The Nuestra Señora de Gracia Church in Makati has been a place of solace for religious pilgrims over the years. Also known as Guadalupe Church, it stands amidst the bustling urban city of Makati. Guadalupe Church hails to be one of Manila’s most beautiful church structures.
The local parish church is being overseen by the Augustinian friars from Santo Niño de Cebu. Within the Nuestra Señora de Gracia Church’s vicinity is the San Carlos Seminary and the Our Lady of Guadalupe Minor Seminary.
The Building of Grand Parish
The grand church structure of Nuestra Señora de Gracia was started in the early 1600s by the Augustinian friars headed by Fray Juan de Montes de Oca. The construction took almost three decades to complete under the succession of several friars.
With the petition of devout citizens, the local chapter was changed from Our Lady of Grace to Our Lady of Guadalupe in honor and veneration of the Virgin Mary in Estremadura, Spain. A wooden replica of the effigy was then brought from Spain. Devotees of the Lady of Guadalupe began to flock due to the Manila-Acapulco galleon trade. It became a common tradition for pilgrims and travelers that a dock had to be built by the river to accommodate visitors.
Aside from being a place for the devout, Guadalupe Church served as a school and an orphanage to children who were victims of the cholera plague during the 1800s. Since then, the church structure has stood the test of several wars and calamities.
The Beauty of a Classic Church
Over the centuries, the grandiosity of Nuestra Señora de Gracia never lost its radiance despite the changes and developments in the city. All the more, travelers and locals are continually amazed and admire the old style and beauty of the tower.
From the outside, guests can view the rugged, massive stone walls of Guadalupe Church with its arabesque Baroque style. The structure presents varying architectural styles, most likely because of the different influences in its completion over the years. The façade presents Neo-Romanesque-Gothic elements, with Doric columns.
Once they step in, visitors are readily in awe of its grand interior. It presents a calm, peaceful place for solitude and meditation. Its archaic design makes it a sought-after venue for church weddings. The church entrance allows natural air to flow in the sanctuary but still keeps it impenetrable from the city’s busy noises.
The Nuestra Señora de Gracia Church has remained a place of respite for those who wish to find quiet peace and calm.