MANILA -- The Philippines will be celebrating National Heritage Month in May this year with the release of special stamps of Philippine colonial churches declared as national cultural treasures.

Commissioner for Cultural Heritage, Rev. Fr. Harold Rentoria, in a Palace briefing, said the stamps will be released by the Philippine Postal Corporation during the Heritage Month opening ceremony slated in Davao City on May 2.

Rentoria said Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) Chairman Dr. Rene Escalante, and National Artist for Literature, Virgilio Almario will be among the guests of honor.

Other activities set throughout the month include an open-air concert in Rizal Park and Paco Park organized by the National Parks Development Authority; and a theatrical production titled, “Journeys on a Galleon” by acclaimed playwright and theater director Floy Quintos which will be held at the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

There will also be lectures and workshops on the different parts of the country, organized by the Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino, the National Archives of the Philippines, and the NHCP.

The NHCP also organized a heritage tour in Loay in Bohol that will be on May 13.

The National Museum of the Philippines is also set to inaugurate the National Museum of Natural History on May 18, showcasing the country’s rich biodiversity.

The National Library of the Philippines will also open an exhibit of books and photos on Filipino culture and history titled, “A Book to Remember,” on May 2 which will run until May 31.

Rentoria, meanwhile, urged the public to "help preserve this heritage for the enjoyment of future generation."

In 2013, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo through Proclamation No. 439, declared the month of May every year as National Heritage Month.

National Heritage Month celebration is expected to create in the people a consciousness, respect and love for legacies of Filipino history.

It is also expected to raise material support for the protection of tangible and intangible heritage; to strengthen the people’s awareness of cultural heritage sites, structures and landscapes; and encourage their participation in the preservation of their cultural legacies through various activities. (PNA)