PIDDIG, Ilocos Norte, September 23, 2014 – The 200-year old church of Saint Anne Parish in Piddig, Ilocos Norte was closed for public worship after it was deemed “unsafe” after liturgical rite presided over by Laoag Bishop Renato P. Mayugba, DD, on September 14, 2014, Feast of the Triumph of the Cross.
According to Fr. Ericson Josue, the Commission Head of the Church Heritage of the diocese, the foundation of the said church “has been discovered to be ‘weak’ to carry the massive walls, the edifice.”
“The place of worship is transferred to a provisional church within the parish compound. No more liturgical functions in this edifice as decreed by the bishop,” he added.
Fr. Joey Ranjo, the Media Relations officer of the diocese, said that “the building will be kept that way and its historical value remains.”
With the closure of the church, the people are challenged to raise millions of money to renovate and repair the church.
The church of Saint Anne was built in 1810 by the Augustinian Missionaries. The first parish priest was Fr. Isidore Champaner.
The building became a refugee camp during the Philippine-American War and was razed during the Japanese occupation. In 1963, the façade and the interiors underwent restoration.
There is an ongoing campaign calling for the funding of the church’s repair. You may contact the curia of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Laoag at (077) 770-5210 for more details. (Rainier Marquez)