The Holy Week tradition of the Visita Iglesia or Seven Churches Visitation can still be observed this year despite the social distancing measures, with the churches going on Live Streaming and Google providing the Street View of the churches.
The annual pilgrimage on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday observed by Catholics as they visit seven different churches and recite the prayers at every Station of the Cross depicting the life and death of Jesus Christ can still be done, thanks to internet platforms.
On digital, families can even visit churches in located different provinces, unlike the physical visits that would limit the Visita Iglesia to churches within minutes of each other.
GOOGLE MAPS STREET VIEW
Google Maps Street View offers users a 360-degree view virtual visit and tour of local churches, from their homes as if they are actually there – truly good news for every Catholic faithful.
All you have to do is to access the Google Streetview of Churches:
- visit Google Maps
- type in the churches or places you would like to visit
- to view a specific area, just drag the Pegman located at the bottom right of your computer screen
- If you’re using a mobile device, open your Google Maps and location, type in your destination and tap on a place marker
“Street View, by Google Maps, is a virtual representation of our surroundings on Google Maps, consisting of millions of panoramic images. Street View’s content comes from two sources – Google and contributors. Through our collective efforts, we enable people everywhere to virtually explore the world,” Google said.
Here are some churches that can be virtually visited and toured (church suggestions from Google are depending on your location):
The Minor Basilica and Metropolitan Cathedral of the Immaculate Concepcion, Intramuros, Manila
The cathedral of Manila and basilica located in Intramuros is the home church of Cardinal Chito Tagle before his posting as a Vatican official in Italy.
St. Mary Magdalene Church, Kawit, Cavite
The Roman Catholic church is one of the oldest churches in the Philippines, the construction of the present church was started in 1737. The church was last restored in 1990 by the citizens of Kawit.
Daraga Church, Albay
Nuestra Señora de la Porteria Parish Church, commonly known as Daraga Church, is a Roman Catholic Church in the municipality of Daraga, Albay, Philippines under the jurisdiction of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Legazpi. The church was built by the Franciscans in 1772 under the patronage of the Our Lady of the Gate. Certain church sections were declared as a National Cultural Treasure of the Philippines in 2007.
Saint Gregory The Great Parish Church, Majayjay, Laguna
The San Gregorio Magno Parish , also known as Majayjay Church and St. Gregory the Great Parish Church, is one of the oldest Roman Catholic churches in the Philippines located in the municipality of Majayjay in Laguna. It is recognized by the National Museum as a National Cultural Treasure
CBCP VISITA IGLESIA
The Catholics Bishop Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has been offering Catholics its Visita Iglesia Online. In previous years, the online service was provided to the sick who cannot go to church.
With the lockdown enforced in Luzon island and other parts of the country, the CBCP is now offering the Visita Iglesia Online to all Catholic faithful who are at home.
“Since 2011, online Visita Iglesia has been serving Filipinos in foreign countries, where going to physical church or parish was difficult or impossible,” Monsignor Pedro Quitorio said in a CBCP report released on April 6, 2020.
“It also helped Filipino seafarers, the sick and those who, for one reason or another, could not make it to churches during Lent, Holy Week, and Easter,” he added.
Visit the CBCP Visita Iglesia Online here.
The CBCP has issued precautionary measures during the Holy Week to help stop the transmission of the COVID-19.
Holy Week prayer requests or mass intentions can also be sent online as the CBCP Media Office has created an online platform through using Google forms. To request for Mass intentions, CBCP News has provided 3 Submission Forms on its website.
TELL US in the comments below, how are you observing the Holy Week this year?
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