E Ca Tatacut
Nang: Louie Aldrin L. Bartolo

E ca tatacut
Ala cung marinat a balacan
Nune busilac a pamicasuiu
Ampo tuneng sampat a tula

E ca tatacut
Era ca ibili qng aclis
Era ca ibili qng ligalig
Era ca ibili qng lungcut

E ca tatacut
Yca mu ing canacung liag
Yca mu ing canacung isnaua
Yca mu ing canacung sampat

E ca tatacut
Era ca paburen qng antac 
Masqui manabu cu qng casaquitan
Angga qng tauli cung pangisnaua

Photo Credits:



Nung Ninu Ca Man
Nang: Louie Aldrin L. Bartolo

Nung ninu ca man
Tanggapan ra ca qng bie cu
Alang taung milalang qng yatu
Na casing pante ning Dios

Aliua mu ing santing ing magdala
Nune ing ganaca mu ing magtas
Lalawan cu man ing cecang santing
Lalu cung paniglon ing cayapan mu

Matula cu qng masuelu mung mata
Cumabie cu qng mayumu mung timan
Metagkil cu qng mayap mung gamat
Gamat na tune masabal at ayasahan 

Nung sana ica na ing panayan cu
Ipasiag cu ing pilub luban cu queca
Igulisak cu ing lagyu mu qng sabla
At isalicut da ca qng pusu cu capilan pa man

Photo Credits:



All we know that agriculture is very important in every aspect of our lives. It provides food and even economic benefits. Thus, the insular government of the Philippines supported agricultural education. They established agricultural schools in some provinces in the Philippines. We are lucky that they revitalized the existing agricultural experiment station located in the foothills of Mt. Arayat in Magalang. They decided to put up a school way back in 1901 but it was only in 1918 when it was formally implemented. The American authorities put up Pampanga Agricultural School and later it was renamed into Pampanga Agricultural High School which is known today as Pampanga State Agricultural University. In an news account according to the local Spanish language periodical, La Vanguardia; many students are attracted to pursue agricultural education. And many of them are came from different provinces in the Philippines. As stated by the periodical published in June 21, 1934:

"Surpassing the enrollment record last year, the Pampanga Agricultural High School's enrollment had been increased due to a new trend. The students are preferred to take practical studies than academic studies. The registration of the new students was extended until the 25th day of this month, and it will expected that more students are matriculated in this school than last year. The unexpected increase of enrollment in the agricultural school of this province; seems to indicate that many parents are sending their children to this school so that their children can attend practical studies; and academic studies seem don't produce satisfactory results. And despite of economic crisis that affected in the neighboring provinces, which the province of Pampanga is still unaffected; parents are convinced, that in order to ensure the empowerment of their children and to promote economic development of the province. And this is also the best way to make their children to learn and perfect themselves in the work for the stable economic of the province and for the whole country. This is verified by the fact that the enrollment in the high schools in Bacolor and San Fernando is lower compared to last year.    

Photo Credits:



La Agricultura Atrae a Muchos en la Pampanga, La Vanguardia, Thursday, June 21, 1934, Manila page 3. 



Aside from rich historical events happened in Magalang, the town itself had experienced several paranormal activities. There are several stories that ordinary Magaleños experienced paranormal activities. Some of these are came from our forebears who experienced also the same activities. In the latest publication of the Center of Kapampangan Studies' magazine Singsing, which they focused on paranormal activities in Pampanga, i contributed two articles that pertains to the paranormal activities in various places in Magalang. The most popular of them is the Magalang Elementary School. 

We all know that Magalang Elementary School popularly known as Central, is one of the center of paranormal stories that every people told. The school itself was established in 1901 by a Thomasite, Mr. William S. Irey. The present site was acquired in 1915 and it is still occupied until present. However, when Japanese occupied Magalang in 1942. Several big houses and offices including the school was converted either military or civilian garrisons. The school was made into military garrison, hospital and later, an execution grounds. Several prisoners were executed and buried in the school premises. After the war, several paranormal stories were mushroomed about the school. Students, teachers and administrators experienced different paranormal activities especially in old school buildings like Gabaldon and Industrial Arts buildings. One account tells that a apparition of a former administrator was saw dancing in Gabaldon building premises. Another apparition of a black lady was also experienced in Industrial Arts building. The black lady was saw by the students and teachers sitting on its teacher's table. The huge narra tree on the Science garden was believed to be the house of black dwarfs; where my cousin was "played" by the black dwarfs, but later it was leaved by the black dwarfs with the help of a faith healer. The offices and classrooms are also subjected to several paranormal stories. A young girl was spotted in former district office and a young boy was roaming inside the principal's office. These are some stories that myself couldn't yet completed due to numerous claims and accounts that students, teachers, administrators and even parents that they shared to me. 

