Carcar Church’s simple yet beautiful interior

The interior of the church of Carcar is one of the beautiful that I've seen in the country. It's

The church of Carcar has one of the simple yet beautiful interiors that I've seen in the country. The surprises are in the small details.

Achival photo of church interior. Date unknown but probably late 19th or early 20th century. Note the coffered ceiling at the central nave.

Achival photo of church interior. Date unknown but probably late 19th or early 20th century. Note the coffered ceiling at the central nave.

Everytime I’m inside the church of Carcar, I can’t just help but marvel at its interior. It is simple yet beautiful and it is one of very few, if not the only original edifice in the province that has three naves. The massive and simply decorated door opens below the choirloft to an interior 66 meters in length, 22 meters in width and 12 meters high at the center. Each nave is partitioned by an arcade with massive, around a meter thick, pillars that run all the way until a few meters to the presbytery.

The photos used in this series were taken between 2005 and 2008 as the author visits this church from time to time. Special thanx to Lorens Gibb Lapinid for the assistance in 2008. Prior to 2008, busts of angels holding lamp poles used to be positioned above the beautiful relieves of the stations of the cross but when one fell due to weakened supports, all were taken down. Thanx to howls of protests by heritage advocates, there are plans to reinstate these with much better support.

One gazes up to see a painted ceiling of the central nave. However, this might be a later addition as archival photos show a coffered one similar to those found at the left and right naves. At each side, several latticed windows are found above each arch, giving a natural bright interior that is better than that of San Agustin Church in Intramuros which is dark and gloomy when not lighted. An arco toral separates the presbytery where a neoclassic altar can be found.

Each side nave is terminated with a side altar that is different in design than the main retablo. The rear of the left has a wooden staircase that leads to the choirloft and entrance to the belfries while the rear of the right, the baptistry is situated. Around the walls, some pillars as well as on the tiled floor, several niches of the dead are found.


  1. Pingback: Carcar Church baptistry | Simbahan

  2. Hi estan…it was indeed marvelous…here in Baliwag. our altar was renovated …i think three times since 1990. ours is the same with the ones in Katedral (San Sebastian Cathedral) in Lipa. I went there a week ago. I was shocked to see a new piece of retablo…it was good but i still prefer the original… The Carcar Church should be declarec a heritage site..or is it?

    Thanks Estan…

  3. estan, the early photo you got of the church shows it quite bare. This must have been taken before the reign of Fr. Anastacio del Corro. He is to the church in Carcar what Mariano Mercado was to the civic structure in the town. A local boy, Padre Tatyong used his wealth to embellish the church, build the beautiful school next door, and brought the Augustinian Cannonesses from Belgium to our little town.

  4. Pingback: Carcar Church’s coffered and painted ceiling | Simbahan

  5. Hi Dylan, the pedestals were replaced since one angel fell sometime last year ata. However, it has now been put back with new pedestals. I will be posting an update by next week.

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