Visita Iglesia is one of the activities of the church in observance of the Lenten season. It is where devotees visit at least seven churches in one day to commemorate the passion and follow the trail of Jesus to the cross. Most parents see this as an opportunity to introduce to their children the value and sacrifice of Christ for the sake of mankind.
Every year, my wife and I have tried to do the Visita Iglesia in a more exciting fashion to make our kids enjoy the activity. On Maundy Thursdays, we travel provinces to visit old and new churches within one day. We devote our Good Fridays and the rest of the weekend to meditation and to a well-deserved rest at home.
Last 2015, the province we chose to visit was Bataan. Bataan is known more for its role in World War II, but it also boasts of notable Spanish colonial influences, such as its centuries-old churches. Let me take you to the churches in our itinerary as it may also guide you in choosing your route when you do Visita Iglesia in the North this coming Holy Week.
1. St. Peter of Verona Church, Hermosa, Bataan
History says that long ago, the people of Hermosa who live near the river found a boat with a statue of a saint inside it. This saint was St. Peter of Verona who later became the patron of this community. St. Peter of Verona Parish Church of Hermosa, Bataan became an independent missionary center in 1756. It features a baroque-style façade with marvelous stained-glasses windows amid the splendor of the ornaments inside the church which brings with it remembrance of the colonial past.