Waking up early and taking pictures during the break of light at Gaspar Island made us famished. Hunger beckoned around 7am that we no longer explored the other 2 islands nearby and decided to head back for our much awaited breakfast. Food at the resort was so-so. After resting a bit we headed north. Had a short stop at Amoingan for an errand and then headed further up north to the island capital of Boac.
We took the the public jeep on the main highway just at the entrance of the resort. From Gasan to Amoingan, jeep took 30 minutes at around Php15 each. And from Amoingan we took a tryke all the way to Boac Cathedral for Php 8 per pax. The Boac Catherdral isn’t hard to find since it’s on top of a hill overlooking the whole Boac City. It used to be a fortress and refuge for the Filipinos during the Spanish time. Now it stood there high on a hill like a sentinel guarding its beloved
Entering the cathedral gates led us face to face with one of the most beautiful old churches I’ve seen in our country. The terra cotta walls is similar to that of the Sta Cruz Church in its neighboring town. Structure is almost the same as well sans the protruding balcony on its main doors. The massive buttresses on the side of the church reminds me of another impressive church, San Agustin in Paoay Ilocos. This church was built 1666 in honor of the Blessed Virgin of Biglang-awa (Immediate Succor) but still retains its original facade and main body from its Fil-hispanic Gothic design.
As you go into the church, it’s hard not to stop and admire the elaborate display of its two wooden doors. The thick and old wooden doors are engraved with fine details of floras, cherubs and the images of the Four Evangelists: John, Luke, Mark and Matthew. The profuse floor patterns, wall-hung period lamps, Muslim gong inspired ceiling designs and an intricate altar blends together to make this one beautiful church.
As we may love to be awed more by the details of the church, there were a series of funeral services that we had to leave the premises in respect. A visit to Boac Cathedral is one sample of how a age old church preservation should be done.
Ferdz Decena is an award-winning travel photographer, writer and blogger. His works has found print in publications such as Singapore Airlines’s Silver Kris, Philippine Airlines’ Mabuhay, Cebu Pacific’s Smile and Seair InFlight. He has also lent his expertise to various organizations like the Oceana Philippines, Lopez Group Foundation, Save the Children and World Vision, contributing quality images for their marketing materials.