In my present teaching station in Sta Cruz Elementary School, there are several paranormal accounts that some students shared to me. In Home Economics building, some students spotted a apparition of a former teacher who they saw hanged and her body was bloodied in the Home Economics comfort room! And even my classroom itself was subject to some accounts too! One of my former students spotted a black nun was seating on my teacher's table! And sometimes, that black nun was roaming around our vegetable garden just behind of my classroom! In the Industrial Arts building, an apparition of an old woman was took placed during my first teaching years in our school. It was around the afternoon and i'm finished wrote my lesson plan, suddenly an old woman appeared on the window and she even calling me! After a second, the old woman suddenly disappeared. 

In the beautiful mansion of Dr. Andres J. Luciano in the town proper of Magalang, paranormal activities in that mansion was also observed. An account of Mrs. Teresita Suba, a former caretaker of the mansion revealed some of the paranormal activities in the mansion. One day, she saw the apparition of Dr. Andres J. Luciano together with his family in the mansion's windows! like Beatriz Feliciano de Luciano, his second wife; and his children, Amado Henry, Aristedes, Angeles and Maria Elvira. During the war, the mansion was robbed by the guerrillas. In the 2005 movie Nasaan Ka Man, the setting was shoot in the mansion premises, where the actress Claudine Baretto experienced paranormal activity where in a scene that the actress' hair strand was raised without any force!  

Lastly, a known creature, Kalaryut was subject to different stories that even our forebears eventually passed to their grandchildren. In a sleepy sitio Mapaco in barrio San Francisco, where the kalaryut is roaming. According to some accounts, kalaryut is a tall creature but it has chain knuckles on his legs and had huge feet. Sometimes, it will transform into different animals like become a pig, duck and a chicken. In daytime, it will transform into a stranger. There are also signs that kalaryut is in your premises; one sign is that you will hear a chain knuckles that will cross your rooftop, and other one is you will hear a whisper from an unknown person. There are different stories that pertains to the kalaryut, according to my grandmother, Adoracion Mamangun Canlas, 72, when she was still young, she will go home in Mapaco together with his aunt, Eusebia Dayrit Cabrera fondly known as Apung Biang; and suddenly, she saw a huge pig trailing many ducks. She eventually asked his aunt about she spotted, but his aunt covered her eyes for not to scare and she told her that it is the kalaryut! My mom, Cecilia Lacson Bartolo, 54, experienced also the presence of kalaryut during her childhood days. One evening, she and his siblings are sleeping in the house of Apung Biang. Eventually she and his siblings were scared after a sound of chain knuckles crossed the rooftop of the house. Apung Biang, who had third eye or sixth sense scolded the creature to leave the house because her grandchildren are scared. Suddenly, the kalaryut left. A relative of my grandmother, known for his bravery challenged the kalaryut, who was transformed into a human carrying a bunch of eggplants. After he challenged a duel, the kalaryut eventually left and the bunch of eggplants fell on the ground!  

There are some paranormal stories and accounts that had been subjected to every discussion, but on thing is for sure, we are still living on the earth will full of mysteries. 

Photo Credits:



Bartolo, Louie Aldrin L., The Haunted Elementary School in Magalang, Singsing, Paranormal Pampanga, Holy Angel University, Juan D. Nepomuceno Center of Kapampangan Studies, Angeles City, 2017, page 47.  

Bartolo, Louie Aldrin L., Kalaryut in Magalang, Singsing, Paranormal Pampanga, Holy Angel University, Juan D. Nepomuceno Center of Kapampangan Studies, Angeles City, 2017, page 54.  


