The original San Miguel Church was constructed in 1630s as an act of gratitude by a Spanish governor-general who had miraculously escaped death on a military campaign.
The church also ministered to Japanese Christians fleeing persecution under the Tokugawa Shogunate, and since many of these exiles belonged to the samurai, or warrior, class, the church was dedicated to Saint Michael, the dragon-slayer.
The present church, notable for the beautiful symmetry of its twin bell towers, follows the mold of European Baroque architecture. Because of its proximity, the church is often associated with Malacanang Palace.