Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Philippine Traditional Church Interior: A Renaissance

After the destruction of beautiful Church Altars, Reredos, Statues, Baldachinos, Pulpits and altering Church interiors dating back to the Spanish era (1521-1898) under the false interpretation of Vatican II, more priests are returning to a more traditional rendition of new church interiors, mixing baroque, rococo, classical and Filipino elements or rehabilitating old and dilapitated ones. An example is the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception of the new Diocese of Pasig, an old Spanish era church at the center of the town. Other churches which have returned to their glory include the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception of the new Diocese of Cubao, a 1950's church built by the SVD Fathers in the neo-baroque manner but destroyed by the same Vatican II minded SVD priests, doing away with the bas-relief altar and replacing it with an eclectic mosaic, an altar table made of glass and the sanctuary redesigned according to the Anglican style.

Thanks to Bishop Ongtioco, frescos, side altars, new reredo main altar, stained glass and goldleafed images have been returned to the church designed by the late Fr. Gabriel Casal, former Benedictine, who was incardinated in the Archdiocese of Manila in 1983. director of the Archdiocesan Archives and the Archdiocesan Museum of the Archdiocese of Manila passed away on June 14 of a heart attack. He was 67.Fr. Casal was director of the National Museum for 14 years until his retirement in October 2001. He was director of the Ayala Museum from 1975 to 1987. More Philippine Church pics to come! The picture below is the late Fr. Gabriel Casal.

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