Torre Heliografico at Sta Cruz, Magalang, Pampanga

Torre Heliografico is one of the part of my childhood memories. When i was still young, i saw a tall structure in barrio Sta Cruz which make me curious. One day, i asked my former school service driver of what is that tower. He told me that was a former sugar boiling tower or known as bornal or imburnal. He told me that this tower once produces muscovado sugar and well known sweetener, panotsa. Another tower with the same structure is located in barrio San Isidro. The tower marked the location of the former farmland of my late grandfather who later sold the land to the Cariyana Monastery. However, when i first met Dr. Lino L. Dizon in 2011, he told me that those towers are former communication towers built during the Spanish period! He told me about their findings together with Mr. Joel P. Mallari who they conducted they comprehensive study of the towers in 2006. The story of these magnificent towers began during the revolutionary period.

Torre Heliografico at Cariyana Monastery compund

Those towers are built upon the orders of Spanish general Ricardo Monet in 1897. Those towers are made to send signals by using mirrored devices in Morse Code by flashing reflected sun rays to a another station. Heliograph describe that an instrument constructed with small mirrors made o turn upon both a horizontal and vertical axis, mounted upon a tripod, so arranged as to make the flashes appear and disappear in rapid succession, is to a limited extent use in the army; and by its messages may be transmitted much faster than with flags or torches, and can be used at longer ranges. The towers helped the Spanish army to destroy the revolutionary forces in Camansi in Mt. Arayat led by General Francisco Macabulos. Many towers are built encircling the towns of Magalang, and others in Mabalacat and Concepcion, Tarlac. After the revolution, these towers were abandoned and destroyed by natural calamities and treasure hunting. At present, only two towers are only remained intact. One in barrio Sta Cruz and in barrio San Isidro inside the premises of Cariyana Monastery. Recently, the towers declared as Important Cultural Properties by the National Museum of the Philippines.  

Photo Credits:

Torre Heliografico at barrio Sta Cruz; photo by Joel Pabustan Mallari, taken in 2006. 

Torre Heliografico at barrio San Isidro in Cariyana Monastery; photo taken in 2017 by Leo Villacarlos. Retrieved at iorbitnews.com. 


Dizon Lino L., 2008, Alaya, Kapampangan Research Journal; Juan D. Nepomuceno Center of Kapampangan Studies, Holy Angel University, Angeles City, pages 151-152, 193-194. 


Members of Mountain Side Club Standing (L-R):
Francisco Gamboa, Enrique Baluyut, Dr. Claro Ayuyao, Onofre Lacson
Nicasio Lacson and Onofre Mercado. Sitting (L-R):
Maria Elvira Luciano, Avelina Laxamana, Remedios Santos, Gilda Dizon,
Paz Gueco, Rosario Luciano and Rafaela Sanchez
Members of local elites in Pampanga are known for their stunning beauty, like woman would flaunt their best jewelry, gowns, and ternos, and men were would elegantly dress in their formal attire, and dance the night away. According to John Larkin, town and provincial social clubs demonstrated how the native upper class flourished under the new regime. These organizations are exclusive to the elites, provided among other things an opportunity for young single adults to socialize with and meet others of the same age and class. He added that Kapampangan elite turned their attention to peer group organizations, politics and extra political acivities. They resolved many if their economic and political problems by banding together into various agricultural organizations and political parties. Some examples of social groups like Young Generation in Macabebe, Kundiman and K ning K in Angeles, El Circulo Pampangueño, Club Limbangan, Ing BarangayClub Cervantino de San Fernando, Vinta Fernandina and El Circulo Fernandino in San Fernando, Thomasian in Sto Tomas, Masaya in Arayat, Batu Balani, Phi Beta and Maligaya in Guagua, Club Batala, Matula, Four Scathers, Circulo Escenico, Aficionados de Bacolor and Mekeni Club in Bacolor, Sporting Club in Candaba and Ing Masibucan in Concepcion, Tarlac. In Magalang, there are some various social elite clubs formed in the late 20s until early 30s. The examples of social elite clubs formed in Magalang are:

Standing (L-R):
Dr. Andres J. Luciano, Belen Gueco, Generosa Dizon, Filomena Baluyut
Arsenia Calma, Maria Feliciano, Florencia Feliciano and Rosa Luciano.
a. Mountain Side Club

