Portuguese prince visits Immaculate Conception Church in Bangkok
HRH Prince Duarte Pio, Duke of Braganza, head of the Royal House of Portugal, on Sunday visited the Church of Immaculate Conception of Bangkok in the Samsen area of Dusit district.
The Duke presented the community with a statue of the Portuguese Immaculate Mary as a gift to the church. The statue depicted the Virgin Mary holding the baby Jesus.
He was welcomed by many Thai Christians and Thai Catholic descendants of Portuguese whose forefathers settled in Thailand more than 300 years ago.
The ceremony took place in the church, which is believed to the oldest church in Thailand. Its name comes from the Catholic belief that by the will of God the Virgin Mary was conceived free from original sin.
The Duke is the current head of the House of Braganza which ruled Portugal until the revolution abolishing the monarchy in 1910. He is the greatgrandson of King Miguel I, and the last King Manuel II.
The Prince, 72, told the audience it was his wish to visit all the churches where Portuguese descendants still remain.
This is his second visit to the Bangkok church after his first visit in 2014. After the ceremony, he was shown many Portuguese names written on the tombstones.