Calls to return Boljoon panels reach House

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram February 26,2024 - 02:55 PM

Boljoon pulpit panels: Explainer: What we know so far on Boljoon’s once-lost pulpit panels

Left: A photo taken in 1985 showing the still-intact pulpit of Boljoon’s Patrocinio de Maria Santissima Church. Right: Four of the pulpit panels unveiled in a recent turnover ceremony at the National Museum of the Philippines.  | Photos from USC Cebuano Studies Center and the National Museum of the Philippines

CEBU CITY, Philippines – More local officials have joined calls to have the once-lost pulpit panels of Boljoon’s iconic church returned to its home.

The latest was Rep. Edsel Galeos of Cebu’s 2nd District.

Galeos on Monday, Feb. 26, lodged House Bill No. 1601 before the House of Representatives to urged the national government to bring back the pulpit panels to the Archdiocesan Shrine of Patrocinio de Maria Santisima.

ALSO READ: Explainer: What we know so far on Boljoon’s once-lost pulpit panels

In it, Galeos wanted the House to push the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and the National Museum of the Philippines (NMP) to have the four pulpit panels returned to Boljoon’s church.

He also cited Sections 15 and 16 of Article 14 of the Constitution and the National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009 (Republic Act No. 10066) as the basis for why the pulpit panels must be returned to their hometown.

ALSO READ: Donated Boljoon pulpit panels acquired legally -Nat’l Museum

In addition, he backed the Archdiocese of Cebu’s stance, stressing that the panels are not just mere ‘artistic ornaments for public appreciation’ but ‘tools of evangelization.’

“Boljoanons are demanding for accountability… It must therefore be restored where it rightfully belongs,” Galeos added.

The NMP recently disclosed that the four pulpit panels of Boljoon’s centuries-old church were donated to them by private collectors.

ALSO READ: Cebu archdiocese urges Boljoon pulpit panels returned, asserts ownership

The unveiling of the previously missing panels sparked debates and outcry on the internet, particularly Cebuanos who then questioned why these valuables ended up in the hands of private individuals and auctioneers.

The Capitol and the Archdiocese of Cebu had also requested for the national government to return the pulpit panels to Boljoon.


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TAGS: Boljoon, Cebu, cebu news, House, pulpit panels

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