Mountain Side Club was formed in 1928. This social elite club was the most prominent in Magalang in its heyday. The annual ball of this club was held in every last week of April or early week of May; and this was one of the kind in Magalang and in whole Pampanga. The venue of the ball was held either in the Magalang Auditorium or in the town plaza. It was reported by the Spanish daily, La Vanguardia that the 1933 ball, celebrated its fifth anniversary and the officers of the club are: Francisco Gamboa, president; Carina L. Luciano, vice president; Carolina P. Feliciano, treasurer and Ernesto Dizon, secretary. The guest of the April 16, 1933 ball, are the former members who are newly weds like Architect Fernando H. Ocampo and Lourdes M. Luciano; Jose Gueco and Patricia Lopez; Paul V. Limjengco and Humildad Wijangco; Dr. Conrado D. Ayuyao and Josefina Rodrigo (sister of former senator Francisco "Soc" Rodrigo); Raul Tecson and Virgilia Luciano; Florentino Sazon and Ocilia Lacson; Rafael Lazatin and Loreto P. Feliciano; and Emilio B. Lacson and Atanasia P. Lacson; plus with distinguished guests from Manila like 1929 Señorita Filipinas; Ms. Engracia Laconico, 1932 Señorita Filipinas; Ms. Emma Zamora and 1933 Señorita Filipinas; Ms. Pacita de los Reyes. Some prominent politicians are also distinguished guests in this annual ball like, Justice and Mrs. Jose Abad Santos, Senators Sotero Baluyut and Senator Benigno Aquino, Sr. and their wives, Pampanga governor Pablo Angeles David and Pasudeco President and Mrs. Jose de Leon.

Guests of Mountain Side Club: Sitting (L-R)
Doña Trinidad de Leon-Roxas, Dr. and Mrs. Jose del Rosario,
Senator Benigno Aquino, Sr. and Doña Aurora Aquino
In 1934 annual ball, it was more sophisticated with spectacular guests from the fields of politics and business. The ball was held in a constructed auditorium in town plaza decorated with poly-chrome lights. The lounge was painted with Japanese summer scenes with Japanese lanterns, gave more color to the lounge. The new officers of the club are, Dr. Claro D. Ayuyao, president, Gilda Dizon de Genuino, vice president, Rafaela Sanchez, treasurer and Nicasio L. Lacson, secretary. The distinguished guests of this annual ball are: Doña Trinidad de Leon-Roxas, wife of future president Manuel A. Roxas, Senator and Mrs. Benigno Aquino, Sr., Senator and Mrs. Sotero Baluyut, Justice Eduardo Gutierrez David, 1934 Miss Philippines, Clarita Tan Kiang, 1930 Miss Philippines, Monina Acuña and 1931 Miss Philippines Engracia Laonico, Pampanga Governor and Mrs. Pablo Angeles David, and many others came from distinguished families from different towns of Pampanga. In the same year also, the club was restructured into two groups, the Junior Mountain Side Club and Senior Mountain Side Club. The junior group held an spectacular Balintawak dance ball held at the residence of Catalina A. Gueco.

