The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898 - Volume 21 of 55 1624 Explorations by early navigators, descripti

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The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898

Explorations by early navigators, descriptions of the islands and their peoples, their history and records of the catholic missions, as related in contemporaneous books and manuscripts, showing the political, economic, commercial and religious conditions of those islands from their earliest relations with European nations to the close of the nineteenth century,

Volume XXI, 1624

Edited and annotated by Emma Helen Blair and James Alexander Robertson with historical introduction and additional notes by Edward Gaylord Bourne.


Preface 9 Documents of 1624

Ecclesiastical affairs of the Philippines. Miguel García Serrano, and others; 1574-1624 19 Conflict between civil and religious authorities in Manila. [Unsigned and undated; 1624?] 79 Seminary for Japanese missionaries. Alvaro de Messa y Lugo, and others; Manila, July 23-August 5 84 Extract from letter to Felipe IV. Miguel García Serrano; Manila, August 15 95 Royal orders regarding the religious. Felipe IV; Madrid, August-December 98

Early Recollect missions in the Philippines. Andrés de San Nicolas, Luis de Jesús, and Juan de la Concepción. (Extracts from their respective works, covering the history of the missions to the year 1624.) 111 Bibliographical Data 319


Title-page of _Historia general de los religiosos descalzos ... del gran padre ... San Augustin_, by Andres de San Nicolas (Madrid, 1664); photographic facsimile from copy in library of Edward E. Ayer, Chicago. 109 Title-pages (the first engraved) to _Historia general de los religiosos descalzos ... del gran padre ... San Augustin_, by Luis de Jesús, Augustinian Recollect (Madrid, 1681); photographic facsimiles from copy in library of Edward E. Ayer, Chicago. 187, 189 Title-page of volume iv of _Historia general de Philipinas_, by Juan de la Concepción, Augustinian Recollect (Manila, 1788); photographic facsimile from copy in library of Harvard University. 261


This volume, dated 1624, is entirely devoted to religious matters, ecclesiastical or missionary in their scope. The current documents for that year are concerned with conflicts between the diocesan authorities and the religious orders, and between the civil and religious authorities in Manila; the defeat by the Audiencia of the late Governor Fajardo's attempt to found a seminary for the training of Japanese missionaries to be sent to labor in their own country; and efforts by the Spanish government to check the assumptions of the religious orders. Then follows a historical account of the early Recollect missions in the islands, down to the year 1624, compiled from the works of Andrés San Nicolas, Luis de Jesús, and Juan de la Concepción.

A document entitled "Ecclesiastical affairs in the Philippines" contains letters, decrees, etc., bearing on this subject, dated from 1574 to 1624. Instructions to Gomez Perez Dasmariñas (1574) jealously restrict to the crown or its officials all exercise of the royal patronage; and give minute details of the course to be pursued by the governor and the provincials of the religious orders in matters where that right is involved. This is followed by various official documents issued in the controversy between Archbishop Serrano and the religious orders (1622-24) regarding the right claimed for archbishop and bishops to exercise the same jurisdiction and authority over the religious of the orders, when charged with the care of souls, as over the secular clergy. Serrano fortifies his position by various royal decrees and papal bulls. These documents show that much laxity has prevailed in selecting missionaries for the Indians, some of these teachers not even knowing the language of the natives to whom they minister; also that the friars claim even greater authority over their parishioners than that exercised by the archbishop and bishops in whose dioceses their missions are located. On June 20, 1622, the archbishop begins his official visit in the parish of Dilao (near Manila); and his edict announcing this calls upon the people of the parish to bring to him any complaints or information that they may have regarding any fault, illegal act, or neglect of duty in their cura or parish priest. Fray Alonso de Valdemoro was then in charge of the Dilao mission; refusing to obey the archbishop's commands, he is excommunicated by the latter, and sentenced to imprisonment in a monastery. But the Audiencia refuse to support the archbishop, who accordingly writes a letter to the king complaining of the resistance made by the friars. Felipe IV, in a decree dated August 14, 1622, orders that the missions in the Philippines shall be subject to the provisions of another decree (issued June 22 of the same year) promulgated for the missions in Nueva España. This provides that the same procedure be followed therein as in the missions of Peru; that the missions remain in charge of the orders, but that hereafter the religious be not placed in charge of missions; that they shall be subject to the archbishop in matters pertaining to the churches and the care of souls, but that anything relating to the personal character of such priest shall be privately referred to his superior in the order, who shall try and correct him.

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