Although their main purpose is to be an avenue for people to express their faith, churches in the Philippines are also known to be very artistic in style and design.
Murals of famous stories in the Bible and the use of traditional architectural techniques make these places surprising tourist spots. Many churches are named after religious figures, and in Cebu, one stands to commemorate the second Filipino saint, who is coincidentally a local of the island.
Located behind one of the biggest malls in the country is a chapel dedicated to San Pedro Calungsod. Many of the locals are familiar with the church’s interesting design. If interior is considered a memorable factor in the provinces, the chapel’s facade would definitely leave visitors in awe.
The Patron of Catechists
Some records may say otherwise, but it is widely believed that Calungsod was born in the town of Ginatilan in Southern Cebu. He was one of the volunteers to join the Spanish Jesuit missionaries when they were sent to the West Pacific. He and his companion were martyred in Guam after baptizing a non-believer’s child.
There has even been a San Pedro Calungsod miracle that was recorded a while back. The story is about woman who miraculously woke up from a coma. The doctor was said to be praying to the young saint and the woman woke up a few moments later. Though she did not know about the saint before the incident, she instantly became a devotee because of this miraculous feat.
He was beatified by Pope John Paul II on March 5, 2000, and was finally canonized by Pope Benedict XVI twelve years later.
If you’ve ever gone on a Cebu tour before, you might have noticed the many designs of the churches in the provinces. Many have a traditional cross-shaped interior, made up of marble and stone. These churches also have a historical significance on the island.
One of these renowned churches is the San Miguel Archangel Parish in Samboan, found near the southern tip of Cebu.
Since the San Pedro Calungsod chapel was built in the 21st century, it has come to follow a number of architectural practices. Its brand new, cutting-edge design makes it the poster child for the many modern churches in the Philippines. It was designed by US-based architect Carlo Arnaiz, using 100 solid walls that make the church look solid on one side, and layered on another.
This is said to pay homage to the artistic side of Cebu, which is constantly producing artists of different fields, from filmmaking to design.
The church is located in an area with so many establishments to be built in the near future, the famous South Road Properties. This is an area that is being developed into another business sector for the city. The chapel is one of the first tourist spots to call this area its home.
The chapel is also located right next to the biggest oceanarium in the Philippines, Cebu Ocean Park. Sundays can be really fun with the family, as you can visit and experience this fantastic tourist spot right after going to mass.
In front of the chapel is also one of the biggest malls in the country, SM Seaside. Visiting this iconic shopping mall has become one of the best things to do in Cebu, especially with the many fun and exciting activities it has to offer. You can do some shopping early in the morning right after the first mass.
The San Pedro Calungsod Chapel is one of the best churches around because of its distance within the city and not to mention its unique architecture. Places like these remind many locals and travelers about the faith that the Cebuanos have. If you are up for some serious church hopping, then this could be a great place to start.