Ladies of Mountain Side Club, standing (L-R):
Filomena Baluyut, Paciencia Gomez, Rosario Luciano, Monina Acuña,
Belen Gueco, Clarita Tan Kiang, Engracia Laconico, Gilda Dizon and Fe Lagdameo
The 1935 annual ball of the club was held in Magalang Auditorium. The music ball was played by Orquesta Ylaya, and the distinguished guests of the ball are: future president Sergio Osmeña, Don Honorio Ventura, Jose Fausto and members from distinguished families came from Pampanga, Bulacan, Tarlac, Nueva Ecija and Manila. The club awarded Gloria S. Dizon as the best mestisa costume while Lucy Pamintuan was awarded as the best European costume. The officers of the club are Amado Luciano, president, Rita Gueco , vice president, Dr. Salvador Gueco, secretary and Estrella Wijangco, treasurer. In 1936 annual ball, the ball was mostly organized by the Junior Mountain Side Club with the cooperation of Senior Mountain Side club. The organizers are Gertrudes Gueco, Josefina Luciano, Rosario Tumang, Consuelo Wijangco, Catalina Gueco, Purita Mercado, Virgilio Lacson, Wilson Gueco, Isidoro Chancoco, Martin Mercado, Ernesto Dayrit and Orencio Gueco. The theme of the ball was Dance in a Rose. The ladies wore pink ternos and the orchestra played special repertoire like Rose Marie, The Rose in Hair, Rose of the Rancho, So Red the Rose, Roses in the Rain, Moonlight and Roses, I Sent My Love With Rose, Rosa Mia, Roses of Picardy, You Gave Me A Rose and many others. Lucy Pamintuan and Filomena Baluyut won special prizes in this ball. The annual balls of Mountain Side Club was temporarily halted during the Japanese period. It was resumed after the war. During the 50s annual balls, the distinguished guests of Mountain Side Club are future president Diosdado P. Macapagal, future first lady Imelda Romualdez Marcos, Rogelio dela Rosa and other big stars from business and movie industries. The Mountain Side Club marked its end in 1963, after an incident when the alleged Huks assassinated Mayor Benedicto T. Dayrit in the annual ball of the club in December 28, 1963. After that incident, the prestigious Mountain Side Club never recovered from the shocks of Huk terror. In recent years, some of the prominent Magaleños attempted to revive this prestigious club, but failed.

b. Ing E-Malulumpawi

This small elite club was founded by Justice Conrado R. Gwekoh. The Spanish daily La Vanguardia reported that this club organized a splendid grand ball in the municipal hall of Magalang for the newly bar passer, the future justice Augusto M. Luciano. This grand ball was held on November 4, 1933 and their guests are: Delfina Luciano, Belen Gueco, Rosa Luciano, Filomena Baluyut, Felisa Lauchengco, Arsenia Calma, Carolina Vega, Miguela Navarro, Rafaela Sanchez, Angela Manaloto, Luzvimind Gwekoh, Arcadia Manaloto, Potenciana Santos, Magdalena Ayuyao, Magdalena Navarro, Olimpia Santos, Nunilon Ayuyao, Justina Santiago, Remedios Santos, Isabel Trinidad, Jose F. Luciano, Florencio L. Tumang, Isabelo Sanchez, Silvestre Cosio, Jose D. Feliciano, Jose M. Navarro, Raymundo Sanchez, Eladio A. Santos, Aristedes Luciano, Dominador Tumang, Jesus Gueco, Juan Gamboa, Benjamin Gwekoh, Manuel Tumang, Dr. Miguel Dayrit, Dr. Claro Feliciano, Dr. Claro Ayuyao, Atty. Isidoro Ayuyao, Atty. Jose C. Morales, Atty. Artemio Vega, Atty. Gil B. Galang, Atty. Silvestre Punzalan, Silvestre Bautista, Marcos Valencia, Demetrio Lacsamana and others. The fate of this group is still unknown.

c. Ing Maldang Caladua

This small elite club was founded by the prominent elite members of Magalang. This club was probably founded in 1934. The managers of this club are Francisco Gamboa and  Fe Laureano Lacson. A noted spectacular grand ball was organized on New Year's Eve in 1935. The venue of this grand ball was held in the lounge of municipal hall. The front of the municipal hall was decorated with hundreds of poly-chrome lights with balloons, confetti, trumpets and hats. This ball invited various personalities in Pampanga and neighboring provinces to witness the lavish party that promised to "eclipse the whole town".  The organizers are the leading upper society members of Magalang like Dr. Salvador Gueco, Dr. Servillano Ayuyao, Dr. Claro Feliciano, Emilio B. Lacson, Raymundo Sanchez, Florencio Tumang and Crispulo Santos. The ladies committee are composed of Rosario Luciano, Domitila Mercado, Magdalena Ayuyao, Eugenia Lising, Luzvimind Gwekoh and Filomena Baluyut.

d. El Club S.O.S 

This small elite club was founded in barrio Tinabang (Sto Rosario) in Magalang. The only noted party organized by this club was held in barrio fiesta on May 28, 1935. The party was held in the Sto Rosario Elementary School premises decorated with lush foliage and lovely flowers. The party music was played by the Melody Boys orchestra. The organizers of this ball was mostly members of Mountain Side Club. The committee was composed of Domitila Mercado, Felicidad de Jesus, Adela Contreras, Felicidad Tumang, Purita Dizon, Soledad Datu, Rafaela Sanchez, Purita Tiglao, Dr. Claro Ayuyao, Nicasio Lacson, Rustico Navarro, Ernesto Dizon, Salvador Datu, Martin Mercado, Onofre Lacson and Francisco Jocson.

