Pilgrims for Christ

Columban missionaries have served in the Philippines since 1929. Through parishes and mission work on the islands of Luzon, Negros and Mindanao, the Columbans continue to touch the lives of thousands of Filipinos. 

The Columbans care for handicapped children, address ecological concerns such as strip mining, work with tribal people, participate in peace initiatives between Muslims and Catholics and have long-term programs designed to improved the lives of the Filipino people. 

Interreligious Dialogue

Interreligious Dialogue

Columban Mission today engages with people of many faiths in an increasingly multi-cultural and interreligious world.

Filipino Columban Priests

Be a Columban Priest

Columban Fr. Leonito Distor was installed as the first Filipino Columban Parish Priest at Our Lady of Remedies in Manila. Learn more about becoming a Columban Priest.

Columban Lay Missionaries

Lay Missionaries

The Columban Lay Missionaries is an intercultural group of women and men called to respond to God's mission by crossing boundaries of race, culture and creed.

Columbans in the Philippines

Columban Fr. E. Persio in his truck

Mission Opens in 1929

The Philippines was the first Asian country outside of China where the Columbans started a mission. Archbishop Michael J. O’Doherty of the Archdiocese of Manila was dealing with a shortage of Catholic priests in that country, and consequently sent out an urgent call to the Columbans for help. In May 1929, with the Vatican’s approval, the first three Columban Fathers arrived in the Philippines: Gerald M. Cogan, Michael Cuddigan, and Patrick Kelly. They headed to the parish of Malate, in Manila.

Columban Mission


Years of mission to the world




Generations of people lifted to dignity