Old churches see influx of pilgrims as Holy Week nears

Local News Official
Local News OfficialSunStar File Photo

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO —Pampanga’s old Roman Catholic churches will once again play host to pilgrims who will visit the province for Lenten retreats and pilgrimages as the Holy Week nears.

This year’s Maleldo or Holy Week will start from March 24 to 30.

Even before the anticipated dates, pilgrims started visiting churches in Guagua, Bacolor, and Santa Rita, particularly those built by early Spanish missionaries.

The pilgrims mostly come from other provinces organized by local tour companies.

The bulk of the tourists are pilgrims from neighboring provinces and local schools.

Just before the pandemic, there was a booming local Lenten pilgrimage movement in Pampanga.

Former Museo Nang Santa Rita de Cascia head Annabelle Abinales said the tourist figures include visitors from the United States, Singapore, Canada, and Hong Kong.

There were also busloads of tourists that visited the facility from the provinces of Cavite, Laguna, Rizal, and Bulacan before the pandemic.

Most of the pilgrims would visit churches in Betis, Guagua, and Lubao.

The old Santa Rita de Cascia Parish Church would benefit from this influx of tourists who would visit the church before returning home to their provinces.

The Museo ning Parokya nang Santa Rita de Cascia is located at the second floor of the old convent building attached to the old parish church.

The building, which was restored in 1994, now houses the historical artifacts, contemporary and antique images, as well as old furnishings of the church and its old rectory.


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