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CBCP mourns death of church architect

CBCP mourns death of church architect

Fr. Alex Bautista succumbs to complications caused by myasthenia gravis, a neuromuscular disease, on July 9.

By CBCP News

July 10, 2020

Manila, Philippines

The bishops’ cultural heritage body mourned the death of celebrated church architect and priest Fr. Alex Bautista.

The Episcopal Commission for the Cultural Heritage of the Church expressed its condolences to the Tarlac diocese and those who are mourning the passing of the priest.

In a statement, ECCHC chairman Bishop Julito Cortes expressed their gratitude for the priest’s service for the Church and for the people.

“He was one of our experts, a church cultural heritage crusader,” Bishop Cortes said.

In the midst of the “devastating news”, he said that it is consoling to know that Fr. Bautista left “a solid body of work as a priest and an architect”.

“All over the country, and even in China, he has left beautiful churches and sacred structures which he designed, advised, or built himself,” he said.

Aside from designing churches, Fr. Bautista is also known as the one who designed the altar and the papal chair at the Quirino Grandstand in Manila during the Mass of Pope Francis in January 2015.

The priest has also been described as a “rare talent” — i.e., “a full-fledged pastor of souls, but also a practicing architect for church purposes”.

“He is one priest who is passionate and truly competent when it comes to sacred architecture and liturgical art,” added Bishop Cortes.

Fr. Bautista was the ECCHC’s consultant for church architecture from 2011-2013. He also taught at cultural heritage classes at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila.

A speaker in many ecclesial gatherings, Fr. Bautista is one that experts tapped to give a paper presentation for the 12th Biennial National Convention of Cultural Heritage Workers set to be held early next year.

Fr. Bautista died in a Manila hospital on July 9 from complications caused by myasthenia gravis, a neuromuscular disease. He was 50.