San Diego Pro-Cathedral, Silay City

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The San Diego Pro-cathedral, formerly known as the San Diego Parish Church or the St. Didacus Parish Church before its declaration as a pro-cathedral in 1994, is an early 20th-century church in Silay City, Negros Occidental in the Philippines. It is the only pro-cathedral outside of the national capital of Manila, and is unique in Negros Occidental for being the only church in the province featuring a cupola or dome.HistoryThe parish of Silay was established in 1776 and its first church was built of light materials: bamboo, cogon grass and nipa palm during the time of Gobernadorcillo Alejo Severino's administration. Padre Alejo Ignacio de Molinas, a Spaniard, was its first priest. In 1841, then-parish priest Fr. Eusebio Locsin initiated the construction of a more permanent structure made of stone and wood. The roof was improved through the use of galvanized iron. Further improvements were done but When the revolution broke out in November 5, 1898, the church was left unfinished.In 1925, work began on a grander structure meant to replace the old church. Don Jose R. Ledesma, a resident of Silay and a wealthy sugar baron, donated a substantial portion of the funds needed to build the new edifice. The rest of the money was raised through popular contribution, including fund-raising by schoolchildren.Don Jose Ledesma commissioned an Italian architect, Lucio Bernasconi to design the new church. Bernasconi was also responsible for the design and construction of the Silay Wharf, which was razed by Imperial Japanese soldiers during the Second World War. Bernasconi took the churches in his native Italy as the model for the Silay church. The church's layout is in the shape of a Latin cross, with a cupola rising forty meters above the nave. Construction was completed in 1927, and the new church was inaugurated that same year.
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San Diego Pro-Cathedral Reviews
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  • This is the first pro-cathedral in negros island and it is noted by its perfect dome which is very magnificent. If the photographer is good and will take a picture from the vantage point of the founta...  more »
  • This is the center of Catholic faith in Silay. It is also one of the evidences that Silay is among the Visayas islands that were colonized by the Spaniards. The building of this cathedral is financed ...  more »
  • This place of worship is one of the first structures one notices along the National Highway from Bacolod City and on to Victoria City. It is across the Olympia Public Plaza, where locals relax under t...  more »
Google
  • An historical church, wonderful architecture, where some of my ancestors are buried...
  • the exterior and the interior of the church is really nice. Locals says that it is somewhat similar to that of St. Peter and Paul Cathedral.
  • It has this old feel inside. The dome inside is beautifully painted with images.
  • One of the few churches where i can still see and hear birds inside the church - even during mass. It looks new outside but once you come in, you'll be brought back to the old times.
  • It is always a nice experience to visit a church whenever visiting a new place. 🤗
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