Parish Church of Santa Teresa de Avila, Talisay, Cebu

Official Name: Parish Church of Santa Teresa de Avila of Talisay[1]

Classification Status: Local Cultural Property - Heritage Monuments, Sites and Zones of the City of Talisay, Cebu (per 3rd SP Ordinance No. 2009-14)[1]

Town or City: Talisay

Year Declared: August 16, 1836[1]

Other Declarations: Registered Property of Talisay City, Classified Historic Structures (covering all Colonial Churches and other Houses of Worship, per NHCP Res. No. 3, s. 1991)[1]

The Archdiocesan Shrine of Santa Teresa de Avila, previously known as Santa Teresa de Avila Church, is a Roman Catholic church located in Talisay, Cebu, Philippines. Built in 1836 until 1848, architecturally, the church is in classical Graeco-Roman style, featuring the facade's two bell towers connected by a porch with two supporting columns on the foyer. On October 15, 2007, it was declared an archdiocesan shrine and pilgrims could receive plenary indulgence for a year.[2]

The church was made from coral stones and contained embellished interiors and five gilded altars. Its original design was cruciform with two semicircular transepts and the twin belfries on each side of the façade,[3] with a connecting balustraded portico that is supported by two columns on the main entrance, are its prominent feature. Inside, hanging above the crossing is a large round chandelier. According to Filipinas Heritage Library, the church used "round arch, rectangular piers with engaged shafts, and an arcade." Felipe Redondo, writing in the late 19th century, described its architecture as Doric (classical Graeco-Roman) in style.

The church's structure was remodeled, and two new wings were added on each side of the main nave. Its original stonewalls were preserved, its old arched windows and side entrances still visible to this day.[2]

The church, named after its patron saint Teresa of Avila, was originally part of the property owned by Augustinian friars in Talisay during the Spanish era. It was initially a visita of San Nicolas, a district south of the municipality of Cebu, and later became independent on August 16, 1836, under Juan Soriano due to a royal decree from April 25, 1836. Notably, the tomb of a predecessor of Juan Soriano can still be found in one of the small chapels within the church.

Construction began in 1836 and was completed in 1848. In 1877, after a typhoon damaged the clay-tiled roof, it was renovated with iron sheets, and in 1894, the interiors were decorated. During World War II, the church suffered significant damage, with only the facade remaining mostly intact. Post-war restoration, led by Teofilo Camomot, involved lowering the roof due to war-related damage, while the nearby convent did not survive the conflict.[2]

Archdiocesan Shrine
On October 15, 2007, coinciding its fiesta celebration, the parish was declared as an archdiocesan shrine by Cardinal Ricardo Vidal, then Archbishop of Cebu. Pilgrims who visited the church on certain days of the month between the declaration date until October 15, 2008 would receive plenary indulgence.[2]