THE administrators of the Archdiocesan Shrine of San Nicolas de Tolentino Parish in Barangay San Nicolas, Cebu City welcomes further archaeological studies after artifacts like coral stones and what is believed to be human bones were discovered in a construction site inside the Parish compound last week.
Monsignor Roger Fuentes, parish priest of the Archdiocesan Shrine of San Nicolas de Tolentino Parish, said the bones (believed to be remains of at least three dead persons) and artifacts (believed to be remnants of the old parish before it was bombed during the World War II) were discovered by construction workers in the site where a two-storey "Center for the Poor" building is being constructed.
The construction site which used to be a vacant lot in the parish compound is located at the left side back portion of the church's altar.
Gerry Paragoso, a foreman, said the human bones and artifacts were first discovered by one of his men, on Friday, May 7, 2021 - the second week since they started with their works on the site.
"Bag-o pa man ning gikawtan namo, pero kining tanang sa bangag (almost 14) naay bukog pero dili ingong daghan, ginagmay. (We just started the excavation here for the building's foundation. Almost all of the areas we dug up here have bones, but not that many)," he told SunStar Cebu.
Fuentes said upon the discovery of the bones and the artifacts, they immediately coordinated with the Commission on the Cultural Heritage of the Church of the Archdiocese of Cebu and the Cultural and Historical Affairs Commission (CHAC) of Cebu City who then visited the site and conducted initial studies on the bones and artifacts found.
Being the second oldest parish in Cebu, Fuentes said, the discovery was not something unusual.
"Wherever you make a hole beside the church, you will see the same thing. That's how historical is the place," he said in a mix of English and Cebuano.
"I told them if you want to make a serious study, we can always get a side of the place (inside the parish compound) where you can do excavation," he added. (WBS)