Manaoag | Pray, Eat, and Love

Manaoag, Pangasinan is known for its miraculous Our Lady of Manaoag dates back when I was still in grade school. It was some sort of a clan summer outing to pay devotion to the Our Lady then we headed off to the beach after. The second time I was here--actually just passing through was in the early 90s when we were having a project visit in Sta. Barbara and we dropped by Manaoag church for some rice cakes. Since then, I have not been to Manaoag.



It was the beginning of the year, and it was an auspicious day for the family to pay a visit to the Our Lady of Manaoag. First, it was time for Thanksgiving for the last good year. Second, I have not been able to visit the place for the longest time, and, third, it was just the most opportune time to again ask for protection and blessings for the trips of The Pinoy Explorer for 2013!


The church complex has transformed a lot. It is now more organized--parking, vehicular and human traffic, and the vendors around the church.

I remember when I was a kid that the complex was in total chaos. Touts would just pin a cross or a religious medallion on your chest without you asking them--and you are "forced" to buy them. Now they are confined to the fringes of the churchyard and are not allowed inside its compound--giving more space and quiet time for pilgrims like us.

Security personnel is adequate enough to make everyone feel safe. Parking is well managed, though it was not a peak season. I guess, it could get worse during the Holy Week or fiesta, but nonetheless, I found it okay.


Cleanliness is maintained in and around the complex. The comfort rooms are maintained--not so clean because of the human traffic, but not the kind of stinking public comfort rooms. There are designated garbage bins all around and I have even seen security personnel picking up trash that was left by some unmindful souls. Kudos to the church administration for making the pilgrimage, not like a marketplace. I wish all pilgrimage sites would be managed like this.



Overall, the family pilgrimage was okay. Starting the year with thanksgiving and prayer was just great, especially when you are bonding with your family. With a bunch of grown-up kids feasting on puto and a sumptuous lunch after the pilgrimage, was just perfect!

More photos of Manaoag HERE.

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Aside from my day job, I love photography and storytelling. Going places--be it a cliche destination or the far side of the road--stoke and free my soul. I dig deeper into the people’s psyche, culture and ethnicity, and heritage. I love to observe how they thrive and build social institutions, preserve their culture and traditions.


ronielmacatol said...

This I missed when we were in Binalonan, Pangasinan last year. It's a lesson learned that I must always take the chance to maximize my travels for God knows when will I be able to have that same opportunity again. Thanks for sharing your story Kuya Ding!

Admin/Author said...

Sayang nga Roniel. Isang bayan na lang. ilang minuto. But I am sure there will be more opportunities to come!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...

What a way to start the year! My relatives visit Manaoag regularly. I've actually never been, and really curious to see how it's like. I'm not religious, but a lot of family members are thankful to the church for being 'healed'. Someday, I'll join them in the pilgrimage. And would love to have some puto too!

Admin/Author said...

Indeed, Gaye! Yeah, why not join the pilgrimage next time? there's lots of puto and mangos there! hehe

Bonzenti |Con Tour Blog said...

Sarap ng Puto pre. Pero mas masarap ang bonding at ang story behind the Puto.:-).

Admin/Author said...

totoo yan Bonz...daghang salamat!

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