9454“St. Jerome Church” in Morong, Rizal was built in 1615 by Chinese craftsmen, as evidence by two Chinese lion sculptures at the entrance to the steep driveway, a stone and mortar church which has a three-storey facade, and an octagonal bell tower whose cross is illuminated at night and can be seen from the surrounding countryside.
The Morong facade and bell tower is easily the most striking of all church facades along Laguna. Frequently photographed and described as baroque, the facade/bell tower is more properly described as neo-baroque because the baroque period ended in the Philippines before 1780. _ABL6437online.28611612_stdThe central portion of the facade surges outward and the catenated balustrade above give the whole a dynamic felling. Various decorative elements, some Mexican in origin, give the facade a richness characteristic of Baroque. Four angels, representing the cardinal virtues, stand at the corners of the bell tower. Fr. Felix Huerta, writing in 1852, states that the facade had finials shaped as jars and shells used for illuminating it.
Although the church interior was damaged by war, a few elements are worth noting, namely, the crocodile motif carved on the supporting brackets of the choir loft; the bas relief of the Baptism of Jesus in the baptistery, and the image of Saint Jerome on a side altar.”

 

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