The prelature has an extension of 8.115 km and about 124 thousand inhabitants. 70% of the population is indigenous and belongs to the villages of Ngäbe-Buglé, Naso, and Bribrí. In the prelature there are over 60.000 catholics.
The main folk dances are of Afro-Antillean and Indigenous origin. There are several types of typical dances in Bocas del Toro, there are those that can be danced among couples either when it is celebrated birthday or other special feast. Among these dances the most famous are: Cuadrillas Antillanas, Calidonia dance, Palo de Maio; they wear traditional, typical, and afro-antillean dresses as well.
There are people who say that the last indigenous leader who lived in this region, who had a strong personality and was a relentless fighter, was known as “Boka Toro”.
On October 6th, 1502, sailing with his crew from the Caribbean Sea to the Carenero island in order to make repairs in one of his ships, due to the strong storms and to stock some provision on the neighboring island, whose name was Bastimentos, Columbus saw a rock that had the shape of a “lying bull with its mouth open”.
He was born on January 25th, 1958 in Puerto Armuelles, province of Chiriquí, Panama. Prelate Bishop of Bocas del Toro, Panama. His episcopal ordination was on January 21st, 2008.
He studied Philosophy and Theology at the faculty of San Vicente Ferrer of Valencia (Spain), finishing his studies in 1982. He was ordained deacon in Valencia on October 31st, 1981 and on October 24th, 1982 he was ordained presbyter by Bishop Martín Legarra OAR, at San Agustín College in Panama.
After returning to Panama, to San José parish, where he was a vicar parish priest and worked at the vocational center until 1987. He kept on his work as a formator at the vocational center of Balmoral. In 1989 he moved again to Guatemala, where he was a formator at the San Agustín seminar. In 1998 he was appointed to carry out the pastoral ministry, first in Totonicapán, then in Quetzaltenango and once again in Totonicapán. After the provincial chapter of 2007, he moved again to Panama, to the parish of San José do Almirante, in the mission of Bocas del Toro, where he currently lives.



Comarca Ngäbe-Buglé

Head office

Provincia de Bocas del Toro


Dólar USA





Territorial Extension

4 5843,9 km²



Constituted Diocese

17 de octubre de 1962