The Feast of the Nuestra Señora de la Regla (Birhen sa Regla)
The Feast of Birhen sa Regla is held in the 3rd week of November, 21st.
The biggest celebration (the culmination of this week-long feast) is usually held on the third Sunday of November.
Source: Jayr Ngujo, Under Birhen Sa Regla Church Lapu-Lapu City's Facebook Page
Source: his photo taken in 1910 shows the old Opon Church, which is known for its Virgen de la Regla. From http://g1d.me
This year, 2018, will be the 283rd annual feast of the Virgen dela Regla Parish or Nuestra Señora de la Regla, which is located in B.M. Dimataga St., Lapu-lapu City, Cebu, Philippines.
Francisco Avalle, who was the first priest of Opon, now called Lapu-lapu, brought the Virgen de la Regla painting from Andalucia, Spain in 1735. He introduced the image to the community members and church-goers of Lapu-lapu. Many of the Virgin’s believers claim that the Virgen de la Regla grants their hearts’ desires, especially if they pray to her fervently.
Some Things You May Not Know About the Virgen dela Regla
Source: Virgen dela Regla Parish Facebook Page
- The devotion the Virgen dela Regla started in Africa, thus the dark-skinned depiction of her.
- Virgen dela Regla = Patroness of the Rule of St. Augustine
- The original painting brought by Father Valle and the statue are available at a special section of the church. Devotees can queue up to pray to the Virgen. There is a glass enclosure, though.
- The devotion to the Virgen dela Regla started with St. Augustine who also hand-carved the very first image of the Virgen de Regla.
- Virgen de Regla, or Lady of the Rule, got her name from St. Augustine who dedicated her to the rules he created to be followed by the members of his order.
- According to Professor Jobers Bersales, an archaeologist and writer, the correct name is Virgen de Regla (Lady of Rule) and not Virgen dela Regla (Lady of the Rule).
- The Virgen dela Regla Parish was built between 1735 and 1744. It was built near the sea and originally built from coral blocks.
- The Virgen dela Regla Paris would have been the oldest church in the country had the Dutch priests assigned there (1960) not torn the original church down.
- The church’s original coral blocs are at the University of San Carlos museum.
Every year, the town people celebrate the Feast Day of the Virgen dela Regla (or Virgen de Regla) during the 20th and 21st day of November. The novena (which starts on November 12), is one of the main highlight of the celebration.
Another one is the fluvial procession. After the novena, the people would gather up on the Marcelo Fernan Bridge to witness the Fluvial parade that starts from Pacific Cebu Resort in Mactan to Muelle Osmeña Wharf, passing the sceneries in Plantation Bay, Blue Water, Tambuli Hotel, Shangri-La, Moevenpick and many more luxurious establishments lining the shores of Mactan.
To get there, you can take a 23D jeepney from Mandaue to get to Opon. If you are coming from the Mactan International Airport, you can take the MI-05A route. However, it is more convenient if you choose a cab/taxi especially if you’re not familiar with the streets.
Click HERE for the Google Map link. Just turn on your phone's GPS, save this link and you're good to go.