Like the Santa Monica Church Complex in Sarrat, Ilocos Norte, the Church of Sta. Monica in Pan-ay, Capiz is equally magnificent. The first church was built by Father Miguel Murguia in 1774 and it was heavily damaged by a typhoon on January 17, 1875. Under the supervision of Father Jose Beloso, the current church was built rebuilt in 1884. By virtue of the National Historical Institute Resolution No. 3, the church was declared as a national historical landmark in 1997. Romantically called as Dakong Lingganay in Hilingaynon, this giant bell was made out of 76 sacks of coins donated by the townsfolk upon the urgings of Father Beloso. He commissioned Don Juan Reina to cast the bell. Five feet high, seven feet in diameter and 10.4 ton in weight, Dakong Lingganay was the largest in Asia and the third in the world when it was finished on December 12, 1878. The sound of the bell can be heard as far as seven kilometers.
On July 31, 2001, the Santa Monica Church was one of the Philippine colonial churches declared by the National Museum as a national cultural treasure. The National Commission for Culture and the Arts had identified and selected it as one of 26 Spanish Colonial Era churches to be under its conservation program.
Going to Santa Monica Church is quite easy. When you’re in Roxas City, take a tricycle and tell the driver to bring you to the terminal of van or jeep going to Pan-ay. There are also tricycles plying the Roxas-Pan-ay route. Pan-ay is just 7.4 kilometers away from Roxas City.