Original Image of San Francisco
Padre Pio Chapel

When I launched this blog in November 5, 2016, the articles in this blog are merely focused on historical events, places and persons of Magalang. However, due to the objectives of this blog, it is not only the historical background of Magalang will feature and posted, it will also includes the rich culture and interesting spots located in this agricultural town. 

In Magalang, there are several religious spots that have been frequently visited by the pilgrims. During Holy Week, pilgrims who are seeking serenity, they are climbing the foothills of Mt. Arayat to pray and visit large life statues of stations of the cross of Banal a Bunduk, Dalan ning Krus located in Orchard Village in barrio Ayala. During Fridays, Magaleños and outsiders are flocking to a small chapel of miraculous San Agustin. San Bartolome Parish Church is frequently visited not only on being a heritage church, but also to the relic of town's patron saint. And lastly, the devotees also visiting the Malugud farm, located in barrio San Nicolas; where the replicas of Our Lady of Peñafrancia and Divino Rostro are enshrined. 

In barrio San Francisco, located also in Magalang, we are not aware, that are also several miraculous relics are enshrined on its barrio chapels. Due to the efforts of former parish priest, Rev. Fr. Jowel Jomarsus P. Gatus, several relics of famous Franciscan saints are enshrined on its barrio chapels, and the devotees are starting flocking on its chapels to offer prayers and seeking their intercession. These are the lists of church and chapels where the Franciscan relics are located: 

Lord's Epiphany Parish, Angeles-Magalang Road, San Francisco, Magalang, Pampanga

The relic of barrio's patron saint, San Francisco de Assisi was formally enshrined in September 25, 2016 by Archbishop Florentino G. Lavarias, D.D. The sacred relic is a first class relic, containing pieces of bone and staff of San Francisco de Assisi. The visitation of the relic is open every Tuesday. A holy mass is also held on the same day every 6pm. The veneration of the relic is held every Tuesdays, after 6pm mass, tridum masses and the feast day of the saint every October 4. 

Sta Clara ning Assisi Chapel, Sitio Tambacan, San Francisco, Magalang, Pampanga

This second class relic of St. Claire of Assisi is containing a small fragment of her veil. St. Claire is well known companion of St. Francis of Assisi and foundress of religious order, the Poor Clares. Alongside with the relic of St. Padre Pio, it was formally enshrined in July 21, 2017. Visitation of the relic is open every Thursday; and its veneration is held during its feast day, on August 11. 

St. Padre Pio Chapel, Sitio Mabato Bato, San Francisco, Magalang, Pampanga

The first class relic of St. Padre Pio, alongside with the relic of St. Claire of Assisi was installed in July 21, 2017. The relic of well known stigmatist saint is containing of his hair fragments. Visitation of the relic is open during Thursday, 8:00am to 7:00pm. A holy mass and veneration of the relic is held during 3rd Thursday of every month in 6pm,; and during its tridum masses and feast day in September 23. 

Photo Credits:

Altar of Sta Clara ning Assisi chapel; Lord's Epiphany Parish Facebook page.

Altar of St. Padre Pio chapel; provided by Mr. Jener C. Lacson  


Benedicto T. Dayrit

In our country, there are so many strings of good servants who tirelessly fought the good will for his/her people. Politics in our country is very colorful and benefiting, but sometimes, it is very dirty and dangerous. In Magalang, many old folks are recalling the good times of the town during the term of Benedicto T. Dayrit. How this man transformed he lives of Magaleños during his lifetime? Benedicto Tobias Dayrit, known as "Benny" was born in August 21, 1932 to a family of landowners. His father, Dr. Miguel A. Dayrit is a military doctor, while his mother, Macaria Tobias a school teacher who hailed from San Fernando. His family owned vast tracts of land in barrio Sta Cruz, originally owned by his grandfather, Don Ladislao Dayrit. 

Interestingly, Don Ladislao was from nearby town of Mexico and he came to Magalang to find greener pastures. He later became a rich landowner, and he become cabeza de barangay covering barrio Sta Cruz. He also appointed as teniente primero (vice mayor) of Magalang. Due to his tireless support of Katipunan, he was appointed as presidente municipal of Magalang in 1899. 

