Cebu's heritage churches QR-coded

INFORMATION about churches and other heritage sites in southern Cebu is now accessible anytime, anywhere through a mobile phone.

Interactive QR code tourism markers have been installed at centuries-old churches located in the different municipalities of Central Visayas. When a phone scans the code, information programmed in the black squares and dots is revealed.

Powered by QR codes and Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, the installation of the markers is part of a nationwide digital tourism campaign by Smart Communications (Smart) to promote historical and cultural sites through the use of mobile technology.

Cebu Archdiocesan Commission for the Cultural Heritage of the Church together with Smart and start-up InnoPub Media recently unveiled the markers.

The event, part of Smart’s “Road to 2021: Digital Evangelization” initiative, served to kick off the 500th anniversary of Christianity in the Philippines in 2021.

The QR-coded heritage churches in southern Cebu are Sta. Ana Parish and Diocesan Shrine in Barili, St. Catherine of Alexandria Parish Church in Carcar City, Nuestra Señora del Pilar Parish Church in Sibonga, St. Michael the Archangel Parish in Argao, San Guillermo de Aquitana Parish Church in Dalaguete, Nuestra Señora del Patrocinio de Maria Parish Church in Boljoon, Our Lady of Immaculate Concepcion Church in Oslob, St. Michael the Archangel Parish Church in Samboan, and San Gabriel Parish Church in Santander.

“Now, there is marriage between heritage work and the utilization of technology,” said Fr. Brian Brigoli, head of the Cebu Archdiocesan Commission for the Cultural Heritage of the Church.

Also present in the unveiling of markers was lawyer Maria Jane Paredes, Smart public affairs assistant vice president and center head for Visayas and Mindanao.

“Smart supports heritage conservation efforts. Technology can contribute to the preservation of historical and cultural significance of heritage sites,” she said. “With the help of mobile technology and QR codes, residents and tourists can learn more about the culture of an area.”