Boac Cathedral

The Immaculate Conception Cathedral Parish (Filipino: Parokyang Katedral ng Kalinis-linisang Paglilihi), commonly referred to as Boac Cathedral, is a Roman Catholic church and cathedral in the town center of Boac, Marinduque, in the Mimaropa region of the Philippines.[1]

Boac Cathedral
Immaculate Conception Cathedral Parish
Parokyang Katedral ng Kalinis-linisang Paglilihi
Diocesan Shrine of Mahal na Birhen ng Biglang Awa
Boac cathedral, Marinduque.jpg
Boac Cathedral in 2020
Boac Cathedral is located in Luzon
Boac Cathedral
Boac Cathedral
Location in Luzon
Boac Cathedral is located in Philippines
Boac Cathedral
Boac Cathedral
Boac Cathedral (Philippines)
13°26′55″N 121°50′30″E / 13.448570°N 121.841630°E / 13.448570; 121.841630Coordinates: 13°26′55″N 121°50′30″E / 13.448570°N 121.841630°E / 13.448570; 121.841630
LocationBoac, Marinduque
Country Philippines
DenominationRoman Catholic
Founded1580, 1792
DedicationImmaculate Conception, Our Lady of Prompt Succor
Functional statusActive
Architectural typeChurch
StyleBaroque, Fortress church
Bishop(s)Marcelino Antonio Maralit

The seat of the Diocese of Boac,[1] the cathedral today is surrounded by its likewise centuries-old defensive walls, and was declared a Philippine Important Cultural Property (ICP) in 2018 by the national museum of the country.[2][3]


A Franciscan missionary, Fray Estevan Ortiz, planted the first cross on Marinduque island in 1579. Monserrat de Marinduque, the first visita, (now Boac), was established with Fray Alonzo Banol as its minister a year later in 1580.

The Franciscans ceded the administration of the island in 1618 to the Archbishop of Manila, Miguel García Serrano who then entrusted the island to the Society of Jesus. In 1621, the Jesuits assumed the spiritual administration of the island. The church was constructed facing east with its rear overlooking the lower town, called labak by the natives in 1756. It was seen to serve as a refuge of the townspeople against pirate attacks prevalent in the era, in addition to its purpose as a place for worship when it was finally built in 1792.[2][3]

Local accounts include that once, when the townspeople were being attacked by Moro pirates, while taking refuge within the church's walls, they prayed fervently to their patroness, the Immaculate Conception, for salvation from the attack. Oral tradition also holds that while the natives were being killed, they are all praying when a supposed apparition of Mary with outstretched hands drove away the intruders. This event led to the devotion to Mahal na Birhen ng Biglang Awa (Our Lady of Prompt Succor) as their patroness's new title.[2]

In 1899, the flag for the revolution in the Philippines brought by Canuto Vargas was blessed in the cathedral.[4] in 1958, the venerated image of Mahal na Birhen ng Biglang Awa was canonically crowned and is considered as the patroness of the province.[2] The historical marker installed at the cathedral states that a Boac parish priest named Saturnino Trinidad helped Colonel Maximo Abad surrender to the Americans under H.H. Bandholtz.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception Boac, MARINDUQUE, MIMAROPA, Philippines". GCatholic. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  2. ^ a b c d "Boac cathedral is 'greatest monument' of faith, history". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  3. ^ a b "Tagalog News: Boac Cathedral binigyan ng pagkilala ng National Museum". PNA. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  4. ^ a b "MARKER AT MARINDUQUE BOAC CATHEDRAL, THE FORTRESS CHURCH". LakadPilipinas. Retrieved March 3, 2021.

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