|Santa Monica Parish Church|
|Location||Poblacion, Angat, Bulacan|
|Architectural type||Church building|
|Archbishop||Luis Antonio Tagle|
|Bishop(s)||Dennis Cabanada Villarojo|
The Santa Monica Parish Church is one of the oldest churches in the province of Bulacan, Philippines, dating back to 1758. It displays Baroque architectural characteristics and features ceiling paintings which resemble those in the Sistine Chapel.
The town of Angat was formerly part of Quingwa, now Plaridel. Angat was oppressed by the town of San Miguel, followed by the town of Bocaue. When Angat became totally separate from Quingwa, it conquered the lands of Norzagaray and Doña Remedios Trinidad.
Founding of the parish
Angat became a parish in 1683, making it the sixth oldest parish in Bulacan. Augustinian priests were in charge of the management of the church. The first Augustinian priest who arrived at Angat was Fr. Juan Morelos in 1684.
The list below presents the succeeding Augustinian parish priests who served the Sta. Monica Parish Church.
|Name||Years of Pastorship|
|Rev. Fr. Nicolas Lopez de Baya||1689 to 1692|
|Rev. Fr. Gabriel de la Fuente||1692 to 1695|
|Rev. Fr. Lorenzo Cueto||1695 -|
|Rev. Fr. Francisco Pingarron||1695 -|
|Rev. Fr. Bernardo dela Iglesia||1695 to 1704|
|Rev. Fr. Jose del Valle||1704 to 1705|
|Rev. Fr. Bernardo dela Iglesia||1705 to 1707|
|Rev. Fr. Lorenzo Cueto||1707 to 1710|
|Rev. Fr. Juan Navarrete||1710 to 1711|
|Rev. Fr. Tomas Quijano||1711 to 1716|
|Rev. Fr. Domingo Diaz||1716 to 1719|
|Rev. Fr. Pedro Orense||1719 to 1722|
|Rev. Fr. Juan Serrano||1722 -|
Augustinian parish priests continued to serve Santa Monica Parish Church until 1898. From 1898 to the present, the parish church has been open for Diocesan priests. Rev. Fr. Mariano de los Reyes became the first Diocesan priest of the parish in 1898.
|Name||Years of Pastorship|
|Rev. Fr. Mariano de los Reyes||1898 -|
|Rev. Fr. Francisco Atro||1898 to 1904|
|Rev. Fr. Jose Paguia||1904 to 1908|
|Rev. Fr. Tomas Chanco||1908 to 1916|
|Rev. Fr. Nicanor Guzman||1916 to 1919|
|Rev. Fr. Pedro Domingo||1919 -|
|Rev. Fr. Deogracias Javier||1919 to 1921|
|Rev. Fr. Vicente Fernandez||1921 to 1922|
|Rev. Fr. Simplicio Fernandez||1922 to 1932|
|Rev. Fr. Pedro Marcelino||1932 to 1945|
|Rev. Fr. Casimiro Alvarez||1945 to 1946|
|Rev. Fr. Gabino Baluyot||1946 to 1952|
|Rev. Fr. Lazaro Ochuga||1952 to 1959|
|Rev. Fr. Leon Lopez||1959 -|
|Rev. Fr. Serafin Riego de Dios||1959 to 1970|
|Rev. Fr. Melchor Barcelona||1970 to 1982|
|Rev. Fr. Macario Manahan||1982 to 1989|
|Rev. Fr. Walderedo Castillo||1989 to 1990|
|Rev. Fr. Ernesto Mendoza||1990 to 1991|
|Rev. Fr. Jose Salvador Viola||1991 -|
|Rev. Fr. Domingo Salonga||1991 to 2003|
|Rev. Fr. Virgilio Cruz||2003 to 2013|
|Rev. Msgr. Angelito Santiago||2013–present|
The following parish priests led the construction and redevelopment of the Santa Monica Parish Church.
Fr. Juan Morelos
- He was the first builder of the first church and the convent.
Fr. Gregorio Giner
- He built the new parish church with stronger materials in 1758. It was finished in 1773.
Fr. Joaquin Calvo
- He completed the facade in 1802 and was also responsible for the construction of the slender tower.
Fr. Ignacio Manzanares
- He restored the convent which was also damaged by the 1863 earthquake.
Santa Monica de Angat Parish Church was designed in Baroque architectural style. This could be verified with the existence of 18 adobe posts, along with eight windows. Windows, statued niches, and spaces between horizontal string courses, dividing the front facade into three parts, were ornamented with floral carvings. Also, foliated crestings on the raking course of the pediment were used as an added ornamentation.
Ceiling art paintings
The ceiling paintings within the interiors of the parish church resemble the ceiling paintings of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican, Rome. History of Christianity in the Philippines and culture of Angat, Bulacan such as simbang gabi, Flores de Mayo, prusisyon ng Santissimo Sakramento, and fiesta were also incorporated within the ceiling paintings.
The ceiling paintings were started by G. Rene Robles in 1998 and finished by G. Jess Robles in 2002, in accordance with the order of Fr. Memeng.
Several interventions were conducted under the administration of Rev. Msgr. Angel Santiago, who was ordained as the parish priest of Santa Monica de Angat on November 15, 2013. They include:
- Addition of six wooden posts and carvings at the retablo
- Addition of floral designs and carving of Kordero at the front side and carvings of Santa Maria, San Jose, Santa Monica, and San Agustin at the sides of the Kordero
- Addition of carvings - carvings of chalice and host at the front side and carvings of San Markos, San Juan, San Mateo, and San Lukas at the sides of the altar
- Replacement of marble flooring of the sanctuary with black and white granite floor tiles
- Modification of staircase going up to the sanctuary
- "Sta. Monica Church, Angat, Bulacan". October 31, 2014.
- "Santa Monica de Angat, The Official Website of Sta. Monica Parish, Angat, Bulacan, Philippines". October 31, 2014.
- Alarcon, Norma (2008). Philippine architecture during the pre-Spanish and Spanish periods. UST Publishing House.
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