You Can Now Virtually Travel to Historical Churches Through Online Visita Iglesia
The tradition goes digital
With the rise in COVID-19 in the country, religious gatherings have been put on hold, and for many Catholics, this means skipping most of the traditional ceremonies of Lent. You can, however, still keep your yearly panata alive, as several churches opening their doors to online visitors, especially during Holy Thursday's Visita Iglesia.
If you enjoy a bit of history and old architecture, many of the churches surrounding Laguna de Bai have storied pasts. One example is the San Juan Bautista Church in Calamba. The original structure was built in the 1800s, and is said to be where Jose Rizal was christened. It was destroyed World War II, it was later on rebuilt.
Another is the San Sebastian Parish Church in Lumaban, which was built in 1600, making it the first stone church in Laguna.
These, and several others, are open for a 360 virtual tour this Holy Week. The experience is free for Smart and TNT users until April 4 through the Smart Communication's partnership with the Provincial Government of Laguna, the Laguna Tourism Culture Arts and Trade Office, the Diocese of San Pablo, and the Laguna-based start-up Virtual Reality Travel. You can access these online tours here.
If you're thinking of making donations, several churches and religious organizationsare also accepting monetary gifts through online paying channels, including Paymaya. Here are a few of them:
- Mary Immaculate Parish - Levitown
- Baguio Cathedral
- Basilica Minore del Santo Nino Cebu
- Sacred Heart Cebu
- Saint Joseph the Worker Parish Iloilo
For mass schedules, best visit your chosen church's Facebook pages. Most links are available at Virtual Reality Travel.
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