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Saints Peter and Paul Parish Church (Calasiao)

The Saints Peter and Paul Parish Church (Iglesia

Parroquial de los Santos Pedro y Pablo), commonly
known as Calasiao Church is a baroque church located
in Poblacion West, Calasiao, Pangasinan, Philippines. It
belongs to the Vicariate of Sts. Peter and Paul under
the Ecclesiastical Province of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan. The 57, 840 Catholics
is under the pastoral care of Rev. Fidelis B. Layog, assisted by Rev. Isidro Palinar, Jr. and andRev. Raymund

and restored the bricked front wall, antique statues and

the ceilings original oral motif.[4]
Parish priests included, Fr. Juan Bello, Fathers Benigno
Seraca, Jos Ferrer and Msgr. Oscar Aquino under
Bishop Jesus Cabrera. The present Parish Priest is Fidelis
B. Layog. Msgr. Luis Ungson is assisted by Fr. Ronwell
Fabregas and by Fr. Jose R. Carino and Allen O. Romero.
At present, the Church owns fully automatic bells or
chimes which could be heard within 7 or 8 kilometerradius.[5]

The Spanish-colonial-era Church was declared a National

Cultural Treasure by the National Museum of the Philippines and the National Commission for Culture and the

2 Description
Calasiaos prioririty status is due to its geographic representation of various regions across the nation, being one
of the largest Churches in Pangasinan.[6][7]

Church history

Built in several stages from the 17th to 19th centuries by

the Dominicans, the best-preserved Pangasinan church
bell tower and some parts have been reconstructed because of massive earthquakes. The 17th Century Calasiao
Dominican Provincial chapter church under St. Pauls
patronage became Sts. Peter and Paul Parish under Fr.
Juan Maldonado de San Pedro Martin as parish priest after 1621.

The imposing Cagayan style facade of bricks and cement

of Calasiiao Church, today, is 88.3 meter long, 25 metres
wide and 27.3 meters high.The sprawling convent is 75
meter long, 25 meters wide and has 2 yards. Its 5-story
hexagonal brick bell tower (replica of the earthquake destroyed original on July 16, 1990) is 30 meter high.
The prized original retablos (and a classic altar) is ornately decorated with statues of saints. The Baroque-style
carved, the painted ceilings and the magnicent overall
exterior are preserved for centuries. The intricate sculpture has tone of the Renaissance ages undying European
Art as demonstrated by the majesty of its ceiling or dome,
walls and the altar from the aisle near the main door.

In 1763, Filipino rebel Palaris (Binalatongan or San Carlos) burned the church. In 1804. Bishop Miguel Garcia de Nueva Segovia presided over the 1773 Synod of
Calasiao at the sprawling Convento (per Manila Provincial Council Acts of 1771 to implement Decrees). Archbishop Basilio Sancho de Santa Justa y Runa convened
The magnicent structures main door, the entrance to
the Council from May to November, 1771.
the Church features some heavy details: "Iglesia ParroCalasiao had a new church of 3 naves (89 varas or yards
quial San Pedro Y San Pablo Calasiao, Pangasinan". The
long, 22 wide and 18 high with 2 rows of windows) churchs large wooden oors on the second oor was setwith a bell tower. But in 1841 to 1842, this church ting of Mga Kuwento ni Lola Basyang and the Sleeping
was destroyed and rebuilt by Father Dalman in 1852 and beauty Episode. Outside, sculptures, could be found inthen burned and restored from 1853 to 1858 by Father cluding the cave of the Nativity and the Sunico heritage
Ramos Suarez. The March 16, 1892 massive earthquake bell on display and the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
damaged the church. Dominican Vicar Fr. Bonifacio
Museo Calasiao, a mini museum stands on the right side
Probanza left Calasiao in 1898.
of the Church inside the sprawling convent which shows
The 1936 Christ the King saw a new Church. In 1945, some vintage photos and history of the Church. Its domethe Lingayen cathedral and the archbishops palace was kitchen structure separately engineered from the church
temporarily transferred to Calasiao amid the miraculous and the convent is one of its odd and distinct features.[8]
3 Liberation bombs thrown into the church and convent Some parts of the church are currently being renovated
but failed to explode,
as there are plans to promote it as a tourist attraction. FaThe massive earthquake July 16, 1990 destroyed its bel- ther Layog adds there are plans to put up a gallery so that
fry. Msgr. Luis B. Ungson reconstructed the Churchs visitors can appreciate the churchs historical value.


In front of the church and Convento are spacious parking Augustinians, Franciscans, Jesuits, Dominicans, and Auareas for vehicles tightly guarded by a solid iron entrance gustinian Recollects, and all the major regions of the
gate.[7] Some meters therefrom is the famous "Senor Di- country.[13][14]
vino Tesoro Shrine" with the miraculous statue of a crucied Jesus Christ (believed to grow in size).[6][7]

4 Image gallery
Main door
Bell tower view of the left facade of the Church
Sunico bell
1895 Heritage Bell A la Sagrada Familia Fundacion de Hilario Chanuangco - Sunico y Santos

1588 Parish Church of Saints Peter and Paul (prized original retablos and classic altar ornately decorated with statues of


Baroque Church

As one of the Baroque Churches of the Philippines, the

Parish Church of Saints Peter and Paul has been at the
forefront of Philippine history-Spanish colonial rule. Its
unique architectural design reects the Spanish and Latin
American architecture integration of indigenous Philippines works of art with Chinese style fusion. Its massive
bricks or ladrillo had been designed to withstand revolts
and rebellions, due to its fortresses facade.
Its massive retablo mayor is massive and complex woodwork is seen at the back.[9]
Within the Pacic Ring of Fire, the Philippine Church
of Calasiao, known as Earthquake Baroque, has powerful
and most imposing buttresses and foundations but failed
upon massive earthquakes annihilations.[10][11][12]

Declaration as a National Cultural Treasure

In 2001, Calasiao Church was declared as declared a

National Cultural Treasure by the National Museum of
the Philippines and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts under R.A. 4896 (as amended by P.D.
374 and R.A. 8492), on September 29, 2001 It is the 5th
church to be declared as National Cultural Treasure.[2]
The Calasiao church (second in Pangasinan, following
San Carlos) was adjudged as possessing outstanding historical, cultural, artistic and/or scientic value and are
representative of the original church-building orders of

5 References
[13] National Commission for Culture and Arts.

Benjamin Locsin Layug, A Tourist Guide to Notable Philippine Churches. (Pasig City, Philippines:
New Day Publishers, 2007), p. 83.
The 20102011 Catholic Directory of the Philippines (published by Claretian Publications for the
Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines,
June 2010)
Blair, Emma Helen, d. 1911, ed. The Philippine
Islands. (1493-1898)
Coseteng, Alice M. L. The Good Wood. Filipino
Heritage: The Making of a Nation. Vol. 4. Ed by
Alfredo Roces. Quezon City. Lahing Filipino Publication. 1977-78.
Marxist Sociological Perspective. Art Historys
History. Vernon Hyde Minor. Phaidon Press.1989.

External links

Media related to Calasiao Church at Wikimedia Commons


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