Footer

The Building of the Vigan Cathedral (Part XII)

Two days later the legal document made by the Alcalde was ready and handed over to Fr. Blaquier, who in turn produced the two documents mentioned above, made in Santa Cruz in 1794. The first document states:

Santa Cruz, Laguna, April 5, 1794, the bishop declares in the presence of Dr. Don Eustaquio Benson (his secretary) that he gave and gives anew to the cathedral of Vigan certain precious things (alajas) and other items which are kept in his palace, since the actual church of Vigan has no decent place to store them. They are:
1. a great custodia of gold decorated with diamond jewels and other stones (it is probably already entered in the books of the cathedral; if not, then this declaration should serve this purpose).
2. Two great and beautiful cabinets standing in the oratory of the palace, and whatever is contained in them, namely; two copes and two chasubles of black velvet with silver fringes, a piece of damasco and other things, in short, everything in these two cabinets is donated to the cathedral of Vigan.
3. In the smaller cabinet in the oratory where the bishop vests for the masses, there is a colored vestment with golden embroidery. It belongs together with the other vestments to the cathedral, although the bishop does not remember the things in detail. It is the will of the bishop that a complete set of vestments of each color remains in the oratory, a white one and another colored vestment with silk embroidery for feastdays. Everything also goes to the church of Vigan.
4. In another smaller cabinet (comoda) there are the albs, amices, corporals and other white altar cloths. Three sets should remain in the oratory, the rest goes to the church of Vigan. If the bishop should be able to return to Ilocos, (if God gives him health), he will place these things into the big cabinets to avoid any doubt. But it is also his will that the two cabinets remain in the oratory with all its contents until the new church is finished together with the sacristy; then there will be a decent place to transfer them.
5. The great Santo Cristo of ivory with its stands is also donated to the church, but it should remain in the oratory until the work of the church is finished and a place is ready for it.
6. He has in his oratory two silver candlesticks, they belong to the church.
7. He gives also to the church of Vigan the cope and the entire vestment with the pearl color with golden embroidery which is found in the cabinet where he keeps his pontifical vestments.
8. The bishop donates to Our Lady of the Rosary of Vigan a pectoral cross of gold with relics and a golden chain and a green silk case with two rings, one of emerald, the other of purple color; they are in the box with the pontificalia.
9. He donates a second pectoral cross of rubies to Our Lady of the Rosary with a golden chain which is left in Vigan. All these things should from now on pertain to the church of Vigan.
10. The bishop furthermore declares that the wine for the masses, the nails, the pickaxes and axes, the iron and the other things that belong to the work of the church are stored in the bodegas in the palace, together with two barrels of tar. All these belong to the church of Vigan.
The original of this testament was to be sent to VeryReverend Fr. Definidor Fray Agustin Pedro Blaquier, a copy, authorized by my secretary was to be sent to the Provisor and Vicar General, Don Manuel Basa so that he could execute what the bishop determined.
The second document is shorter. There the bishop declares that the watch in his room and a great trunk with a wooden stand, all painted, the trunk with iron cornerplates, belong to Fr. Blaquier. He donates him also the work on the Bible by Calmet and the Roman Breviaries from Madrid. He should however share them with Benson. They have served him so faithfully, without any personal self-vested interest. How he wishes he could give more, but they have to be satisfied with his affection and gratitude.
The original of this second document was to be given to Fr. Blaquier, an authorized copy to his secretary.
Cubells had the two documents copied on April 26 with the help of Don Felix de la Vega, Don Damian Guerrero Salvio and Don Marcelo del Castillo.
(To be continued)