Barasoain Church (also known as Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish) is a Roman Catholic church built in 1630 in Malolos City, Bulacan. Having earned the title as the Cradle of Democracy in the East, the most important religious building in the Philippines, and the site of the First Philippine Republic, the Church is proverbial for its historical importance among Filipinos.
Founded by Augustinian Missionaries in 1859, the church is also renowned for its architectural design and internal adornments. The original church was burned during the outbreak of the Philippine Revolution however, it was renovated. It is about 42 kilometers away from Manila.
The church recorded some of the important events occurred in the country. While it has been a temporary residence of General Aguinaldo, three major events in Philippine History happened in this church: the convening of the First Philippine Congress (September 15, 1898), the drafting of the Malolos Constitution (September 29, 1898 to January 21, 1899), and the inauguration of the First Philippine Republic (January 23, 1899). By Presidential Decree No. 260 , the church was proclaimed as a National Shrine by President Ferdinand Marcos on August 1, 1973. Unusual for newly elected presidents in the Philippines, the church has been a venue in an inaugural affairs. General Emilio Aguinaldo and former president Joseph Estrada were the only two who have been inaugurated in the place.
Historic Barasoain used to be independent from Malolos and this explains the presence of a stone church here. The Parish Church of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel had its first stone edifice in 1871 to replace a temporary one but was burned later. In 1885, the current structure was started while the belltower was constructed in 1889. The church was the scene of the proclamation of Philippine Independence and recently, where Joseph Estrada took his oath of office.
The facade has Neo-Classic touches and its rounded pediment is echoed by the arches and rose window at the lower part.