After spending some time in Orion Church (Check : San Miguel Arcangel Church) we headed to our next destination, the Our Lady of Pillar Parish in Pilar, Bataan. As you see, the town itself is named after the miraculous image of Nuestra Señora Del Pilar (Our Lady of the Pillar). Pilar was previously a part of Pampanga until it became an independent vicariate and municipality in 1801. To commemorate with the proclamation, a church made from wood and nipa was built on the same year under the patronage of Our Lady of Pillar.
Pilar, Bataan is one of the seven municipalities in the country that was named after the image. It all started when Spaniards discovered this place after arriving in the sitio of Balanga. They were warmly greeted by the natives. The place was named in the honor of the image , hence the town was called “Pilar”(Pillar).
The Stone church, on the other hand was constructed in 1834 and was completely finished in 1885. The revolution in 1898, however, utterly damaged and destroyed the church and the restoration took place til 1966. The church has a very simple architectural design and a very simple facade as well but it has a very unique feature. The belfry of the church is located on top of the main facade. The well preserved adobe structure and the church’s apparent simplicity is actually what makes this church more beautiful.
The image of Our Lady of Pillar on the center of its facade
The belfry. The adobe structure of the church actually reminds me of the Santo Cristo Parish in San Juan Manila (Check Santo Cristo Parish)
The nave of the church
The Main altar
The crucified Christ at the center of the retablo
The image of Our Lady of Pillar of Bataan
Outside the church is a very spacious piece of land. You will also find this huge Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes
There is also a gallery of paintings and images featuring the church and the town’s patroness
The feast day of Pilar, Bataan coincides with the Feast day of the Our Lady of Pillar which is celebrated every 12th of October
How to Get to Our Lady of Pillar Church / Pilar Church in Pilar, Bataan
►If you are coming from Manila, simply take a transit bus bound to Balanga City (Bataan Transit or Genesis Bus – they have terminals in Cubao and Pasay). It’s going to be a 2 to 3 hours ride.
►From the Central Terminal of Balanga, there are jeepneys there that can take you to the church
►If you have better suggestions on how to get here via public transport, feel free to leave a comment below
Where To Stay in Bataan?
There are many cheap and affordable hotels to stay in Bataan which are near to Mt Samat Shrine or other nearby tourist Destination. The Plaza Hotel in Balanga is a perfect choice or if you are looking for a luxurious staycation, you might consider booking rooms in Las Casas Filipinas De Acuzar in Bagac. You can check out list of affordable and cheap hotels in Bataan in TravelBook and see which rooms suits your budget and taste!
After the Pilar Church, we headed next to our next destination as part of our Bataan Pilgrimage tour. We went to the town proper of Balanga and visited the Balanga Cathedral and I will post more details about this church in my next #BataanPilgrimageTour entry.
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