Photo Credits:

Members of Mountain Side club: De la esplendida fiesta del Mountain Side Club, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, May 4, 1935.

Second Photo: En la suntuosa fiesta del Mountain Side club, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, April 11, 1934.

Guests of Mountain Side club: Un notable acontecimiento social en Pampanga, Seccion de Rotograbado, La Vanguardia, Manila, April 14, 1934.

Beautiful Ladies in Mountain Side club: Un notable acontecimiento social en Pampanga, Seccion de Rotograbado, La Vanguardia, Manila, April 14, 1934.


Playgrounds of the Kapampangan Elite by Ivan Anthony Henares, A Tale of Two Cities, Singsing, Juan D. Nepomuceno Center of Kapampangan Studies, Holy Angel University, Angeles City, page 116.

For Mountainside Club:

Mountain Side Club en su 5.0 año de vida, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, April 5, 1933 page 5.

Ochocientas personas concurren el baile by P.G. Bustos, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, April 11, 1934 page 5.

Otra fiesta del Mountain Side Club, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, June 4, 1934, page 5.

Muchos de Manila asisten al baile en Magalang, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, May 3, 1935, page 5.

"Dance in Rose", con un repertorio especial de piezas bailables sera la proxima fiesta del "Side Club", Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, May 21, 1936, page 5.

For Ing Maldang Caladua:

Animado baile de dado el pueblo de Magalang, Portavoz de las Provincias, La Vanguardia, Manila, November 6, 1934, page 2.

Baile en Magalang, La Vanguardia, Manila, December 14, 1934, page 7.

Rumbosa fiesta Navidad en Magalang, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, December 26, 1934, page 5.

Sensacional despedida de año de la Pampanga, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, December 28, 1934, page 5.

For Ing E-Malulumpawi:

Homenaje a un nuevo abogado de la Pampanga, Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, November 11, 1933 page 7.

For El Club S.O.S.:

El Club S.O.S., Pagina Social, La Vanguardia, Manila, May 27, 1935 page 5.


Martyrdom of St. Bartholomew the Apostle 

St. Bartholomew the Apostle or also known as San Bartolome Apostol is the patron saint of Magalang. Every August 24, we celebrate his feast day; commemorating his sacrifices and martyrdom to spread the good news of our Lord. But, who is St. Bartholomew? How he was one of the twelve apostles of the Lord? According to Biblical narratives especially in John 1:43-51, Bartholomew was known also as Nathanael. His connection to the Lord started when his friend Philip who later become also one of the apostles; told him, "We have found the one whom Moses wrote about in the Book of the Law and whom the prophets also wrote about". Nathanael, known for being frank and skeptic was attracted by Philip's remark. "Can anything good come from the Nazareth?". Neverless, Philip persuaded Nathanael to see Jesus; and when Jesus see Nathanael, he told that he is the "the true Israelite, incapable of deceit". Then Nathanael asked Jesus, "How did you know me?". Jesus answered that he saw under the fig tree before Philip called him. Then Nathanael told Jesus, "You are the son of God, and king of Israel". Jesus told Nathanael that "You will see greater things than these".  Then Nathanael or Bartholomew started follow Jesus. When the apostles commissioned, Bartholomew and Judas Thaddaeus introduced Christianity to Armenia. He converted Polymius, king of Armenia to Christianity. Astyages, Polymius brother consequently ordered Bartholomew's execution. According to traditions, he was flayed alive, and beheaded. Other sources told that he was even crucified downward.

