Parish of St. Joseph,Las Piñas City A Presentation By Janinna N. Casuncad 203 C
St. Joseph Parish Church is the Roman Catholic church of the parish of Las Piñas, just south of the city of Manila in the Philippines. The church is renowned as the house of the Las Piñas Bamboo Organ, a pipe organ made mostly with bamboo pipes. To the right of the church is an old Spanish convent converted into a gift shop and the entrance for observing the organ up close. Also in the church complex is St. Josephs Academy, a primary and secondary education school established in 1914.
On November 5, 1795, the Archbishop of Manila assigned Las Piñas, then a small town of farmers and fishermen, to the Augustinian Recollects to establish a new church. Father Diego Cera de la Virgen del Carmen, a native of Spain, traveled from Mabalacat, Pampanga province and arrived on the town on the second day of Christmas 1795. Soon after, he started building the church made from adobe (volcanic) stones in the Earthquake Baroque architectural style.
Father Diego Cera was a very gifted man. He was a natural scientist, chemist, architect, community leader, as well as organist and organ builder. He also built the organs for the Manila Cathedral and San Nicolas de Tolentino Church, the main Augustinian church in the old walled city of Manila. In 1816, when the stone church was almost complete, he started building the organ made of bamboo and completed the instrument in 1824.
In 1914, Belgian missionaries Fr. Jose van Runenkelen and Fr. Victor Zaiel of Congregatio Immaculati Cordis Mariae (CICM) established St. Josephs School next to the church to foster literacy in the parish community. The school, which started as a grade school, eventually included secondary education and was renamed as St. Joseph Academy. Between 1971 and 1975, with the help from the community and neighboring towns, the church was restored by a National Artists of the Philippines for architecture Francisco Mañosa with Architect Ludwig Alvarez back to its 19th-century look. The event coincided with the return of the Las Piñas Bamboo Organ on March 13, 1975 after three years of rehabilitation in Bonn, Germany, reviving the organ back to its original state. On May 9, 1975, the bamboo organ made its inaugural concert at the newly-renovated church and surrounding buildings. The parish falls under the jurisdiction of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Parañaque. Currently, the parish priest of the Las Piñas church is Rev. Msgr. Mario Josefino Martinez, PC, JCD since July 1, 2011.
The Las Piñas Bamboo Organ in St. Joseph Parish Church, the parish church of Las Piñas City in the Philippines, is a nineteenth-century pipe organ made almost entirely from bamboo. The organ is declared a National Cultural Treasure of the country.
Since 1992, Prof. Armando V. Salarza has been the titular organist of the Bamboo Organ. He is also the Artistic Director of the International Bamboo Organ Festival, the longest-running international music festival held in the Philippines. The National Museum of the Philippines officially declared the Las Piñas Bamboo Organ a National Cultural Treasure on March 11, 2004 for its uniqueness and significance.
my brother and I with Sr. Armando Salarza,titular organist of Bamboo Organ I even bought my younger sister to the Bamboo Organ! I play the Bamboo(Pipe Organ Workshop last summer) Organ dring Sunday Masses..my brother and I with Sr. Cealwyn Tagle,Organ builder/ restorer of Bamboo Organ