The Church of Santa Monica, Panay Capiz

Another travel adventure with wowtrippers in Isla de Gigantes, our meet up is 11AM and since ill be arriving way to much early since ill be coming from Iloilo and them from Manila I decided to research any tourist spot in Roxas. But i can’t seem to find any interesting spot until i found this very beautiful old church.

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From Iloilo I took a Ceres bus from Tagbak Jaro terminal to Roxas which took me around 3hrs bus ride and from the terminal my friend pick me up and we go to St. Pius X Seminary which is located beside the terminal of Ceres. It was just a quick tour of the seminary and I also left my heavy bag there. From St. Pius X Seminary we rented a tricycle going to the town of Pan-ay (we pay 30PHP each for the tricycle). After 20min tricycle ride we reach the point of destination the town of Pan-ay which believed was the 2nd oldest town in the Philippines since it was the 2nd spanish settlement.

 

 

Im so amazed when I saw the facade of the Spanish/Mexican Baroque design of the church. The grand structure of the church is made up of coral stone which is 70m long 25m wide and 18m high. On the left side of the church stands a five level belfry it is known as the biggest and the mostly likely the heaviest Christian bell in Asia and according to our church tour guide it is also the 3rd largest bell in the world.  The massive artefact, called dakong lingganay (big bell) was cast in 1878 using 70 sacks of coins. it is about 7ft. in height and 5ft. in diameter and weighs 10.4 tons.

 

 

Inside the church, floor is covered with marble. Its structure is shaped in the form of latin cross with one large central altar and four lateral ones, the gilded retablos is gilded gorgeously sculptured of a fine hardwood. Various polychromed statues are highly decorated in an artistic quality.

 

 

In 1997, The Church of Santa Monica was declared a National Landmark by the national Historical Institute of the Philippines

 

 

Another fascinating finds is the century old well the Fuente de Vida located at the back of the church’s convent. According to our guide it was the source of water supply way back 1500.

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