It’s Holy Thursday today and people all around the Philippines including the “generals” of GenSan have started the annual Lenten tradition commonly called “Visita Iglesia”.
According to Pinoy traditions, Catholics must visit at least 7 churches to represent the 7 Great Basilicas of Rome, a practice which started during the time of the beginnings of Christianity to venerate the Blessed Sacraments.
Here in the Philippines, each visit would require a contemplation of the 14 Stations of the Cross, at two (2) stations per church.
Some would go to as many as 14 churches, with each church representing one station.
Unfortunately, General Santos City does not have that much number of churches. As of last count, the Tuna Capital only has 6 churches and parishes, excluding chapels. To make up for the lacking church, the Catholic faithful include the small Chapel inside the Novitiate Compound as part of the “Visita Iglesia” since masses are being said there every Sunday.
Here then are Catholic Churches of GenSan (plus one chapel) which you could visit for your observance of the “Visita Iglesia”.
- Sts. Peter and Paul Parish Church. This is actually GenSan’s oldest church, older than the 50 year-old Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage Parish Church. Located at Lagao Kanan, Barangay Lagao, the church is under the Diocese of Marbel and run by Diocesan priests. The structure has not changed much for the past 30 years or so, just a few minor adjustments were done to fix the rotting parts plus a couple of major paint jobs.
- Santo Nino Parish Church. Located at Barangay Bula, the original home of GenSan’s major fishing industry, this parish church is only 31 years old. Over the years however, due to the magnanimity of its parishioners, who are among the city’s famed fishing magnates, the parish was to able to build, aside from its sail-like designed-church, a separate building for the convent. Look for its replica of the Image of Sto. Nino which is encased in a small wooden boat.
- Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage Parish Church. One of the most beautiful, if not the most beautifully-redesigned house of worship in South Central Mindanao, this one turned 50 last year and is under the care of the Passionist Fathers. Based on Architect Michael Ang’s idea, the renovated church is more spacious and well-illuminated. Strategically located at the heart of downtown GenSan, the best time to visit it for your Visita Iglesia is at night when some of its huge chandeliers and the sky-blue lights of the altar are switched on.
- St. Michael the Archangel Parish Church. This parish is less than 10 years old and yet its huge structure now dominates the skyline of Purok Malakas, owing to the generosity of its parishioners who helped build it from scratch from the time of Fr. Art Pancho, a diocesan priest. It sits at a donated lot along Yumang Street and could be reached by taking a Purok Malakas jeep which could drop you at the corner of Yumang Street where you could take a small tricycle (or tricykad) again.
- Holy Cross Parish Church. A church designed to look like the Bishop’s Miter, this one is administered by the Passionist Congregation. Located at Barangay Calumpang and just across its Retreat Center, the church has the widest structure and most spacious interiors among the churches in GenSan. It’s then safe to say that it is the largest Catholic church in GenSan.
- Our Lady of Fatima Parish Church. The baby of the group, this church is less than a year old since its Canonical Erection last year. Strategically located in a 2-hectare lot at Barangay Fatima by the local government of GenSan, it is still undergoing construction.
- St. Paul of the Cross Novitiate Chapel. Due to the lack of churches in GenSan, this chapel has since time immemorial been part of any family’s Lenten Visita Iglesia. It sits inside the 7-hectare coconut tree-dotted lot of the Passionists along the National Highway where their Novitiate is.
The open-air structure of the Holy Cross Novitiate Chapel along the National Highway
With this note, allow us here at GenSan News Online Mag to greet everyone a blessed and meaningful Holy Week!
Other chapels in GenSan which you could visit are the Sta. Cruz Chapel in Silway beside the Silway Bridge,;the Bo. Obrero Chapel in Bulaong Avenue; the Upper Labangal Chapel in Upper Labangal; the Samaria Cursillo House Chapel along Nunez Street, Purok Malakas, Brgy San Isidro.
