Marriage and Celebration: Churches in Manila

The month of June, as known in the Philippine tradition as the wedding month, came and went like a breeze of the wind on a rainy day, but that is not a reason for soon-to-be-wedded couples and planners alike to stop finding the perfect church to celebrate the love and exchange of vows. In order to help people to find their perfect venue for their special day, here are some of the best and most sought-after wedding churches in Manila.


San Agustin Church

Iglesia de la Inmaculada Concepción de María de San Agustín

Order of St. Augustin

Intramuros, Manila

Did you know that this beautiful church is not the original establishment? The first one was built in 1571 using bamboo and nipa. Unfortunately, it was burnt down in December 1574. After which, the second establishment was then again destroyed by flames in February 1583. Given its harrowing experiences, the Augustinians decided to build the church using stones. The construction started in 1586 and declared finished on January 19, 1607.

San Agustin Church is declared National Historical Landmark by the government and is also a World Heritage Site stated by UNESCO.


Manila CathedralManila Cathedral

Catedral Basílica Metropolitana de Manila

Dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary as Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception

Plaza de Roma, Intramuros, Manila

Manila Cathedral was built in 1581, having the title of one of the oldest churches in the country. It has gone through several renovations and reconstructions for many reasons. Now, this neo-Romanesque cathedral flaunts beautiful mosaics, stained0glass windows, and marble and metal wares.

Some of the famous couples to tie the knot in Manila Cathedral are Sharon Cuneta and Gabby Concepcion, Dodot Jaworski and Mikee Cojuangco, Nyoy Volante and Mikkie Bradshaw, and Roselle Nava and Allen Tan.


San Sebastian Church

Basílica Menor de San Sebastián

Order of the Augustinian Recollects

Plaza del Carmen, Quiapo, Manila

The construction of San Sebastian Church was done in 1891. It fashions the revival of Gothic architecture in the country. Having said that, San Sebastian Church is the only all-steel church in the Philippines and only prefabricated steel church in the world. Given its uniqueness and beauty, the Philippine government hailed San Sebastian Church as a National Historical Landmark in 1973.

Additional fun fact about this church is that fire and earthquakes have destroyed it for a couple of times (1651, 1859, 1863, 1880). The then parish priest Esteban Martinez hoped to have a church that can resist said calamities and destructions.


Binondo ChurchBinondo Church (Minor Basilica of Saint Lorenzo Ruiz)

Parroquia Basílica de San Lorenzo Ruiz y Nuestra Señora del Santísimo Rosario

Founded by Dominican Priests

Binondo, Manila

You might be wondering why the Minor Basilica of Saint Lorenzo Ruiz or Binondo Church seems to be not your usual Catholic Church. Apparently, it is located in Chinatown or the District of Binondo, Manila. It was said that St. Lorenzo Ruiz, offspring of a Chinese father and Filipino mother, used to train in this church. He is the first saint from the Philippines as Pope John Paul II canonized him in 1987.

Since it is in the heart of Chinatown, you will hear the mass celebrated in Filipino, Mandarin, Hokkien and English languages.


Malate ChurchMalate Church (Our Lady of Remedies Parish)

Dedicated to Nuestra Señora de los Remedios

Malate, Manila

Standing near Manila Bay and Plaza Rajah Sulayman is the Malate Church. Nuestra Señora de los Remedios is the patroness of childbirth. Given such, you will see the revered statue of Virgin Mary as Our Lady of remedies. It came from Spain dated back in 1624.

Though we see it now as beautiful and charming as ever, like other old churches in the country, it has survived numerous damages. During the British occupation in 1762, the church has been their headquarters, standing many damages to its structure. A typhoon in 1868 also inflicted serious harm in Malate Church. Aside from that, it was burned down during the Japanese occupation. Nevertheless, after all the hardships it has been through, Malate Church stood tall.


UST ChurchSantísimo Rosario Parish (UST Chapel)

Founded by Dominican Priests

Sampaloc, Manila

Msgr. Michael O’ Doherty, D.D. of Archdiocese of Manila has issued a decree ordering the building of the Santísimo Rosario Parish or most commonly known as the UST Chapel. The said chapel was established on March 21, 1942. This school chapel is not the typical one given its old history and outstanding architecture.

As stated in their vision, Santísimo Rosario Parish is rooted in Christ and devoted to Mary, as instilled with the spirit of St. Dominic.




