Roman Catholic Diocese of Balanga

Diocese of Balanga
Dioecesis Balangensis
Diyosesis ng Balanga

Arms of the Diocese
Ecclesiastical province San Fernando
Metropolitan San Fernando
Denomination Roman Catholic
Sui iuris church Latin Church
Rite Roman Rite
Established 17 March 1975
Cathedral Diocesan Shrine and Cathedral Parish of Saint Joseph
Current leadership
Pope Francis
Bishop Ruperto C. Santos
Metropolitan Archbishop Florentino Lavarias
Website of the Diocese

The Diocese of Balanga is one of the 72 ecclesiastical territories called dioceses of the Catholic Church in the Philippines. It comprises the whole province of Bataan. It was established on March 17, 1975, appointing the Most Rev. Celso Guevarra as the first Bishop on June 4, 1975. The current bishop is Most. Rev. Ruperto C. Santos who was appointed as bishop on April 1, 2010 by Pope Benedict XVI

Brief history

The Diocese of Balanga was established on March 17, 1975. It comprises the entire civil province of Bataan, the smallest among the provinces of Central Luzon. The province is a peninsula jutting out to sea, with Manila Bay to the east, China Sea to the west, and the province of Zambales to the north.

Before this, the region was divided into two parts: the Corregimiento of Mariveles and the Province of Pampanga. The towns of Mariveles, Bagac, Morong and Maragondon, Cavite comprised the Corregimiento of Mariveles that was under the jurisdiction of the Recollect Order of the Roman Catholic Church. The province of Pampanga included the towns of Orion, Pilar, Balanga, Abucay, Samal, Orani, Llana Hermosa and San Juan de Dinalupihan. The latter group was under the charge of the Dominican Order. Limay, the twelfth town of Bataan, was named only in 1917.

The topography of the province has made most of the inhabitants farmers or fishermen, with a sprinkling of merchants, factory workers and professionals. Recent years, however, have seen the development of manufacturing industries in the province, particularly the Free Zone in Mariveles, which has brought an influx of workers from other provinces and improved living conditions of its own workers.

Historically Bataan is most remembered, along with the island of Corregidor, as the main scene of action in the Philippines during the Second World War. These places are strategic in guarding the entrance to Manila Bay. The surrender of Filipino and American soldiers to overwhelming Japanese forces marked the Fall of Bataan in 1942. A war memorial, Dambana ng Kagitingan, now stands to honor the men who fought and died in that last stand.

The Diocese

Diocesan Shrine and Cathedral Parish of St. Joseph

The diocese comprises the whole civil province of Bataan. It comprises 34 parishes and 2 chaplaincies. St. Joseph's Cathedral in Aguire Street, Poblacion, Balanga City, serves as the seat of the diocese.

The titular patron of the diocese is St. Joseph, Husband of Mary, whose feast day falls on March 19. The city fiesta is celebrated on April 28.

The miter symbolizes the pastoral authority of the bishop-elect, which he will be exercising within the province.

The three long-stemmed lilies, symbols of Saint Joseph, the patron saint of the Cathedral. According to legend the staves of the many suitors of the Blessed Virgin Mary were gathered in the temple; the staff of Saint Joseph bloomed to signify that he was the one chosen by God to be the head of the Holy Family. Blue signifies peace, justice and tranquility. Saint Joseph was called "just" by the Gospel. He was a placid and silent man, too.[1]

The three youths reading books. Bataan, the civil province co-terminus with the Diocese, means the Land of the Youth, the hope of the Fatherland. The books being read by each are respectively marked VIA, meaning Christ The Way; VERITAS, meaning Christ The Truth; and VITA, meaning Christ The Life. Overhead is the golden sun with the letters IHS, meaning Jesus. Our Lord Jesus Christ said, "I am the Light of the world" (John 8:12; 9:5). He is the "real light that comes into the world and shines on all men" (John 1:9). He is the Lamb, the lamp of the Celestial Jerusalem (Revelation 21:23), the Sun of Justice (Malachi 4:2). He also said, "I am The Way, I am The Truth, I am The Life" (John 14:6). So in the light of Christ that is explained by the Church, we must study and follow and live Christ who is the way, the truth and the life. This study entails seriousness, this following of Christ means patience, this living of Christ requires perseverance—virtues signified by the red color.[2]


Name Formerly Bishop of Appointed to the Diocese Appointed elsewhere
Bishop Celso N Guevarra † Died Aug. 13, 2002, tomb in the Belltower of the cathedral Titular Bishop of Vannida, Auxiliary Bishop of San Fernando, Philippine June 4, 1975 Retired April 8, 1998
Bishop Honesto F. Ongtioco Priest of San Fernando, Pampanga April 8, 1998 (Ordained Bishop June 18, 1998) Appointed Bishop of the Diocese of Cubao June 28, 2003
Bishop Socrates Buenaventura Villegas Titular Bishop of Nona, Auxiliary Bishop of Manila, Philippines May 3, 2004 (Installed July 3, 2004 Appointed Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan September 8, 2009
Bishop Ruperto Santos Priest of Manila, Philippines April 1, 2010 (Installed on July 8, 2010)

