RADIO MARIA was founded as a parish radio station in 1983, in Arcellasco d’Erba, in the province of Como in the Diocese of Milan. In 1987 the RADIO MARIA Association was founded making RADIO MARIA independent from the parish. In 1990 RADIO MARIA became a national radio in Italy. The following years, by God’s grace it began expanding to other countries. In 1998 the World Family of RADIO MARIA was formed to ensure promotion, sharing, and development of the Radio Maria Project worldwide.
RADIO MARIA FOUNDATION INC., was founded when Fr. Melvin P. Castro, with the blessing of the Most Rev. Florentino F. Cinense, DD (Bishop-Emeritus of Tarlac), requested the World Family of RADIO MARIA to put up a radio station in the Philippines. On February 11, 2002 RADIO MARIA PHILIPPINES was born. Its main studio was constructed in Sunrise Subdivision, Maliwalo, Tarlac City.
In 2007 RADIO MARIA obtained its national franchise. Efforts were made to make RADIO MARIA a true national radio station. Tuguegarao City, Santiago City and Olongapo City became the first focus of expansion. The dream of making Radio Maria a national radio station was fulfilled when the newly constructed repeater station in Tuguegarao City, Cagayan and Santiago City, Isabela were inaugurated on June 19, 2010 and February 19, 2011 respectively. The blessing of the first repeater station in Tuguegarao City was graced by the Most Rev. Diosdado Talamayan, DD, then Archbishop of Tuguegarao, the Most Rev. Ricardo Baccay, DD, then Auxiliary Bishop of Tuguegarao, the Clergy and the faithful of the Archdiocese of Tuguegarao. The second repeater station in Santiago City, Isablea was blessed by the Most Rev. Joseph Nacua, DD of the Diocese of Ilagan together with his clergy and faithful. The third repeater station in Olongapo City on January 14, 2016 was graced by the Archbishop of San Fernando de Pampanga, who is the former Bishop of the Diocese of Iba in Zambales, the Most Rev. Florentino Lavarias, DD, the Administrator of the Diocese of Iba, Rev. Fr. Daniel Presto, the Clergy and the Faithful of the same diocese.
All the repeater stations were installed and blessed under the incumbency of the Most Rev. Florentino F. Cinense, DD, Bishop-Emeritus of Tarlac who also personally attended the inaugurations of the stations. The first two repeater stations namely 101.5 FM in Cagayan and 102.1 FM in Isabela were erected under the dynamic leadership of the then President of Radio Maria Foundation, Inc., Ms. Joy Catalina Gallardo and the second Director of Radio Maria Philippines, Fr. Jay M. Policarpio.
The newest repeater station of Radio Maria, 95.9FM in Zambales, which is thus far the most powerful of all Radio Maria Philippines frequencies with a 5000 Kilowatts transmission power was blessed under the incumbency of the present Director of Radio Maria, Rev. Fr. Raymund S. Cruz.
Currently, Radio Maria is present in more than 76 countries.