Benny finished his secondary education in Pampanga High School; and he later took law degree in Manila, however, he left his college schooling unfinished. He was later hired as staff of known Kapampangan statesman, Senator Gil Puyat. When the midterm elections came in 1959, Senator Puyat encouraged Benny to run for mayoral post in Magalang. Benny took the encouragement of his mentor, and he ran for mayoral post under the banner of Nacionalista Party. He defeated the incumbent Orencio A. Gueco, and he was sworn as mayor of Magalang in the same year. Benny faced several problems during his administration, and one of this is the insurgency. To contain the massive problem of insurgency, Benny initiated the establishment of a hospital that will cater the health care needs of the Magaleños. He successfully established Magalang Hospital, and it was initially located beside the Magalang Municipal Hall. He also reached the public service to far flung areas of Magalang especially to Huk infested barrio of Balitucan. Together with the cooperation of Philippine Army led by Capt. Fidel V. Ramos (who later become president of the Philippines), Benny delivered his unlimited public service to barrio folks; from health, education and relief, to contain the influence of Huks. Benny had also plans to transform Balitucan as one of the newest towns of Pampanga; but unfortunately, his plans were permanently stopped after his brutal assassination. He opposed the excessive abuse incurred by the Huks against to his townspeople. He opposed the imposition of revolutionary tax by the Huks to the public school teachers; who had the one of the lowest paid government employees in those times. His opposition is one of the possible reasons of his eventual assassination.  

Mayor Benedicto Dayrit after his assasination with former mayor
Dr. Servillano D. Ayuyao looking on.

On the night of December 28, 1963, during the annual night ball of Magalang Day, Benny attended the ball; and while the party is going on, a group of armed men, believed to be men of Commander Sumulong fired live bullets to Benny and he was instantly killed. A minor, Nelson Toledano was also killed while Lilia David was wounded by a stray bullet. During his funeral, many Magaleños poured into the streets to give salute and big thanks to their "greatest mayor of Magalang". After his assassination, Vice Mayor Rogelio O. Tiglao took helm. The park, and the hospital was briefly renamed after him. A statue was also built on his honor, on the spot where he was assassinated. Benny was married to a Angeles beauty, Manolita "Inday" Abad Santos and they had four children. 

Photo Credits:

Benedicto T. Dayrit: Capagmasusuian Qng Aldo Pangasilang Ning Magalang, Diciembre 28-29, 1963.

Centenial Tragedy: The Manila Chronicle, December 30, 1963. 


Interview with the late Ms. Elisa N. Dizon (dated April 22, 2011). 

Magalang Killers Huks-PC, The Manila Times, December 29, 1963. 

Park Renamed After Mayor, The Manila Times, December 30, 1963. 


A Sketch of a Gobernadorcillo 

Elections in the Philippines is very colorful, but dirty and expensive. In local level, securing a highest seat is one of the most contested in electoral process. Several techniques and strategies were employed by the candidates to get substantial votes. Unknown to everybody, during Spanish period, the position of gobernadorcillo is a elective position. How a member of principalia was able to secure this position? When the Spanish colonial government was established in the Philippines, the pueblos were organized, one of them in Magalang. Then, the colonial government through the alcalde mayor of provincia introduced this kind of electoral system. By securing gobernadorcillo seat, the candidate must possess the following qualifications; he must possess substantial properties like lands, sugar mills, and livestock; he formerly served as cabeza de barangay or any position in the local government; and he able to write and speak Spanish. The alcalde mayor and his directorcillo (secretary) came to the casa tribunal (municipal hall) to conduct the elections every once a year. The election happened during the first harvest. Then, the alcalde will choose electors from twelve cabezas de barangay and they will choose the future gobernadorcillo through ballot. 

Ballot used by Don Luis Magdangal 

However, a blessing of a parish priest had the say in the process. If the parish priest gave his blessing to his chosen candidate, that candidate will emerge as winner. After the elections, the directorcillo counts the votes and he will write it on a terna. After the counting was over, the directorcillo will announce the winner and a report will be forwarded to the electors and to the parish priest for attestation. Then, the alcalde will forward the report to the governor general. The newly elected gobernadorcillo will make a courtesy call to the parish priest, and he will assume his duties as the highest chief of the town. Then, the gobernadorcillo will assume the honorific title, capitan. In 1847, a decree was promulgated, given some changes in the electoral process. The electors will composed of six cabezas de barangay, six former gobernadorcillos or former cabezas de barangays who served more than ten years and the outgoing gobernadorcillo. However, the process is still the same, with the foremost blessing of the parish priest to his chosen candidate will emerge as the winner. The process was continued, even the Maura law was passed and implemented. The process of electing gobernadorcillo was ceased, when the Americans occupied Philippines. 

