As a chapel in the 1970s to its re-consecration as a church in 1983, the Shrine of St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus has risen from its humble beginnings to shine as a Diocesan Shrine of the Military Ordinariate in 2007. The edifice that we are standing in is the result of a partnership between the Military Ordinariate and Magnificat Ventures Corporation that began in 2003, when a Memorandum of Agreement was forged for the construction of the St. Thérèse Shrine and Columbarium.
In May 2007, Cardinal Ricardo Vidal consecrated and re-dedicated the church to St. Thérèse, the Doctor of Divine Love, on her 82nd anniversary of Canonization. Bishop Leopoldo Tumulak, Military Bishop, declared the church as a Diocesan Shrine of the Military Ordinariate.
The primary influence for the design of the Shrine was patterned after the Reliquary of St. Thérèse. The building is shaped like a cross, as most Shrines are, with long nave and two shorter transepts.
The Shrine’s architectural style is Classical Contemporary, characterized by a column-less interior and sleek, rounded lines of the church. Being near the airport, the Shrine’s height dimensions are limited by the Air Transportation Office; the building is 35 meters from street level to the tip of the dome, the maximum height allowed by the ATO.
The 14 windows on either side of the Shrine signify the 14 Stations of the Cross; a 15th Station of a Resurrected Christ will be added later above the Crying Room. This can be seen above the front doors of the church. The dome contains 16 additional stained glass windows depicting the Popes of the Catholic Church. Notable works of art in the Shrine include several sculptures of Filipino Artist Toym Imao: St. Thérèse as Doctor of the Church, San Lorenzo Ruiz and Blessed Pedro Calungsod.