blank book library batanes

Blank Book Library

In Mahatao, the town next to Basco, there lies San Carlos Borromeo, a 19th century built church painted in opalescent white which houses a secret in its seemingly storage room — a library filled with rows of hardbound books with blank pages.

As initiated by the Asian Public Intellectuals Fellowship of The Nippon Foundation, the library aims to encourage visitors to write and contribute something that will trigger not just a think habit but also a do attitude.

The room is almost empty but it is filled with details in every corner: blank shelves on the other side, a blackboard, a chair, a table, an old drum set, and some religious artifacts. There is also a blue painted door under one of the shelves plus a note saying it is a restroom, but it is locked at the time of our visit. Then there is also stairway leading to a sofa set and probably some rooms tucked deep within the second floor.

Open for visitors everyday, some of the books here are filled with prayers, appreciation, rants, and one’s deepest desires, all written in different languages.

How’s that as a chance to leave something in the beautiful and peaceful island of Batanes? Surely, it is a little haven that’s just waiting to be filled.

mahatao church


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