Monday, April 14, 2014

Old Churches of Pampanga:
San Guillermo Church

     The third church in Pampanga that I visited, with a couple of friends,  is located in Bacolor.  When I first saw it, I thought that it is a rather low-rise church compared to the first two that we visited earlier.

      I didn't  know that this church is actually half-buried in volcanic ash from the eruption of Mount Pinatubo. The volcano erupted in 1991 but typhoon waters in October 1995 created a mudslide and tragically buried the entire town with over 6 meters of volcanic ash. See a photo of the church before the disaster here.
      The original 1576 church was destroyed by earthquake in 1880 and was rebuilt in 1886. This is indeed a very old structure.

       Inside the church, the floor is now at the same level as the base of window arches. Because the windows are buried, dormers  on the roof provide light and ventilation.

     The altar, as well as the central and side retablos were painstakingly excavated and restored. They are after all  centuries-old heritage of  the town of Bacolor.

      The church also has a museum. Though also half-burried, it has a large floor area that dramatically exhibits the parish' memorabilia.

  See more photos HERE.

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