Manjuyod was established as a parish in 1854 and a Recollect priest arrived that same year to oversee its spiritual administration.
It was, however, the successor of Fr. Jose Maria Ruiz, the town’s first parish priest, who was credited as the “real architect of the town,” according to the publication “Handurawan: Visita Iglesia Negros Y Recoletors.”
The book adds that Fr. Antonio Moreno served for only four years until 1860 but in that span of time he was able to create “a well-designed town with decent housing, plaza, church, convent, and hall of justice.”
This led to more people relocating to Manjuyod, resulting in an increase in town population and fast growth of Catholic parishioners.
Fr. Moreno was also cited as having built the church in Ayungon, convent and church of Jimalalud, and municipal building of Tayasan. Starting in 1849, Manjuyod was merged with these three places and organized as a parish separate from Tanjay.
After Moreno’s term, Fr. Juan Miro succeeded him in 1861. He was parish priest of the town until his death on August 17, 1876.
Repairs and improvements were introduced to the Manjuyod Church by Fr. Juan Perez. He embellished the interior with ornaments and jewels and even added a pipe organ. Renovations were also introduced by the secular clergy that took over the administration of the parish from the Recollects.