Results of elecciones in Magalang signed by Don Antonio Graciano,
alcalde mayor of Pampanga, Don Abdon Supan, outgoing gobernadorcillo,
Fr. Baltasar Gamarra, parish priest and other electors

Photo Credits:

gobernadorcillo, juanavote2016.wordpress.com

ballot of Don Luis Magdangal, National Archives of the Philippines

Elecciones del pueblo de Magalang, el bieno 1881 a 1883; National Archives of the Philippines


Elecciones del pueblo de Magalang año 1843; National Archives of the Philippines

Elecciones del Pueblo de Magalang el bienio 1887 a 1889, National Archives of the Philippines


In 1812, when the parish of Magalang was still on secular control, a young but ambitious secular priest was installed. Fr. Juan Severino Mallari took helm until he was relieved in 1826. His brief biography was initially written by the psychiatrist turned historian, Dr. Luciano P.R. Santiago. According to his findings, Fr. Mallari was born in Macabebe, Pampanga. He took his solemn profession at the Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas. He was ordained in 1809, and he was appointed as coadjutor (assistant parish priest) of Gapan, Lubao and Bacolor. He later competed for the position of parish priest in parishes of Orani, Mariveles, Lubao and as chaplain of Port of Cavite. After his several attempts, he was successfully included to the terna, but, he was never chose by the higher authorities to those positions. Later, he finally attained his status as full pledge parish in the sleepy and large town of Magalang. The town itself was still in the second town proper located in San Bartolome (later, it will be known as Balen Melacuan). During his tenure in Magalang, Fr. Mallari sought some relief from the stresses of his priestly life. However, a series of unexplained murders surfaced in Magalang in different occasions. A total of 57 residents of Magalang killed over a period of ten years; without perpetrator being arrested or even identified. No wonder, it was Fr. Mallari was the perpetrator. In 1826, he was arrested and imprisoned like a common criminal. Even the Spanish chronicler Sinibaldo de Mas wrote that "the attorney on that case talked in pathetic terms of the indescribable and barbarous prodigality of blood shed by that monster". According to some accounts, Fr. Mallari claimed that he had murdered his parishioners "because he believed that he could by this means save his mother who, he persuaded himself, had been bewitched. After the verdict was served, in 1840, he was executed by hanging, earned him as the first Filipino priest executed by the Spanish colonial government. The execution of the triumvirate, Gomburza took place later in 1872. The case of Fr. Mallari is an example of the Indios' "natural tendency to believe all the ghost stories they were so found of telling". Dr. Santiago added that Fr. Mallari was a "victim of injustice" because Spain was already pioneered the humane treatment of mental patients, having founded the one of the first psychiatric institutions in Europe. In the Philippines, Hospicio de San Jose was already operating for 15 years, so probably the priest should have been taken there instead of the prison. Despite his tragic life, Fr. Mallari had exemplary skills, thus he earned also as the second Filipino priest who is a calligraphic artist. A contemporary of another Filipino calligraphic artist, Fr. Anselmo Fajardo; his surviving works (1816 and 1821) were done in the same period of his another older contemporary, Fr. Hipolito. In contrast to the latter, he limned vines of flowers and boy angels with short haircut, perched on whorls of clouds, which are charming examples of folk art. 

Photo Credits:

Nemesis of Neglect, an image of social destitution manifested as Jack the Ripper. Punch cartoon of 1888 by John Tenniel. www.wikipedia.com 


Santiago, Luciano P.R., The Kapampangan Pioneers, Angeles City, Juan D. Nepomuceno Center of Kapampangan Studies, Holy Angel University, 2002. 

Tantingco, Robby P., The Serial Killer Priest of Magalang, Singsing Vol. 7. No. 1., Juan D. Nepomuceno Center of Kapampangan Studies, Holy Angel University, Angeles City, 2017. 


