St. James Church and Catholic Rectory

St. James Church and Catholic Rectory

In continuation to my previous post on Dr. Jose P. Rizal’s 154th birthday, here’s another post dedicated to our national hero.  Just a 5 to 8-minute drive away from Rizal Shrine stands the church where Rizal heard mass every Sunday during his exile in Dapitan, the St. James Church and Catholic Rectory.  It is a simple church of unpainted exterior in Baroque-style just like Jimenez’s St. John the Baptist Church.  And it also has a touch of Gothic with the two bell towers by the sides of the crucifix just like the only Catholic church in Vietnam that I just recently visited, the St. Joseph’s Cathedral.

St. James Church and Catholic Rectory1

This is a smaller and humble church compared with the said cathedral that was built by the Jesuits during the Spanish rule in our country in 1871 to honor the town’s patron saint, St. James the Greater.

st. james the greater

It surprised me to see an image of a saint riding on a horse for it was my first time plus, I’m only accustomed to St. Michael with the devil at his foot and Señor Sto. Niño, my childhood saint.

The church’s interior is even simpler with a fascinating ceiling of peach-pink and white tiles.

st. james the greater dapitan
Look up and you’ll  be mesmerized by the hypnotic design and eventually, you’ll get dizzy staring at it.

st. james the greater dapitan1
Simple as it is, there are no great treasures hidden inside the church.

st. james church dapitan
The only treasure is the word of God being preached during mass to the people of Dapitan who had preserved the conservative culture of Filipinos in maintaining peace and order to the silent town.

By the way, across the church is the relief map of Mindanao that was also one of the many projects of Dr. Jose Rizal in Dapitan.  Nowadays, this serves as a plaza where families get together after mass for the corn, samalamig, and balloons for the kids.

mindanao map
Visit the peaceful town of Dapitan this July 25 for its Kinabayo festival in celebration of St. James the Greater’s feast day!

dapitan tour

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