It all started in the building of a church made from endemic bamboo. St.Joseph Parish Church of Las Piñas City houses the Las Piñas Bamboo Organ. Father Diego Cera de la Virgen del Carmen of Pampanga, him and the locals started building the church in the late 1700s using adobe rocks.
A sponsored visit with my travel blogger friends made the trip worthwhile. Gani, our knowledgeable guide took us back in time as he told the tale of the world-famous Bamboo Organ.
1970s was the decade which saw the fruition of restoring the bamboo organ. It was shipped all the way to Bonn, Germany in 1973 under Johannes Klais Orgelbau. Two years later, the bamboo organ found its way home. For a bit of history, the person behind this musical legend is Father Diego Cera. He was the first parish priest in Las Piñas. From 1816 to 1824, the bamboo organ was constructed and has gone through a lot of changes since then.
|Adjacent to the church is the 99-year old St.Joseph Academy|
Adjacent to the church is the Antillan House, a former convent. It houses the museum, adoration chapel and souvenir shop. It also serves as the entance to the church loft where the bamboo organ is located.
|Old memorabilia: old cassette tapes to photo books|
|Inside the church|
|The bloggers! Well almost all. 🙂
Standing, L-R: Jun, Rem, Claire, Kenneth, Sir Gani, Gelai, Nil
Sitting, L-R: Javee, Dharzie and me
|A painting by Mr. Jimenez, a local artist
It depicts Las Pinas City’s gems
The preservation of the bamboo organ can be best appreciated by joining the annual International Bamboo Organ Festival celebrated every third week of February. Quoting its official website: The Bamboo Organ Foundation, Inc. is a non-stock non-profit organization founded to preserve and maintain the historic Bamboo Organ. It also engages in the spiritual, educational and social enrichment of the people of Las Piñas. The Foundation organizes the annual International Bamboo Organ Festival held at the Las Piñas Church which has its mark in the international music scene with many foreign artist and musicians participating in this annual event.’
Every place has its piece of history to be proud of. One in which a local can elicit a feeling of national pride and patriotism. This church and the bamboo organ itself is Las Piñas City’s historical soul. I hope its people will quickly realize how blessed they are.