Cathedral - Singles
St. Augustine Church (Paoay) -
24p Miagao Church -
26p Barasoain Church -
Original quanity is 50,000 less spoilage of 120
Designer: Jesus Alfredo D. Delos Santos
Project Coordinators: Dr. Ngo Tiong Tak,
Corazon T. Loza
First Day Covers: Manila
CHRISTMAS 2006 STAMPS FEATURING COLONIAL CHURCHES
The hundreds of churches that were built
throughout the Philippines were a product of the missionary
enterprise of the Spanish regime that began in 1521. In 1899, when
the last of the Spanish fleet left the Philippines, they left
behind, among many irrevocable influences, hundreds of brick and
stone churches throughout the archipelago.
Among these were the Manila Cathedral in
Intramuros, Manila, St. Augustine (Paoay Church) in lIocos Norte,
Miagao Church in Iloilo City and Barasoain Church in Malolos City.
The cathedral, also known as the minor basilica of the Immaculate
Conception, was the seat of the Archbishop of Manila during the
Spanish colonial period in the Philippines, and still remains the
ecclesiastical seat of the Archdiocese of Manila. Completed in 1951,
the Manila Cathedral rises majestically over the remains of five
predecessors, the first of which was erected in 1581. Four of the
previous constructions were destroyed by earthquakes and fires, the
fifth was reduced to a bombed-out shell during the Battle for Manila
in 1945. The new Romanesque edifice incorporates stone carvings and
rosette windows salvaged from the ruins.
St. Augustine Church (Paoay Church).
Popularly known as Paoay Church, St. Augustine Church was built in
1694 through the efforts of Augustinian friars led by Fr. Antonio
Estavillo. Considered as the most outstanding variant of the
"earthquake Baroque", the church was built of baked bricks, coral
rocks, salbot (tree sap) and lumber, and has 24 curved buttresses.
Earthquake damaged portions of the church in 1865 and 1885. In an
excavation conducted inside the church in 2000, a prehistoric human
skeleton and fragmented ceramics were discovered and are now on
display at the National Museum. The Paoay Church was declared a
national treasure by then President Ferdinand Marcos. Now included
in UNESCO's World Heritage List, it revealed several structural
decays after centuries of exposure to the elements and will soon
undergo restoration under the auspices of UNESCO.
The Church of Santo Tomas de Villanueva in the town of Miagao,
Iloilo is one of the Philippines' architectural and religious gems.
Built between 1787 and 1797, its fortress-like design suggests its
dual purpose as a place of worship and as a fort used in defending
the town against Moro raiders at the time. It is one of only four
(Augustinian-built) churches in the country to make it to the
prestigious UNESCO World Heritage List. Its unique features include
the unusual Aztec like bas-relief in the facade depicting St.
Christopher carrying the baby Jesus through a tropical forest. The
adobe used in building the church is made from silt and clay that
can only be found in this part of Iloilo, giving the building a
unique warm-yellowish glow. Flying buttresses from the side of the
church walls are typical of the "earthquake baroque" design
reminiscent of churches in lIocos, particularly that of Paoay Church
and Vigan Cathedral. Also of note are the dissimilar designs of the
two belfries; both were commissioned by two different parish
priests. The church's simple interior is nevertheless highlighted by
a striking gold-plated retablo. Miagao is about 40kms southwest of
A national shrine, this historic church is the site of the
Constitutional Convention of the first Philippine Republic. It is in
this church that the Malolos Constitution ,was drafted on September
29, 1898. Founded by Augustinian Missionaries in 1859, it is said to
be a replica of the Barasoain Church in Navarra, Spain.