Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Old Churches of Pampanga:
Betis Church

     The fourth church that my friends and I visited is the church in Betis Area that is also known as the Parish Church of St. James the Apostle. It is my favorite church in Pampanga because of its marvelous interior. This church built in 1770 was declared a National Cultural Treasure by the National Museum of the Philippines and the NCCA in 2001.

     A Natural Treasure like this must be preserved and protected indeed. Iron gates safeguard this intricately carved door that is probably more than 200 years old.

      Paintings in the form of murals and trompe l'oeil cover the majority of the walls and ceilings. Simon Flores, one of the most celebrated Filipino painters of the 19th-Century, as well as Macario Ligon and his nephew-apprentice Victor Ramos, also Daning Henson and a Mr. Pangilinan, all contributed to the breath-taking beauty that emanates inside Betis Church.

       This is the ceiling painting above the nave. There's a museum at the left side of the church and there you'll find infographics about the artworks found inside the church.

        Betis is like the Paete of the North - home to many professional Pinoy woodcarvers. The intricate details of this Baroque retablo and the solid wood rebultos resonate the fine craftsmanship of Betis sculptors.

See more photos HERE.

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