the chair on which he sat, the vestment he wore, the table napkin, spoon, fork and plate used, and photos of him contributed by supporters.
The tower has a viewing deck with a view of the Bacolod cityscape. The place also hosted a viewing of the beatification of Pope John Paul II in Rome last May 1, 2011.
You can visit the tower between 8:00am until 8:00pm daily. An entrance fee of Php20 per head is collected for donation and the building’s maintenance.