St. Pancratius Chapel ManilaSt. Pancratius Chapel

Managed by Vincentian fathers

Paco, Manila

Nestled in Manila City’s Paco Park is St. Pancratius Chapel, also known as Paco Chapel. This round chapel is perfect for intimate weddings and other church celebrations as it can only host up to 150 guests. Paco Chapel is the only one to be found in a park. Aside from memorable weddings, you can also hold photo shoots in this church and nearby area as you appreciate its historic ambiance.

To mention a few celebrities who got married in Paco Chapel are Jay Contreras and Sarah Abad, and Kelly Misa and Carlos Fernandez.


Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Shrine exteriorOur Lady of Mt. Carmel Shrine

Our Lady of Mt. Carmel

New Manila, Quezon City, Metro Manila

The parish was established on February 17, 1975, with the titular Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. The feast day that it celebrates is every 16th of July. Many people admire the architectural design and peaceful ambiance of this church. It is perfect for meditation and intimate celebrations such as weddings.







Santo Domingo ChurchSanto Domingo Church (National Shrine of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary of La Naval de Manila)

Santuario Nacional de Nuestra Señora del Santísimo Rosario de La Naval de Manila

Dominican Order

Quezon City, Manila

This beautiful church of Santo Domingo is the largest one in Metro Manila and one of the biggest churches in Asia. Before it has become this grand, there were several erected churches prior to such. A small church was built with light materials on August 6, 1587. Unfortunately, an earthquake destroyed it. The Dominicans then thought of having a bigger church with stronger materials. Thus, resulting to its second church out of stones and inaugurated on April 9, 1592. There have been more buildings as disasters and calamities continue to challenge the big church.

The current building of Santo Domingo Church is the sixth church already in its new location. Mar Roxas and Korina Sanchez decided to get married in Santo Domingo Church.


Ermita ChurchErmita Church (Archdiocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Guidance)

La Ermita de Nuestra Señora de Guía

Ermita, Manila

What makes Ermita Church special is it hosts the Marian image of Our Lady of Guidance or Nuestra Señora de Guia. It is said that this Marian image is the oldest one in the country. Ermita Church had its humble beginnings as it was made of bamboo, nipa and molave wood to house the image of Our Lady of Guidance. Spanish soldiers found the image during the reign of Miguel Lopez de Legazpi in 1571. The simple shrine became a chapel in 1606 and then called La Ermita.



San Miguel Church

San Miguel Church (Regal Parish and National Shrine of Saint Michael and the Archangels)

Founded by the Jesuits

San Miguel, Manila

San Miguel Church is also known as Malacañang Church as it is very near to the Malacañang Palace. This Catholic church is dedicated to the seven archangels namely Saint Michael, Saint Gabriel, Saint Raphael, Saint Uriel, Saint Selatiel, Saint Jhudiel and Saint Barachiel.

San Miguel Church started as a stone church in 1603, initiated by the Jesuits in Paco, Manila. Unfortunately, the 1645 Luzon earthquake has heavily damaged it. In 1913, San Miguel Church has been reconstructed. In terms of its aesthetics, it flaunts a European Baroque architecture and symmetrical bell towers.

Additional information about this notable church is that on May 1, 1954, former and late president Ferdinand E. Marcos and Imelda Romualdez were married at San Miguel Church.


Our Lady of the Abandoned MarikinaOur Lady of the Abandoned

Dambana ng Ina ng Mga Walang Mag-ampon

Marikina City, Metro Manila

In the small city of Marikina, you will find this gorgeous church famously known as “OLA.” In 1902, there was a news that an image of Virgin Mary appeared. You can find the image in OLA Parish Church.  Pope Benedict XVI has venerated the image miraculous in 2005. It has gone through several reconstructions, but the traditional architecture and segmental arches are still the same. You will appreciate its beauty more when the chandeliers are on lighting the whole church with soft yellow.




The wedding season may have been behind us now, but that doesn’t mean that weddings can only be done at specific times of the year. It only needs time for preparation, reservation of venues (since some of these churches tend to be packed with weddings, baptisms, and all sorts of celebrations all throughout the year), proper budgeting, and discerning that the person you are going to marry is the person that you see yourself with through all the blessings and pains that life may bring.

We hope that the listed above churches in Manila for wedding would be a great help for you. Happy hunting!

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