Its robust faith heritage and continued assimilation into the Cebuano community’s spiritual journey were effectively demonstrated by Casa Gorordo Museum at its participation in Semana Santa 2023.
The beloved house museum was the first in the province to open to the public. It approaches its 40th Anniversary this year with a carefully curated series of activities exhibiting seamless integration into Cebuano’s historical, cultural, social, and spiritual life.
The Casa Gorordo Museum produced another first for Cebu at Semana Santa 2023 in coordination with the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral – the Live Sculpture Interpretation of the 14 Stations of the Cross on the evening of Holy Wednesday, April 5, 2023.
The museum’s century-old carrosas bearing the Segunda Caida and Santa Veronica images were among those at the Pasos, the Cathedral’s annual Holy Wednesday procession. Casa Gorordo’s participation at the Pasos is a treasured house tradition.
“Cebuano culture is deeply rooted in faith; it, in fact, shapes Cebuano’s very identity. Being a heritage showcase and guide to the world that shaped Cebuano cultural identity, Casa Gorordo retains all of the faith-based traditions handed down by the house’s previous owners. The Live Sculpture Interpretation of the Way of the Cross brings this faith identity to an even deeper dimension,” says Florencio Moreño II, Officer-in-charge of the Culture and Heritage Unit of the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation, Inc. (RAFI).
RAFI acquired the then over-a-century-old house from the family of Cebu’s first archbishop, Juan Gorordo. It was restored and opened as a public museum in 1983. RAFI’s CHU, fulfilling its goal of developing a strong sense of cultural identity among local communities, continues to enrich the Casa Gorordo experience with immersive social and religious elements.
Aside from the annual participation in the Pasos, the museum’s house traditions include Sinug sa Casa Gorordo at the close of the Fiesta Senor in January, Sabyag San Juan during St. John the Baptist’s Feastday on June 24, and the display of the house Belen in December.
The house traditions not only provide windows into the religious practices of the colonial Cebuanos of Parian but also opportunities for the renewal of spiritual fervor among the modern-day residents of Cebu City.
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