At long last I found a perfect time to write this what I call introspective write-up… It may sound anew to you since I’m voicing out my meditative inner emotions in this rainy season! Well, maybe our gloomy weather tells me to write about something that would accidentally strike again our own personal guilt! Let me share with you another experience which happened during Lenten Season sometime last week of March this year.
Annually, it was my personal pledge to participate in the Lenten activity entitled Visita Iglesia. This is being conducted every Maundy Thursday or Good Friday before the proclamation of the 7 – Last Words. If you can still remember, I wrote a pretty much the same article last year about my Visita Iglesia 2012. Of course, this time I visited again 7 different churches around Metro Manila.
Thanked God that during this year’s visita, I’ve had sufficient amount of strength and energy to finish this soul-mesmerizing activity after my night shift job. Here is the chronological order of the churches that I’ve visited:
1. Saint Paul the Apostle Parish. The name of the church may sound familiar to you if you’re living nearby the Tomas Morato Street or West Avenue of Quezon City. This church is located at #3 Scout Rallos corner Timog Avenue, Mother Ignacia & Scout Santiago Street Barangay Laging Handa, Quezon City.
How did I get there? Well since every year, our LRT and MRT trains are having their maintenance during Lenten season, I rode a bus from EDSA Magallanes to Quezon Avenue. I crossed the other side of the highway using the overpass and from there I walked along Mother Ignacia Street until I reached Timog Avenue. It’s a very long-walk, about 15 to 20 minutes.
2. St. Jude Thaddeus Quasi Parish was the second church that I visited. It is a 10-minute walk across Delta going to West Avenue.
It is located inside a subdivision at Zamboanga Street, Quezon City. This parish looks less than a decade old. It’s small but I could say it’s definitely a solemn place.
3. The third church that I visited was another one from Quezon City; it is the Heart’s of Jesus and Mary Parish. This church is also located inside a private subdivision at Daily Mirror Street, West Triangle, Quezon City.
This was another 15-minute walk from the second church but if you have a car, you can just drive to get there. If you’ll be coming from EDSA, just drive along the Quezon Avenue going to Quiapo lane then just before reaching Delta (West Avenue), you can see a McDonald’s establishment; just turn right and there is signage that would lead you to the said church.
This church is quite big and stylish. One thing that I noticed, it has a gymnasium beside it so during the time that I pray, the people at the gymnasium were very noisy as it disturbed the church’s visitors.
4. The next church that I visited was one of the biggest and famous churches in Metro Manila, the Sto. Domingo Church. From the previous church, I walked certain kilometers to reach the highway ignoring the scorching heat of the sun. After that, I took a jeepney ride to get there since the location of the church is quite far from Heart’s of Jesus and Mary Parish.
As usual, this church has lots of visitors and you could actually feel the melodramatic presence of the Lenten Season. Don’t be surprised if you see around people with illnesses. Also, don’t be too sensitive or irritated because they are the same people with faith like ours and asking for the mercy of our Lord God above.
5. I was almost halfway when I visited the Holy Family Parish. It is located inside a subdivision at Madre Silva corner Lilac Street, Roxas District, Quezon City. From Sto. Domingo Church, it was another jeepney ride along Quezon Avenue. From the highway, I walked another few kilometers to reach the church.
How was I able to navigate the exact location of this rare address? With the help of my iPad’s GPS. The map might not detect the actual location of the church but it helped me trace the name of the streets. Quite an adventure, huh!?
6. Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish was the second to the last church that I visited. It is located at #28 Scout Ybardolaza Street, Kamuning Quezon City.
It was established on October 3, 1941 and it celebrates its annual fiesta on the movable feast Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart according to the liturgical calendar of the Catholic Church, the Friday right after Corpus Christi, also known as the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ.
7. It was an honor for me that Our Lady of Victories Church was the last of the seven churches that I visited. Not just because it was the last but also because of the uniqueness of this church. It is located at #2 Cannon Road corner Valley Road, New Manila, Quezon City.
What’s so rare about this church is that, the Tridentine Mass is celebrated exclusively in Latin. I can still remember the time when I went there. The presiding priest was a foreigner and they were having the Parish Recollection activity.
If you’re thinking that I’ve only had church hopping, which means that after I reached one church I immediately went to the other, you’re definitely wrong! Of course, I still observed the conduct of the Stations of the Cross per church visit.
When you say personal pledge, it means personal sacrifice as well. It doesn’t mean that you have to stab yourself with wounds or nail yourself at the cross to take the word sacrifice literally, but it really depends on how truthful you are with yourself and with your faith.
You can tell me that this article is not relevant with time because you might say, “what the hell? It’s August and we’re about to celebrate the Mooncake festival or just the right time to prepare for the coming of the ‘ber’ months.”
For me, there’s no perfect time to reflect because our Lord God above is not also choosing for a perfect time in showering us with blessings or to always help us in times of trouble! (AAP)