Image of San Jose (left) and the original image of
San Bartolome Apostol (right)
(San Bartolome Parish, Magalang, Pampanga)

When the Augustinians established Magalang in April 30, 1605, it was placed under the protection of San Bartolome Apostol. Many years had past, Magaleños revered San Bartolome as their protector during revolts, wars and calamities. As remarked by Louis A. Stone, an American soldier of Company I, 41st Infantry stationed in Magalang church convent in 1901, he observed the sacredness of Magaleños during the feast of San Bartolome. He remarked that, "Nothing much of interest happened in San Pedro de Magalang, until the twenty fourth of August, then, there came a sacred celebration of St. Bartholomew's day by the natives of this little mountain town. Long day before, they started their music and processions all over the town. Being assisted by all natives around the town and the nearby villages, they had been preparing for this grand feast for several days. And when the time came for the celebration, they were ready. After marching around the town for a while, and playing their national airs, they repaired to the church and there, went through a solemn service for an hour or two, in memory of their departed saint. After which they all went to their homes of their friends, where the fattened calf had been killed, and the feast was consumed with considerable appetite ". 

 Image of San Bartolome Apostol
located in San Bartolome Chapel, San Bartolome,
Concepcion, Tarlac.
San Bartolome's old image in San Bartolome Church in Magalang was carved during the administration of Fr. Fernando Vasquez, OSA, who was credited for the installation of finishing touches of the church. The image itself was formerly located in the main altar of the church. However, due to preservation, it was placed in the old baptistery of the church. The features of this image are the apostle itself is holding a knife was said to be used in flaying his skin, and a bible symbolizing its mission to carry the good news of the Lord. The old image of San Bartolome in barrio San Bartolome, Concepcion, Tarlac is said to be the original image of the old Magalang church located in the same place, and the former earned the moniker as balen melacuan. According to a popular account, the said image was prevented by the old residents of San Bartolome to be brought by the group of settlers, transferring the town proper to the present site in barrio San Pedro in 1863. Thus, the image remained in barrio San Bartolome until present. Its chapel was made up of stones taken from the old ruins of old Magalang church flooded by the disastrous flood in 1863. The features of the image are same with the old image of San Bartolome in Magalang, however, it has a bronze chain on his hand together with the bible and he standing above the falling Satan. 

Repository bearing the relics of San Bartolome Apostol
located in San Bartolome Parish, Magalang

San Bartolome's relics are located in different parts of Europe. His large skin and many bones are initially located in the Cathedral of St. Bartholomew the Apostle in Lipari, Sicily; however they were transferred in Basilica of San Bartolomeo in Benevento, Italy. A small part of relics were given by Emperor Otto II to Rome and it was kept in the basilica of San Bartolomeo, all'Isola in Rome. A small relic of San Bartolome was recently enshrined in San Bartolome Parish in Magalang last July 21, 2017, and it was the first San Bartolome church all over the Philippines had this sacred relic. Miracles are attributed to San Bartolome in association of heavy objects. It was credited also for saving many lives in Magalang during Japanese occupation. San Bartolome is also the patron saint of tanners, shoemakers, butchers, and even persons with neurological diseases. San Bartolome together with San Judas Tadeo is the patron saint of Armenia. In the Philippines, aside from Magalang, the city of Malabon; Catbalogan, Samar; San Leonardo, Nueva Ecija and the small barrios of San Bartolome in Sta. Ana, Pampanga and San Bartolome, Sto Tomas, Pampanga is under the patronage also of San Bartolome. Some works of art are dedicated to San Bartolome. The famous is the masterpiece of Michaelangelo, The Last Judgement in Sistine Chapel, Vatican; where the image of San Bartolome was painted and he was holding a knife and his whole flayed skin bearing the likeness of Michaelangelo. The biggest and mellowest San Bartolome bell of San Bartolome Church in Magalang was also dedicated by the parish priest of Magalang, Fr. Fernando Vasquez, OSA, to San Bartolome crafted by Hilario Sunico in 1890.  

Photo Credits:


The remaining photos are came from the author's personal camera shots.


Saint Bartholomew the Apostle skinned alive for spreading his faith by Corazon Damo Santiago, www.businessmirror.com.ph; issued, August 28, 2014.

Stone, Louis A., Two Years in the United States Volunteer Army, Or Around the World Under the Stars and Stripes, Webster Country Times, Clay Kentucky, 1901. page 65.