Must visit too is the Our Lady of Manaoag Chapel of the Dominican Fathers along Nunez Street Extension, across Malesido HOmes, Barangay San Isidro. Then there is the Fr. Pio Chapel, inside Las Villas de Dadiangas, along Mabuhay Road, Barangay San Isidro, too.
And yes! If you have time to go out of town for a more spiritual setting, head off to the hills of Landan, Polomolok and visit the Chapel of Our Lady of Mt. Matutum Trappistine Monastery. For more info, CLICK HERE.
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Good info about the Gensan Catholic Churches
I am made to believe that the Sta Cruz CHAPEL besides Silway Bridge is not a Roman Catholic Church but an Aglipayan Church
@jerome, there are actually two churches on both sides of Silway River. The one at Silway Sta.Cruz is the Catholic Chapel. The other one across the river which you can reach through Silway Bridge is the Aglipayan Church chapel. 🙂
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hi, today we’ve celebrated the goodness of God which shared to us his begotten son to takes away the sin of the world… as we all catholics as a full Christian, this day represents the forgiveness of sins and the forever love of God to us… Tnx sir avel for the lists of churches to be visited… God Bless to everyone.. (^_^)
there are two new chapels which you can visit too. The Chapel of the Lady of Manaoag (nunez road extension) and the Chapel of Padre Pio (inside Las Villas de Dadiangas)
God Bless to all my Christian brothers and sisters….
sir avel, how about the sta cruz church near the SILWAY bridge po?
NAG iisa ka talaga sir Avel! Truly Generals. Mabuhay ka!
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I’ve been to most of the Churches in GenSan except the last 2. Aawwww. I miss spending holy week there. Never did see a reason to get out of the City during those times.
We have been called a nation of servants as the Israelites were the slaves in Egypt during the time of Moses. Like them, we believe in the Messiah who will free us from bondage. We are an Easter people believing in God’s redemption. We shall overcome one day. Happy Easter everyone.
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This is a great tour of the churches in Gensan. I am always fascinated with churches in the Philippines because of its origin of Christianity, i am not a Catholic but i love going inside churches like these, the best I have so far visited is the Basilica of Sto. Nino in Cebu, so huge yet so crowded that many parishioners hear mass outside.
Thanks for sharing Kuya Avel…
🙂 mapagbigay talaga si bossing.. nung sinabing sana may picture lahat ng simbahan aba’t ito na nga’t may update with pictures.. bravo!
galeng ng post, KUY!!!
happy easter to all!!!
@archmykel, hahaha! Next year na oi. 🙂
include mo na rin ang silway and bulaong chapels 🙂
i was at HOLY CROSS PARISH CHURCH here in calumpang last GOOD FRIDAY…
yes its spacious.ngayon ko lang nalaman its the biggest churh in gensan…
litos last blog post..short hair this summer?
na-guilty tuloy ako that I was not able to do Bisita Iglesia this year.
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ayos ah.. i’ll try to visit those churches,,.. sa davao. marami.. pero nakatatlo lang ako this holy week..
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Happy Easter, everyone!
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wow..ganda na pala ng holy cross parish…its been a while.
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thank you so much for the pictures of gen san churches.
happy easter to you.
kahit super init kahapon…go pa rin kaming pamilya sa pagbisita iglesia and it was worth it… si kuya avel lang tumaas ang bp dahil sa init…
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sana may picture din ang St.Michael Parish Church… 🙂
Thanks for the list, Avel. Not doing the Visita Inglesia this time but I can go and hear masses in those churches in the future. Have a great weekend!
BTW Bariles, ganda ng pagka capture mo ng OLPGV at Sto. Nino church…
Blessed Holy week sa iyo at sa lahat ng generals!!
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This is one of the Holy week activities that I really miss here in the US…kahit kasi Good Friday regular day lang dito. Feel mo lang ang Holy Week pag sa loob ka ng church…
Amies last blog post..My Summit
kuya avel, i think mas maganda ‘pag may pictures po lahat ng churches 🙂 i hope malagyan n’yo po, =P