Famous Churches – Our Lady of the Gate Parish Church, Daraga, Albay, Philippines


DARAGA CHURCH, ALBAY BICOL, PHILIPPINES

The Church is believed to be built in 1773 by Franciscan missionaries. This 18th century Church is located on the brink of a hill, having grasping view of the sea and Mayon Volcano.  The Church was constructed after the eruption of Mayon Volcano which covered the original church of the town at Cagsawa. Daraga Church’s architecture is a mixture of Mexican baroque and renaissance gothic.  Its fascia is constructed with volcanic stones. It has four columns, each with at decorations its core. The decorations have images of the Evangelists. The coat of arms of the Franciscan Order, images of Franciscan saints, and of Our Lady of the Gate are also prominent part of the Church’s Facade. During World War 2, the Church was destroyed and  it was then renovated in 1971-1973. Funded by NCCA (National Commission for Culture and the Arts), it’s now being renovated again. The belfry is made from volcanic stones, the shape of the columns is octagonal carrying images of the 12 apostles.

It is also pertinent to mention here that the disastrous volcanic eruption on February 1, 1814 destroyed Cagsawa and four nearby towns killing around 2000 residents. What remains today is the belfry of the Cagsawa Church.

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