Fonacier was head of the Aglipayan Church between 1833 and 1946. In politics Fonacier was elected to the first Philippine Assembly and as senator in 1919
Santiago Fonacier studied at the Aglipayan Church (or Iglesia Filipina Independiente) seminary and was ordained priest in 1902. He became a teacher at the seminary for two years but later became an editor of Spanish periodicals, such as La Lucha which survived from the 1900's to 1941.
Fonacier made translations into Ilocano of Jose Rizal's novels, Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo.
In 1912, Fonacier was elected to the first Philippine Assembly and as senator in 1919.
In 1933 Fonacier became Aglipayan bishop of Pangasinan and rose to the highest rank of the Iglesia Filipina Independiente Church when he succeeded Gregorio Aglipay after the latter's death. However, Fonacier's reign as Obispo Maximo was marred by scandals as doctrinal differences arose, resulting in a schism and court litigation that lasted years and ended with Fonacier being ousted as bishop in 1946 and excommunicated in 1957.
21 May 1885
to 8 December 1977
#1677, 21 May 1985
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