It’s the last day of holy week and last day of a long holiday in the Philippines. While most people thrive to go back home or to go to places to avoid work hassles on Monday, my family is doing church visit.
Travel Origin: Lupao, Nueva Ecija
Travel Time: 2-2.5 hrs
Our first destination is the Basilica Minore of Our Lady of Charity or the Agoo Basilica. Franciscan Friars founded the church in 1578. It was only from 1975 to 1978 that the church was relocated and constructed on its current site.
Upon arrival, we immediately proceeded to the candle lighting area. From here, you can see the wishing well in the Basilica’s Our Lady’s Garden.
Since its Easter Sunday, the Basilica was overtly crowded. Many eagerly participate in the mass, thanks to the LCD TVs attached to the building’s columns that shows the flow of the mass as per its parts and pre-determined responses.
Travel Origin: Agoo, La Union
Travel Time: 1-1.5 hrs
The second church we visited was the Cathedral of St. William the Hermit. Situated behind San Fernando city’s plaza, it’s at the midst of busy streets. Built in 1817 and tracing the church’s foundation as early as 1764, the Cathedral is hailed as a city landmark. It serves as the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Fernando De La Union.
The structure have a clean minimalist feel due to its white and light blue color. Yet in contrast of the exterior, the interior have gold, white and brown facade. Big medieval inspired chandelier graces the ceilings over the glossy marble floors.
The altar gives a majestic vibe with gold plated elements highlighted by vivid orange lighting.
At the left side of the church, a small area with a Marian grotto serves as site for candle lighting.
These two churches are both in La Union and both an hour drive from each other so you can take side trips on certain places along the way.
Trivia: Agoo Basilica is one of the 13 minor Basilica’s that the Vatican granted in the Philippines.