WHY OUR LADY OF THE GATE? One may ask: And why is the Daraga Church named after Our Lady of the Gate? The story stems from the life of the Fray
Luis de San Jose, a simple Franciscan lay brother who lived in the 18th century and spend most of his life in the Franciscan
convent in the city of Avila, Spain where he worked as a gardener and porter.
Allegedly, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to him during the
flood and saved his life. There upon he had a picture of the Virgin drawn by an artist and put it in the lobby of the convent
where he often paid respect to his Lady. Not only did he venerate the picture of the Virgin Mary, but he also spread the devotion
to the Immaculate Conception among the simple people who used to flock around the lobby of the convent to venerate her picture.
Now, the lobby of receiving room of the convent is called the
Spanish porteria. That is why that picture came to be called Nuestra Seņora de la Porteria. And since Fray Luis had led a
saintly life, the Franciscan Friars who built the Daraga church put it in his memory under the protection of the Blessed Virgin
mary, under the title of Nuestra Seņora de la Porteria or Our Lady of the Gate and had the feast celebrated on the Nativity
of Our Lady on September 8th.
BY WAY OF CONCLUSION
This, then is our church...a blend of the old and new, historical witness to the
artistic genius of our ancestors and the functional house of the People of God in Daraga where we meet every Sunday to thank
God our Father for His daily care for us and to express and strengthen our brotherhood as we celebrate the Eucharist in an
atmosphere of peace and joy.