Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Taal Heritage Tour:
Our Lady of Caysasay Church

The last destination of our Taal heritage tour leads us to this small church in the town of Caysasay. The facade looks like it was just built a couple of years ago. But if you look at the rest of the building you can tell that it's a pretty old structure. They say that the original walls are made of coral stone. This church is named after the Nuestra Señora de Caysasay, a miraculous wooden statue of the Virgin Mary that was found in the nearby Pansipit river by a fisherman named Juan Maningkad in 1603.

Photos by me and Don Triviño. Click on the small images for a closer look. 

It may not be as grand as the Taal Basilica but this small church has it's own rustic charm.

Ceilings painted with religious images and trompe l'oeil is a trademark of old churches.

This is a large print of the Lady of Caysasay that hangs inside the church. The wooden statue, without the halo, crown and vestments is only 11.5" (including the base). It may be small but it is one of the oldest Marian statues in the country. A replica statue is placed high above the altar in  the church. To see how the original statue looks like the way it was found in 1603, click here. You can read the story about it's finding, the mysterious disappearances, miracles and the apparitions in Caysasay on wikipedia.

This shrine, known as Sta. Lucia Wells, is built on the Caysasay spring which is a short hike from the church. Stories say that the Virgin appeared as a reflection in the spring. 

At the base of the arch shrine are two openings of the well where spring water is collected. It is said that the water from this well can miraculously heal sicknesses.

So that concludes my Taal heritage tour that took place December 29 last year together with friends and some travel bloggers. I hope these few pictures inspired you to visit Taal and experience in person the feeling of being brought back to Spanish times, the spirit of patriotism and faith. 

If you're planing to tour Taal, visit their website for more information. ^_^

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