Laag-Laag sa Cebu (Part 13): Another Visit to the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral

A visit to the Minor Basilica of the Santo Niño naturally means a visit to the nearby Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral. Thus, I visited again this seat of the Archbishop of Cebu during my 2014 and 2016 visits to Ciudad de Cebu.

Just like the Minor Basilica of the Santo Niño, the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral was damaged during the 2013 Bohol Earthquake.

Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral Damaged by Bohol Earthquake

The bell tower has cracks…

Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral Belfry Damaged by Bohol Earthquake

…as well as the façade.

Facade of Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral damaged by Bohol earthquake

The Bohol earthquake is not the first catastrophe that befell this cathedral. In fact, it experienced worse destruction during the Second World War after it was bombed by the American war planes during the liberation from the Japanese invaders. Only the façade, the walls, and the bell tower survived the aerial bombing.

Thankfully, the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral sustained minor damages, which is unlike the Minor Basilica of the Santo Niño where the bell tower collapsed and the Holy Mass has to be held outside of the church.

Interior of the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral

The interior of the Cebu Cathedral and was not affected by the Bohol Earthquake. Thus, I was able to get a good photo of the altar.

Altar of Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral

…and other images in the cathedral.

Images of the saints in Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral

The organ at the area above the cathedral's door was also spared by the earthquake.

Pipe Organ of the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral

A little research revealed that Cebu Cathedral’s official name is Metropolitan Cathedral and Parish of Saint Vitalis and of the Guardian Angels. The cathedral got Saint Vitalis as its patron because the Spanish conquistador Miguel Lopez de Legazpi landed on Cebu on 28th of April 1565, which is the feast day of that saint.

I also discovered that Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral is the very first church in Cebu (thus also the very first church in the whole Philippines). It was said that the image of the Santo Niño was transferred to this church from the house where it was discovered. It means that Cebu Cathedral is much older than the Minor Basilica of the Santo Niño.

I was not able to enter the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral during my 2016 visit to Cebu but I had a good look of its restored façade.

Restored facade of the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral

The bell tower was restored too.

Restored bell tower of the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral

I am glad that Cebu City recovered from the earthquake and the restoration of the damages Minor Basilica of the Santo Niño and Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral is the symbol of that.


Read more of my latest adventure in the island of Cebu!

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  1. Oh my! The pipe organ!!! Awesome! And I so love the bell tower, real bell, real chimes. Here at our cathedral, they use electronic ones and somehow they are not the same. :(

    1. I also prefer the real bell than the electronic ones. The electronic bell sounds so fake.


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