|Image of San Agustin of San Agustin, Magalang, Pampanga|
Magaleños are known for their deep religiosity and faith. That's why Magaleños religiously follow every beliefs and traditions which was entrenched to their faith ever since. If Angeles had the miraculous, Apu Mamacalulu, Magalang had also the miraculous San Agustin. The saint itself was known as one of the Doctors of the Church; and also, the patron saint of religious order, Augustinians; who brought Christianity to the Philippines and also, the religious missionaries assigned, and eventually founded Magalang during Spanish period. The miraculous story of the image of San Agustin probably started during the Spanish period. A popular account revealed that a certain group of tulisanes led by a certain Antero Dizon encamped in the nearby forests of Mt. Arayat. One of his men carved a small image of San Agustin in a tree trunk. However, due to their notoriety to the Spaniards, they left the place and the carved image was also abandoned. Some of the barrio folks of the nearby sitio Dapa found the small image in the forest and they brought it to Dapa. As years passed by, the small image was noticed gradually grew bigger and become miraculous. It was reported that through the miraculous image, it cured smallpox and other kinds of diseases. Sometimes, the image was too heavy and nobody can lift it. It can roam also around the barrio, if no candles are lighted in front of the image.
|Altar of San Agustin|
Due to growing number of devotees of San Agustin, the landowner of the barrio, Don Raymundo Feliciano donated a piece of land, and a chapel was built for the miraculous image. Many intercessions of San Agustin was also witnessed by the barrio folks; when the whole barrio was in danger. One account revealed that, some of the barrio men were pursued by the suspected Huks. They were able to hide themselves inside the haystack but; they were able to track down by the pursuing Huks. When the Huks reached their hideouts, they fired multiple gunshots on the haystack, and they expected that they will kill them. After they fired the haystack, the Huks left the place. However, the barrio men noticed that they do not have any gunshots pierced on their bodies. Miraculously, they were saved by San Agustin from the danger! At present, many devotees flock to the small chapel of San Agustin in sitio Dapa every Friday, to offer prayers, seeking his intercession. Aside from curing different diseases and ailments; San Agustin was believed also to grant wishes for couples who are childless. The miraculous image itself was only taken out during the barrio fiesta of San Agustin in August 28; and during the misa de maytinis held during Christmas eve. The image itself was brought to San Bartolome Parish Church, together with other patron saints of barrios, who are under the pastoral jurisdiction of the parish.
The photos used in this article was personally taken by the author.
Cruz, Ceferina et. al., Historical and Cultural Life of Magalang, Pampanga; 1954, National Library of the Philippines page 18.