Diocesan Curia


Cathedral Parish of St. Joseph

Balanga 2100 Bataan

Tel./Fax: (047) 237-3226

Tel. (047) 237-5705

Chancellor: Rev. Fr. PERCIVAL V. MEDINA

Oeconomus: Rev.Fr. ANTONIO QUINTOS, JR

Administrative Section

Diocesan Bishop’s Council (Presbyteral)


Diocesan Pastoral Council

President: "Most Rev. RUPERTO C. SANTOS, D.D

Vice-President: Msgr. ANTONIO DUMAUAL

Secretary: Rev. FR. PERCIVAL V. MEDINA


St. Joseph Diocesan Financial Foundation

President: Mr. Carlos Mateo

Vice President: Dr. Ramil Pizarro

Secretary: Ms. Agnes de Leon

Treasurer: Ms. Sonia Magtanong

Auditor: Mr. Florencio Lucio

PRO: Mr. Antonio Perez, Mr. Jimmy Castillo, Ms. Josefina Tolentino

Coordinators of the Vicariates

Vicariate of St. Peter of Verona: Rev. Msgr. Antonio Dumaual

Vicariate of St. Dominic Guzman: Rev. Fr Abraham Pantig

Vicariate of Our Lady of the Pillar: Rev. Fr. Edilbert Pomer

Vicariate of St. Michael Archangel: Rev. Fr. Santi de Tablan

Judiciary Section

Advocate: Rev.Msgr. Hernando B. Guanzon,JCD

Pastoral Section

Diocesan Commission on Clergy Affairs Director: Rev. Fr JOEL JIMENEZ


Vicariate of St. Peter of Verona

(Northern Bataan)

Vicariate of St. Dominic de Guzman

(Eastern Bataan)

Vicariate of Our Lady of the Pillar

(Central Bataan)

Vicariate of St. Michael the Archangel

(Southern Bataan)

Dinalupihan - St. John the Baptist
  • Pagalanggang - St. Catherine of Alexandria
  • Colo - Our Lady of Lourdes
  • Roosevelt - St. Jerome Emiliani
  • San Ramon - St. Raymund Nonnatus
  • New San Jose - St. Joseph

Hermosa - St. Peter of Verona

  • Balsic - Holy Family
  • Culis - St. Lorenzo Ruiz
Orani - Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary (Diocesan Shirine)
  • Tapulao - St. John the Evangelist
  • Tala - St. Josephine Bahkita

Samal - St. Catherine of Siena

  • Calaguiman - St. Vincent Ferrer

Abucay - St. Dominic de Guzman

  • Mabatang - St. Anthonine of Florence
  • Bangkal - St. Thomas Aquinas
Balanga - St. Joseph (Cathedral and Diocesan Shirine)
  • Puerto Rivas Ibaba - Our Lady of the Immacualte Conception
  • Cupang Proper - Santo Cristo
  • Munting Batangas - Divine Mercy (Diocesan Shirine)

Pilar - Our Lady of the Pillar

  • Nagwaling - St. Isidore, the Farmer

Bagac - St. Catherine of Alexandria

  • Parang - St. Francis Xavier
  • Saysayin - St. Vincent Ferrer

Morong - Our Lady of the Pillar

  • Nagbalayong - Our Lady of Lourdes
* Orion - St. Michael the Archangel
  • Calungusan - Sts. Peter and Paul

Limay - St. Francis of Assisi

  • Lamao - St. Roch of Montpellier (Diocesan Shirine)

Mariveles - St. Nicholas of Tolentine

  • Cabcaben - St. Joseph, the Worker
  • Malaya (BEPZ) - Our Lady of Fatima
  • Alas-Asin - Santo Niño
  • Alion-Batangas II - Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception
  • Mt. View - St. Gemma Galgani


1588 - ABUCAY


1596 - SAMAL

1607 - MORONG

1667 - ORION

1714 - ORANI

1739 - BALANGA

1756 - HERMOSA

1801 - PILAR


1873 - BAGAC

1930 - LIMAY, Cabcaben (Mariveles)

1975 - Establishment of the Diocese of Balanga

1978 - Malaya [BEPZ] (Mariveles)

1980 - Puerto Rivas Ibaba (Balanga), Parang (Bagac)

1985 - Colo (Dinalupihan)

1990 - Balsic (Hermosa)

1994 - San Ramon (Dinalupihan), Tapulao (Orani), Lamao (Limay)

1996 - Cupang Proper (Balanga)

1999 - Calaguiman (Samal), Mabatang (Abucay), Calungusan (Orion)

2004 - Nagwaling (Pilar), Alas-Asin (Mariveles)

2005 - Roosevelt (Dinalupihan), New San Jose (Dinalupihan), Bangkal (Abucay), Saysain (Bagac), Alion-Batangas II (Mariveles)

2006 - Tala (Orani)

2012 - Munting Batangas (Balanga), Nagbalayong (Morong), Mt. View (Mariveles)

2013 - Culis (Hermosa)


  1. COAT OF ARMS of Most Rev. Socrates B. Villegas, D.D.Bishop of Balanga paragraph 4
  2. COAT OF ARMS of Most Rev. Socrates B. Villegas, D.D. Bishop of Balanga paragraph 5

Coordinates: 14°40′45″N 120°32′24″E / 14.6792°N 120.5400°E / 14.6792; 120.5400

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 10/1/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.