Holy pilgrimage sites in the Philippines really worth visiting…
Posts from the ‘Christianity’ Category
The Philippines, as a Christian nation, is divided into archdioceses. Each archdiocese is divided into dioceses. Each diocese is divided into parishes.
An archdiocese is headed by an archbishop, a diocese by a bishop and a parish by a priest. Here are some of the most notable and famous cathedrals in the Philippines.
1.) Jaro Cathedral
The beautiful and classic Jaro Cathedral is a popular cathedral in the Visayas region of the Philippines. It is the seat of the Archbishop of Jaro. This cathedral is located in Jaro, Iloilo City in Iloilo province. It is officially known as the Parish of Our Lady of Candles, a cathedral especially dedicated to the Virgin Mary. It is located in the island of Panay where Boracay is located.
The statue of Virgin Mary, reportedly miraculous statue, was canonically crowned by the late Pope John Paul II in 1982 and the image is the only religious icon in the Philippines to have been personally crowned by a Pope.
Baybayanting is a unique cultural presentation of Lupaoenios presented every 25th of July in honor of their patron – Saint James or Señor Santiago.
This peculiar cultural tradition is presented every year by selected members of Iglesia Filipina Independiente, a Christian sect founded by a Filipino priest. Baybayanting is a choreograph fighting which is usually performed by 9 pairs of fighting Filipino warriors and Spanish conquistadores.
Performers are using real bolo and a unique type of elongated shield. One can actually see sparks of these bladed weapons as they strike each other making spectators get up to their feet while screaming.
One of the highlights of this presentation is the interference once in a while amidst fighting warriors of a woman carrying his little baby begging for them to stop fighting.
Opposing fighters are determined by the color of their costumes. Spanish warriors wear headdress while Filipino warriors wear Filipino traditional hat made of anahaw leaves.
The town of Lupao is located in the northern part of the province of Nueva Ecija in Central Luzon. This small and thriving municipality is situated on the foot of the Caraballo Mountains. It is bounded by Umingan, Pangasinan on the north, by San Jose City on the south, by the mountainous town of Carranglan in the east and by the Science City of Muñoz and Talugtog town in the west
(All photos courtesy of Dra. Blaise Sheryl A. Soriano)
In the Philippines (the only Christian country in Asia) there are many churches in the entire archipelago, except in areas where the prevailing religion is Islam.
Basilica Minore de San Sebastian: The Only All-Steel Church in Asia
One of the most unique churches in the Philippines is the Basilica Minore de San Sebastian or better known as San Sebastian Church. This church which was built in 1891 is located in Manila and is the seat of the Parish of San Sebastian and the National Shrine of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. This church is remarkable for its architectural features. This Christian house of worship is the “only all-steel” church or basilica in Asia. This National Historical Landmark is also considered to be the first prefabricated building in the world and the only prefabricated steel church in the world.
Being the only Christian country in Asia, it is but natural that there are famous and historical churches in the Philippines. Check this out!
The lists of churches included below were famous and historical either due to religious reasons or political reasons.
The Quiapo Church in Manila is probably the most popular church in the Philippine archipelago. This church is officially known as Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene.
This religious edifice houses the Black Nazarene; a much venerated statue of Jesus Christ which many people believe has miraculous attributes.
The Feast of the Black Nazarene is regarded as one of the most spectacular religious events that take place in the Philippine history. Every 9th of January, thousands of devotees from all walks of life come to the district of Quiapo to take part in the procession as a way of strengthening their faith or fulfilling their vow to Lord.
The Philippines is the only Christian nation in Asia. Predominantly, the largest percentage of the country’s population belongs to the Roman Catholic Church representing more than 80 % of the entire population.
Aside from the Roman Catholic Church, there are other significant Christian denominations/sects in the country most of which were established by Filipinos. In the real sense, the primary aim of establishment of a religion is to unite people but due to the mushrooming of so many Christian denominations not only in the Philippines but from all over the world, and because of the varying, contradicting and multiple doctrines of these sects people are divided.
1. El Shaddai Movement
This movement is believed to be the largest born-again movement in the Philippines. They don’t have churches or temples. Instead they gather every Sunday at Quirino Grandstand located at Luneta Park in Manila, the country’s capital. El Shaddai is a Catholic Charismatic Renewal Movement from the Philippines. Its founder and servant leader is Mariano “Mike” Velarde- better known as Brother Mike. Their Diocesan Bishop is the Reverend JessieMercado of the Diocese of Parañaque, and its Spiritual Director is Novaliches Bishop Emeritus Teodoro Bacani of the Roman Catholic Church.
2. Iglesia Ni Cristo
One of the largest Christian sects in the Philippines with more or less 3 million members is the Iglesia ni Cristo or Church of Christ, a Christian restorationist religious organization that originated in the Philippines. Most publications refer to Felix Y. Manalo as the founder of the church. In fact, Felix Manalo officially registered the church as a corporation sole with him as executive minister on July 27, 1914. The INC’s official doctrine, however,do not teach Manalo as its founder. The most basic component of the INC’s beliefs is that Felix Manalo was sent by God to reestablish the Christian Church in its true, pristine form because the original church was apostatized.
They believe that this apostatized church is the Catholic Church, and present Catholic dogma, such as the Trinity, as proof of this apostasy. The organization does not submit to the dogma of the Trinity or the dogmas that Jesus and the Holy Spirit are Gods
Miracles exist everyday, everywhere, big or small but sometimes we just don’t notice it, or simply ignore it. Believe that even the smallest prayer can still be heard as long as it’s sincere and every prayer is answered in His time.
France has its Our Lady of Lourdes, Portugal has its Our Lady of Fatima and Mexico has its Our lady of Guadalupe, well, the Philippines has its Our Lady of Manaoag aside from Our Lady of Piat in Cagayan.
A religious shrine with countless miraculous tales and healing powers Manaoag, Pangasinan is one of the Philippines’ pilgrimage centers due to the presence of the Our Lady of Manaoag Shrine, home to the image of the Nuestra Señora del Rosario ( Our Lady of the Rosary), which is believed by many to have miraculous powers. Non-Catholics may jeer at such idolatrous devotion, but that has not deterred millions of Catholics and believers from different places in the world from visiting the shrine and venerating this representation of the Virgin Mary.
The church of Our Lady of Manaoag was established 400 years ago. Ten years after its establishment, the ivory image of Mary was brought to the Philippines by Padre Juan de San Jacinto from Spain via Acapulco. Folk tradition has it that the Blessed Mother Mary Herself designated the place where the church would be built. The church and Our Lady passed through unnumbered historical events, and remain unmoved by them. The Shrine stands on the hilltop at the center of the town proper.