Alburquerque's Sta. Monica Church in Bohol, PHilippines circa 1842. .
Much has been written about the destruction that the magnitude 7.2 earthquake has done to Bohol last 2013. It laid waste to numerous Spanish-era churches in the region. But there are a few that were able to withstand the 34-second shaking, and one of this is Alburquerque's Santa Monica Church. .
Standing proud with its singular belfry, the Santa Monica Curch was built in 1842 and is considered as one of the oldest stone churches in the Philippines. From frail materials, the church structure has since been replaced by coral stones and through the years parts have been added with concrete. .
The name of the town itself is quite intriguing. Initially, I thought it was named after a place in New Mexico, but upon further research, I found that it was based rather on a Portuguese seafarer, Alfonso de Albuquerque. Note however the missing 'R' in Albuq. In fact, locals often call the town in its shortened form, Albur.