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The Loon Church Reconstruction and Restoration- Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Bohol Philippines


The Nuestra Señora de la Luz Parish Church (also Our Lady of Light Parish Church), commonly known as Loon Church, was a Roman Catholic Church in the municipality of Loon, Bohol, Philippines, under the Roman Catholic Diocese of Tagbilaran. The parish was established by the Jesuits in 1753. Padre José García commissioned Domingo de Escondrillas to design the original stone church which was built from 1855 to 1864.


The Loon Church Reconstruction and Restoration- Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Bohol Philippines


It was declared as a National Historical Landmark by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines and a National Cultural Treasure by the National Museum of the Philippines.


Loon church building and convent were reduced to rubble when a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck Bohol


The entire church building and convent were reduced to rubble when a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck Bohol and other parts of Central Visayas in October 15, 2013.


The National Museum of the Philippines #NationalMuseumPH is very proud to share here the full-length Turn-Over Video, with English subtitles, of the completely reconstructed and restored Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Loon, Bohol, which was presented during ceremonies that took place on September 7, 2021.


The video, representing a record of a journey and effort of almost eight years since the Bohol Earthquake of October 15, 2013, features the following persons and officials involved with the project (given in order of initial appearance).

- Mr. Reigh Monreal, Cultural Officer of Loon
- Engr. Marina Loquinte, Municipal Disaster and Risk Reduction Management Officer, Loon
- Rev. Fr. Joel Ruyeras, former Parish Priest, Birhen sa Kasilak Parish, Loon
- Most Rev. Leonardo Medroso, Bishop Emeritus of Tagbilaran
- Mr. Jeremy Barns, Director-General of the National Museum of the Philippines
- Hon. Edgardo Chatto, Representative of the 1st District of Bohol and former Provincial Governor
- Hon. Arthur Yap, Provincial Governor and former Representative of the 3rd District of Bohol
- Rev. Fr. Ramon Ruel Tumangday, former Parish Priest, Birhen sa Kasilak Parish, Loon
- Archt. Nelson Aquino, Loon Church Project Head, National Museum of the Philippines
- Ms. Stella Orcullo, Local Volunteer, Loon
- Most Rev. Alberto Uy, Bishop of Tagbilaran
- Engr. Jessie Cervatos and Engr. Serlito Cervatos, 401 Construction and Development Corp.
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The Loon Church Reconstruction and Restoration- Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Bohol Philippines

Finally, after 8 years of grueling, comprehensive planning and execution, the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Luz Parish of Loon has been officially turned over by the #NationalMuseumPH to its legal owner the Diocese of Tagbilaran on September 7, 2021, the eve of the feast of Loon town’s Patron, Our Lady of Light and the nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.


Loon town’s Patron, Our Lady of Light and the nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Declared as a #NationalCulturalTreasure by the National Museum of the Philippines (NMP), this cultural property is among the more than 19 heritage structures damaged by the 7.2 magnitude earthquake

Declared as a #NationalCulturalTreasure by the National Museum of the Philippines (NMP), this cultural property is among the more than 19 heritage structures damaged by the 7.2 magnitude earthquake that hit Central Visayas on October 15, 2013. Considered as the largest and the “crowning glory” of #Recollect architecture in Bohol, #LoonChurch was completely destroyed and left in ruins.


The Loon Church Reconstruction and Restoration- Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Bohol Philippines

Through the collective efforts of both the national and local government units, contractors and stakeholders, the church of the #BirhenSaKasilak has been reconstructed and restored. According to NMP Director-General Jeremy R. Barns, “to be entrusted with this project and successfully implement and complete it has been one of the milestones in the 120-year history of the NMP.”


The Loon Church Reconstruction and Restoration- Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Bohol Philippines

The Loon Church Reconstruction and Restoration- Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Bohol Philippines


Present during the event was the Atty. Edgardo M. Chatto, Representative of Bohol’s 1st Congressional District, Vice-Governor Rene L. Relampagos, together with the majority of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of the province, representing the Governor Arthur C. Yap, and Mayor Elvi Peter L. Relampagos of Loon. The ceremonial turnover of the parish and convent was then followed by the unveiling of the marker of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines as #NationalHistoricalLandmark led by the Chairman Rene L. Escalante.

The Loon Church Reconstruction and Restoration- Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Bohol Philippines


The Loon Church Reconstruction and Restoration- Parish Church of Our Lady of Light (Nuestra Señora de la Luz) in Bohol Philippines

The reconstructed church of Loon was formally accepted by Most Rev. Alberto S. Uy, D.D., Bishop of the Diocese of Tagbilaran together with Loon Parish priest Fr. Desiderio R. Magdoza and Fr. Milan Ted Torralba of the Commission for the Cultural Heritage of the Church. Former Loon parish priests present included Fr. Joel Ruyeras and Fr. Ruel Tumangday. The turnover culminated with the Rite of the Dedication of the Church and Pontifical by Bishop Uy, in thanksgiving of God’s faithfulness to his people, and the success of this project. Viva Birhen sa Kasilak!





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Credits:
Produced by Nataniel Luperte Photography (Panglao, Bohol) and NMP-Bohol
Courtesy of 401 Construction and Development Corporation
© National Museum of the Philippines (2021)

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