Actress Marian Rivera has given birth to a healthy baby girl at the Makati Medical Center in Makati City.
She and husband Dingdong Dantes immediately received congratulatory messages from friends and fans on becoming new parents to their baby whom they will call Maria Letizia.
Dingdong expressed joy with the coming of their first child.
The proud father immediately posted photo of his daughter’s hand and on the caption said, “Twenty-three November, 2015: The day God decided to deliver His most precious gift.”
It was gathered that christening will be held in January next year at the Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Cubao, Quezon City, the same church where they were wed.
The comely actress is recovering fast at the hospital, according to Dingdong who was with Marian all the way, prompting him to say he witnessed a “miracle.”
The baby, he said, got more of the features of her mother.
According to Dingdong, Marian gave birth at exactly 5:25 a.m. on, November 23. The baby was 3.1-kg (6.9-lbs) and, nicknamed “Baby Z,
‘’Thank God they are both safe and okay,’’ Dingdong said.
Dingdong posted on Instagram: “Maria Letizia came out… today. Thank God they’re both safe.”
“This morning, I witnessed a miracle. And during that moment, I realized that my life will never be the same again,” Dingdong wrote on Instagram, where he also shared with his followers a photo of his daughter’s little hand. “As we welcome this new, graceful chapter with open heart, we want to thank everyone who prayed with us through this sweet journey.”
After five years of being together, Marian and Dingdong tied the knot in a grand church wedding ceremony, celebrated by eight bishops and seven priests, at the Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral in Quezon City last December 30.
A star-studded affair, it was attended by no less than President Benigno Aquino III as Dantes’ best man. The couple also had 40 principal sponsors, 18 groomsmen, 18 bridesmaids and 25 secondary sponsors.
The two mainstays of GMA Network met in 2007 when they co-starred in the local adaptation of “Marimar.” They went on to play sweethearts in several more television series, including “Dyesebel” in 2008
Marian revealed she is pregnant via a TV interview last April, four months after she and Dingdong tied the knot. “’Yun din ang isa sa mga dahilan kaya kami nagpursiging magpakasal; it’s to really build a family. And alam naman natin an ang pagkakaroon ng anak ay isa sa mga mahahalagang bagay para magkaroon ng isang pamilya,” Dingdong said at the time.
The pregnancy led to Marian withdrawing from the GMA-7 drama “The Rich Man’s Daughter,” which was originally planned as the 31-year-old actress’ first soap opera after getting married. Rhian Ramos took over Marian’s role.
“Ito talaga ang pangarap ko at inaasam-asam ko—ang ikasal at magkaroon ng anak at magkaroon ng pamilya. Ito talaga, e,” Marian said in an interview last May.
Marian and Dingdong plan to have their newborn daughter, Maria Letizia, christened in January next year at the same church where they tied the knot, according to the show biz couple’s spiritual adviser and friend, Fr. Tito Caluag, who had been asked to perform the religious rite.
“They originally intended to have the child baptized on Dec. 30, their first wedding anniversary, at the Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Cubao, Quezon City. It was a very nice plan. But because of the holiday rush, they moved it to January,” he said.
Caluag, a former principal of Ateneo de Manila High School (Dingdong’s alma matter), added that he would meet with the family soon “to bless them, especially Letizia.”
Shortly after the news broke online, well wishes started pouring in for the couple and their firstborn, from family, friends and fans—many of whom have been dutifully praying for the new mother’s well-being. On the social networking site Twitter, the topics “Marian Rivera” and “Congrats DongYan,” trended nationwide.
Lilybeth Rasonable, GMA 7 senior vice president for entertainment television, said she was sure that Dingdong and Marian—her godchildren—would become “wonderful parents.” “I’m very happy for them. I wish them luck on this new, exciting chapter in their lives,” she told the Inquirer.
“We celebrate with them. We pray that Baby Z would grow up healthy and fulfill her destiny,” one of the child’s soon-to-be godparent and GMA 7 exec Oliver Amoroso told the Inquirer.
“Baby Z is lucky to have been born in this generation, with Dong and Yan as her parents, because she can grow up to be whatever she wants to be,” the assistant vice president and head of GMA 7’s regional TV-integrated marketing division added.
In her Instagram account, actress Ai-Ai delas Alas, Marian’s “kambal” (twin) and “Sunday PinaSaya” cohost, described Letizia as her “beautiful inaanak.” “Congratulations, Mr. and Mrs. Dantes! God bless your family,” she wrote. “And to you, kambal, enjoy motherhood. Napakasarap maging mommy. (It feels so good to be a mommy).”