In the early days of the visita of Boljoon, people tell of a mysterious painting of Mary and the Child Jesus that once decorated the first ermita or chapel.
The painter and date of the painting are unknown but the subjects are visibly of European countenance. Paul Gerschwiler, in his book Bolhoanon: A Cultural Sketch, said it is entirely possible the painting was brought here by Spanish missionaries as it was common practice for them to bring along European artifacts.
It’s now stored in the Boljoon Parish Museum, located on the ground level of the rectory that is attached to the Patrocinio de Maria Church, and forms part of the town’s cultural and religious treasures.
Opened on November 11, 2006, the museum houses such religious relics as 1800 liturgical vestments and carved images of saints, teneblasan (trapezoidal candle holder), old Vesperas music sheets, Lumen Christi candle holders, altar flower arrangements made of nautilus shells (before fresh flowers used), and sacra (altar cards that serve as notes for priest celebrant).
It also displays the findings from archeological digs made just in front of its 18th century church. Artifacts unearthed during the dig include jewelry and ceramic jars, bowls, and plates of Chinese and Japanese origins. The pieces were found in burial sites that had been carbon dated in the US to between 1529-1619.
Boljoon’s museum was opened by Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia with then Mayor Deogenes Derama and Atty. Edmund Villanueva, who was president of the town’s heritage foundation during celebrations marking the 407th feast day of the Nuestra Señora Virgen del Patrocinio.
Architect Melva Rodriguez-Java prepared the architectural plans and display mounts while Jojo Reynes Bersales created the exhibit design, research, and descriptions with the assistance of Serafin L. Senajon and graphic artist Joel Olivares.
Every Tuesday to Sunday
9:00 a.m. to 12 p.m.
1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.