HomeThe Journal of Historyvol. 62 no. 1 (2016)

‘With a Spirit Apostolically Bold’: Mindanao’s First Christian Century

Greg Hontiveros



One crucial element in the historical development of our country is the collision of two universalist religions in the island of Mindanao and its outlying islands. This meeting of two irresistible forces as early as the 16th century, with their concomitant impact on the territorial divisions and the cultural ethos of the inhabitants, have resonance until today, as one can glean these from the news. That many of the current events seem to repeat what occurred almost five centuries ago, it behooves upon everyone to discern and analyze the events of the first century of Christianity in Mindanao, and pick from them the useful lessons for our time. This paper endeavors to draw the main threads and the mindset of those bygone times, how a selection of key events and the dramatis personae have moulded the succeeding historical events half a millennium later.