Sta. Ana Shrine
Sta. Ana Shrine

The Sta. Ana Church of Barili is the only parish in Cebu that is dedicated to St. Anne, the mother of the Virgin Mary. 

The parish was founded in 1614. Unfortunately, all of the church’s records from that period until 1805 were destroyed during World War II. But one of the earliest documents found in the Philippine National Archives mentioned Barili, together with Parian and Bantayan, as the only secular curacies beyond the walls of Cebu City.

Construction of Barili’s church at its present site was started only in February 1889 by Fr. Juan Alcoseba, who was parish priest from 1889 to 1910. The previous one was situated near the river and would be flooded every so often, so that one day the parishioners decided to transfer the church to a safe location. In the late 1950s, Fr. Emilio Vicentillo renovated the church and added the concrete belfry that still stands today. Another renovation of the church was made in 1974 under Francisco Boltron. Despite modern alterations, the church still retains its original coral stone foundations and walls which rise up to a meter then give way to the cement walls.

The church stands at the end of a street lined with old trees. A beautifully wrought statue of Santa Ana is prominently placed at the church façade, just below the pediment. At the right side of the church is a memorial to the late Bishop Juan Gorordo, whose family lived once in Barili.

The present convent is located a little distance to the right of the church. It is a fairly modern one since the original convent was sold by the Archdiocese through Fr. Porferio Cagang for a mere P450,000 in 1990. Made of cut coral stones on the ground floor and the best of hardwoods on the second floor, this original colonial-period convent is now the home of a local rural bank which has most fortunately retained much if not all of the structure’s integrity and design. It is located within the margins of the plaza that is found across the church. (From the book “Balaanong Bahandi” published by the Cathedral Museum of Cebu and the USC Press)

The Barili church’s status was elevated in 2005 as a Diocesan Shrine as declared by then Cebu Archbishop Ricardo Cardinal Vidal.

By such declaration, the Archdiocese of Cebu hopes to encourage devotees to visit the diocesan shrine as pilgrims and pay homage to the mother of Mary. Plenary indulgence is granted to people who visit and pray at the shrine, according to the declaration.

 Sta. Ana Shrine
 Saint Anne: Barili’s Patroness
 Palalong Cliff
 Casa Pañares
 Hospicio de San Jose
 Villa Eliton
 Salay Hermitage