Visita Iglesia in Sorsogon

In 1570 two Augustinian friars, Alonzon Jiménez and Juan Orta, accompanied by a certain captain, Enrique de Guzmán, reached Hibalong, a small fishing village near the mouth of Ginangra River, and planted the cross and erected the first chapel in Luzon. It was from this village that Ibalong, referring to the whole region, came to be. Moving inland with a northwesterly direction they passed by the territory now known as Pilar, before they reached Camalig, Albay. The establishment of the Abucay-Catamlangan Mission later was ample proof of this. The early towns established here were: Gibalon in 1570 (now sitio of Magallanes); Casiguran – 1600; Bulusan – 1631; Pilar – 1635; Donsol – 1668; Bacon – 1764; Gubat, Sorsogon, Juban and Matnog – 1800; Bulan – 1801; Castilla – 1827; Magallanes – 1860; Sorsogon – 1866 and Irosin – 1880. The province was eventually separated from Albay on October 17, 1894 and adopted the name Sorsogon. The town of Sorsogon was also selected as its capital.

Sorsogon is the province of Luzon island located at the tip of Bicol peninsula. As I checked on its municipalities within the day, in this post, I’ll share my visita iglesia starting from Bulan up to Irosin. There are interesting heritage churches you may visit along the way.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Sorsogon (Latin: Dioecesis Sorsogonensis) is a diocese of the Latin Rite of the Roman Catholic Church in the Philippines. The diocese was established in 1951 by the Archdiocese of Caceres, and in 1968, the diocese was subdivided after the Diocese of Masbate separated. The diocese is a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Caceres. The seat of the diocese is the Cathedral of Sts. Peter & Paul, Apostles in Sorsogon City.
Coat of arms of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sorsogon
The volcano of Bulusan is surmounted by the keys and the sword that represent Saints Peter and Paul respectively who are titulars of the cathedral. The book with the lily surrounded by fishes represent Saint Anthony of Padua, Doctor of the Church and patron saint of the capital of Masbate which is within the territory of the diocese (until 1968). The fishes allude to one of the miracles attributed to the saint while still alive: when men did not listen to his preaching, he went to preach to the fishes which lifted up their heads above the water in wrapt attention.
Immaculate Conception Parish Church – The parish church was built in 1866 and has been part of the tangible heritage of Bulan, Sorsogon.
Sorsogon Cathedral (Filipino: Katedral ng Sorsogon), officially known by its ecclesiastical name, the Saints Peter and Paul Parish Cathedral (Filipino: Parokyang Katedral nina San Pedro at San Pablo), is a Roman Catholic cathedral in Sorsogon City, capital of Sorsogon province, The Philippines. The cathedral is facing the Sorsogon Bay and is situated in the city center of Sorsogon City. It is the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sorsogon with Saints Peter and Paul as primary patron saints.
St. Anthony of Padua Parish Church – the catholic church is located within town center of Gubat, Sorsogon. June 13 of every year has always been a special day for the Gubatnons since June 13, 1731 when the missionary Franciscan founders dedicated Gubat to God in honor of Saint Anthony of Padua. Thirty-three (33) years later, on June 13, 1764, Gubat officially became a Pueblo independent of Bulusan.
St. Joseph the Worker Parish Church – The site of Barcelona was originally part of Gubat and Bulusan. The town’s name was known as Danlog, taken from the name of a local river. The change of name to Barcelona was recommended by a Spanish official who saw some similarities with Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain). On April 16, 1886, it became a pueblo civil. Until 1868, it was part of the parish of St. James the Great of Bulusan. After 1868, it took St. Joseph as its patron saint and celebrates their town fiesta on May 19. The church is now an Important Cultural Property.
St. James the Greater Parish ChurchBulusan, like the rest of Sorsogon, was part of the province of Albay till October 17, 1894. In Inarado, the fourth parroquia (parish) of the present Province of Sorsogon, was established in 1630. After being merely a part of Casiguran (established in 1600), Bulusan became an independent parish following Bacon (established in 1617) and the parish of Sorsogon (established in 1628). It became a separate pueblo civil (town) in 1631. The new parish was then placed under the tutelary of St. James, the Greater — the patron saint of Spain. Fr. Miguel de Santa Ana became its first parish priest, exercising one-man authority over ecclesiastical and civil functions. The people also selected the first executive of the place, a gobernadorcillo.
In 1760, the town was transferred from Inarado to its present site at the mouth of Bulusan River. This was triggered by the need to trade with neighboring settlements. The relocation was done through the efforts of Fr. Joaquin de los Santos, the parish priest. Under the friar’s guidance, the people chose Bernardino Pasion as first head of the town. The natives started building a church in the place where a new one now stands. This initial development formed the nucleus of the present poblacion (town center).
St. Michael the Archangel Parish Church – The Irosin hilltop church is located at the heart of the town and situated on a commanding hill about 100 feet above sea level and is accessible by car on a winding road or by foot by mounting a flight of 73 cemented steps. The original structure was built mostly through the polo system in 1888 when Fr. Esteban Rivera was the Parish Priest (1887-1890) and Anacleto Galarosa was the Capitan Municipal (1888-1890).  Men, women and even children from the town contributed to the construction of the church. It used to feature at least twelve long and huge wooden pillars at the center aisles, Spanish tiles and chandeliers from Taxco, Mexico.

Sorsogon Clockwise Loop: Bulan-Sorsogon City-Gubat-Barcelona-Bulusan-Irosin

Have a blessed visita iglesia everyone! (n_n)

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