The twin belfries of Talisay church

Left, the right belfry of the church as seen from the other side; middle, another view of the same belfry including the pediment; right, one of the bells inscribed with the year 1838.

Perhaps the overall beauty of the church facade is carried by the massive and grandiose flanking twin belfries that doubles as front buttresses, precede the entrance and pediment that easily catches the attention of the viewer. Today, its only the left side that still has its bells intact with two still sturdy wooden ladders that carries one to the upper levels. The right tower, on the other hand is already devoid of its bells and the ladder is quite weak with several steps missing. It is this second belfry that provides a path to the open terrace.

The main bell of the church which was recast in 1986.

Three of the four bells of the church.

There are only four bells that can be found in this church. The smallest bell (not shown and seen from the facade) has no markings.

The second, located at the side only has its cast year with “AÑO D 1838” inscribed under a cross. There are no other information.

The third, which is located at the back, has more detail on its surface. The bell is dedicated to the NTRA SRA. (Nuestra Señora) DE LA CONSOLACION (Our Lady of Consolacion). Beneath it is the phrase: SE REFUNDIO EN EL AÑO 1895 SIENDO CURA PARROCO EL M. R. P. Fr. MANUEL DEL BURGO. (this refers to the cast date and the parish priest who commissioned it; this is the same priest who decorated the interior in 1894 but I haven’t found any archival photos that shows how it looked like during that time). And finally, at the bottom, just near the lip of the bell is FUNDACION DE HILARIO SUNICO JABONEROS No. 50 (this is the foundry of Hilario Sunico along Jaboneros St. in San Nicolas where several of the country’s church bells were cast and was active as late as the 1930s; it should also be noted that the inclusion of the street is not common in many other bells that I have seen. It is usually inscribed with just H. Sunico).

The fourth and main bell is huge and dominates the center. Dedicated to the patron saint, it was recast from the original. The inscription reads:


The other details found on the original bell like the weight (in arrobas), the parish priest who commissioned it as well as the name of the foundry were no longer carried into the recast. However, basing from the third bell, the parish priest might have been the same.

Left, the wooden ceiling, as seen under the flanking belfries marks the floor of the first level; right, the domes are, suprisingly, made of bricks and, as circled, bats inhabit this darker part.

A pleasant surprise, the domes of the belfries are made of bricks. I didn’t know that it was also used in Cebu churches which are predominantly made from coral stones. Or is this just a later addition? Entrance to these two towers with two levels is by way of the choirloft. The inner walls have also been covered with a layer of cement.


  1. Pingback: 3 surprises at the twin belfries of Carcar church | Simbahan

  2. Wow chuya gud 🙂 I like the topic very much even the photos of the two belfry towers. I haven’t gone up there yet but i do hope that I could be able to see its bells present in this church. May I know when these photos where taken?

  3. the bellcaster is hilario sunico,not hilarion sunico. hilario is the elder brother of great, great grandfather domingo sunico. and his foundry is located in nos 19 and 20 jaboneros street in san nicolas in binondo and not sampaloc.

  4. Estan, I would like to correct you when you said that several of the bells that hang in centuries were casted in Hilario’s foundry. Estan, you must know that Hilario Sunico is the Philippines most renowned bellcaster during the Spanish period. Researches made by Prof. Trota Jose of UST and Prof. Honey Libertine Achanzar of UP Manila shows that 167 bells were attributed to him.

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