Sometime in 1585 Fr. Esteban Marin, an Augustinian Friar, was the very firstmissionary ever to set foot in Bolinao, an island town, which he formed out of the people he baptized.
Originally built in 1609, the church of St. James Parish in Bolinao, Pangasinan is made of black coral stones. Its bell tower was once the tallest in the entire island of Luzon. Bolinao church also served as a fortress against the pirates on several occasions.
In 1788, half of the Church Tower (Tallest in Pangasinan) was toppled by an Earthquake. In 1819, the Church Convent accidentally burned. On May 7,2009 the Church was heavily damaged by Typhoon Emong.
Today as it was in the past, Bolinao Church is one of Pangasinan’s major landmarks. Interestingly, the town of Bolinao and the Church of St James is on permanent display at Legoland Malaysia. It is the only Philippine landmark and destination featured in Legoland.
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