Yng Canacung Biahi
Nang Louie Aldrin L. Bartolo

Menagcat la reng canacung cuyug
Magbiahi qng maculeng ciudad ning Menila
Cabang lilibutan miya yting masanting a ciudad
Mengutang la rening canacung cuyug

Ninu yng ysipan mu caca?
Cacaluguran, eya buo yng cacung aldo
Uling paninapan cu, acayabe que sana 
Yting taung mamyeng tula canacu

Mipa ysip la rening canacung cuyug
 Quitang ra pa, mipacananu na cayu?
Sinabi cu carela, malambat cu neng pantunan
Uling mibating ya pauli na canacu

E cu ynisip qng metung mu culisac
Cabud nemu mibating qng lele cu
Ecu a ysip murin canita 
Pagmasabalan na nacu pala

Ecu na abalic ytang panaun 
Para a ustu cu yning camalian cu
Madalang mu yng taung dumalan qng bie cu
Para magmasabal ampo lugud queca

Manari qng metu a masanting a cristal
Na eme peca yngatan angga qng abalbal me
Rening pirasu na emu na bitasang abalic
Ampo milaco neng santing ampo ulaga

Metu cu taimic ampo e bubulad
Pero, qng pilub luban ning pusu cu 
Yng lagyu na, ya pa ing mimiral
Ampo mamye ganaca qng pamibie bie cu

Nung marinan cu pang pasibaiung cristal
Ecu mangacung gawan cu ngan 
Nune, gawan cu para adinan qng tula ampo santing
Ampo paca yngatan que qng canacung biahi. 

Photo Credits:



In Magalang, there are different customs and traditions pertaining to their love ones, who are departed. In this post, it will show some photographs and print ups that reminisce and remember the death of our love ones. 

Obituario: This announcement was published in the Spanish daily,
La Vanguardia, informing the death of Doña Concepcion M. Luciano, first
wife of Don Mariano A. Henson of Angeles, Pampanga, April 10, 1935
Recuerdos de Patay: The corpse of this old woman from Magalang, takes only one day laid on her deathbed. During the burul, the young ladies will perform pasiyam in front of the dead. And when the night comes, young children will gather to play bulaclacan. Then, her corpse will eventually transfer to the homemade wooden coffin for her funeral.

After the burul, the body of Dr. Andres J. Luciano will be brought to the church for mass, During the ceremony, the church will perform plegaria, by ringing its church bells in low tone. Interestingly, through plegaria, you will identify of what is gender of the dead and what its age.

When the mass is already over, the body will eventually brought to the cemetery to finally laid to rest. In this photo, shows the old wooden main door of San Bartolome Church, Magalang. 

 When the death anniversary of the departed ones near, its family will send invitations to attend mass for remembering the soul of the dead. After the mass, a large banquet will be follow. 

Photo Credits:

The funeral photo of the dead woman, Dr. Andres J. Luciano, and the invitation of the couple Andres P. Feliciano and Maria L. Paras, courtesy of Mrs. Josefina M. Castro.

The funeral of the unidentified person in front of San Bartolome Church, courtesy of Dr. Ignacio P. Morales. 

Obituario of Doña Concepcion Luciano de Henson, La Vanguardia, April 10, 1935. 


Qng Yellow Pad
Nang: Louie Aldrin Lacson Bartolo

Malambat cu nang pagunaman yting malyayari
Caniting milabas a maculeng panaun
Megumpisa ngan yng canacung tuneng bie
Qng metung a pirasung yellow pad

Qng yellow pad meniuala cu pasibaiu
Qng tuneng tula ampo yumu ning bie
Pinupus mu ngan yng dalumdum
Pepaquit mu cacu yng masalang abac

Qng yellow pad iquit cu quecang cabiasnan
Cabiasnang ala nang macalagpus queca
Cabiasanang paituru qng ustu ampo mayap
Salamat, tiru mu cacu yng matulid

Qng yellow pad, biclat mu pasibaiu
Yng canacung pusu ampo isipan
Qng banglung babie ning tuneng lugud
Lugud a casing niyaman ning tiup a marimlang angin

Nung madinan cu pang pasibaiung panaun
Na sumulat cu pa quening yellow pad
Ecu na mipabureng milucut ampo mipirat
Yting baiung amlat, na ingatan ampo dinan ulaga

Photo Credits: