The Mysterious Sto. Niño de Tondo Parish Church

In the heart of Tondo Manila lies a church that has been a part of Filipino's life from generations to generations.  This magnanimous church was believed to have completed its construction by 1695,by the end of the term of the dynamic Fr. Duque. It was reconstructed again after being affected by an earthquake  June 3, 1863 and was rebuilt for the third time by Fr. Manuel Diez Gonzalez. The restoration was completed by Fr. Casimiro Herrero minister of Tondo from 1874 to 1880. He must have followed the plans of architect Luciano Oliver designed in 1873. Steel framing was used for the media naranja dome and iron sheets for the roofing, the first time these materials were used in the country. What's interesting about this is that after all the constructions and reconstructions adding to the fact that Tondo is in an impoverished area,the present church has one main central nave and two aisle linked by solid columns. It measures 65 meters long, 22 meters wide, and 17 meters high. The Ionic pilasters and massive buttresses supporting the discordant domes of the bell towers are reminiscent of the Neo-Classical style, typical for its scanty ornamentation. Blind arched openings contrast with rectangular voids and triangular canopies. Twin towers flank the façade. The triangular pediment is characterized by straight lines and a rose window, was not that grand?! This is all because of the strong faith of the Filipinos who believes that everything is possible through the Lord. However, in year 1972 the image of Sto.Nino de Tondo was stolen, since then Metro Manila and other parts of Central Luzon like Pampanga was greatly affected by the non-stop rain that caused flood.the statue of Sto.Nino's body was made out of wood while its face and hands were made out of ivory which of course cost a lot of penny and was said to be from the Spaniards from Acapulco, Mexico year 1570.  After sometime, the Sto,Nino's body was found but not the face and the hands because of this, the former first lady Imelda Marcos offered help to the parish and so the Sto.Nino was temporarily stored in the Malacanang Palace. August 1972, the face and the hands of the Sto.Nino was recovered after the purchaser voluntarily surrendered it's missing parts. Unfortunately, the rain is still pouring mad in Metro Manila so the devotees of the Sto.Nino paraded the miraculously recovered Sto.Nino from Malacanang to Manila and it is said that when the statue was on its righteous place the rain suddenly stopped.
The church was surrounded by different delicacies and statue stores ranging from the nearest streets to the church to the Tayuman LRT station. How I wonder why this is always the set up of the churches in the Philippines? Well, on the other hand, the easiest way to reach the Sto.Nino de Tondo Parish from PUP Sta.Mesa is to ride the Lardizabal-SM San Lazaro-Tayuman route of jeep for only Php.7.00!
                            -Jillian Manlangit BCR 3-1

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Heaven's Delight

Our Lady of the Abandoned Parish, Marikina

Situated in the heart of Marikina, OUR LADY OF THE ABANDONED PARISH also known as  Nuestra Señora de los Desamparados    serves as a home and prayer-house for many Catholics in the city. It is considered a miraculous spot in Marikina, so as the other churches situated here. it is believed that during World War II, there came a time when the Japanese bombarded Marikina and a bomb fell at the bell tower of the church but it didn't explode. That marked its day as a miraculous and sacred haven for Catholic worshippers.

The  entirety of the church will struck you with awe. Adorned in many figures and images of Mary and other saints, it is sure to be a home of rich faith and culture.

After every mass, there are many food hubs a church-goer can choose from. The Marikina Market, just a walk away from the church,

offers a  variety of food selection.  It also is not going to be a burden to get inside for it is the only market in the Philippines that does not emit foul odor (well, as far as i know, based on my own observation in many markets in Manila.) . It is also the only market in the Philippines where customers can actually get their car inside worry-less.

If you are craving for authentic food and service, you need not to walk miles, or ride a jeep. you just have to pass the pedestrian lane from the church and voila! You're in Cafe Kapitan!
Kapitan Moy, the center of culture in Marikina. Below is where the Cafe Kapitan  situated.

Here they serve Italian and French Cuisines and some Filipino dishes.

There are still so much to crave for in Marikina. I just posted some of its specialities. Want to spoil yourself more? Get hooked with Us! :)

Peñano, Irving Kristian S.
BCR 3-1

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Feeding the Soul and your Tummy, LOL! WTF? :]

San Pedro, Laguna's gateway

In the province of Laguna lies a first class municipality, the town of San Pedro.
San Pedro is the gateway of Laguna to Metro Manila.
The town is named after the early Christian leader and one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ, Simon Peter or well known as Saint Peter.

San Pedro, Laguna is also called the Sampaguita Capital of the Philippines.

It also holds the Guiness book of world records for the longest Sampaguita layed from Binan to San Pedro boundary and Muntinlupa to San Pedro boundary. That's why they are listed at the Guiness Book of World Records 2009. Awesome! :D

San Pedro Apostol Parish

Positioned in the locality here is an almost 250 year old church, the San Pedro Apostol Parish.
San Pedro Apostol Parish is very dear to my heart because I was baptized here, I also grew up here as a part of the Friends of Sto. Nino Choir and visiting the Eucharist Chapel, located inside the Parish is my daily habit with my high school friends as my school is located near the parish, Liceo De San Pedro (Catholic School).

After attending the mass, you can enjoy San Pedro, Laguna’s delicacies as the wet and dry market is just a few blocks away from the Parish Church. You can found here the mouth watering foods offered by the town here at Suki Market.
As a home grown citizen here, I strongly suggest that you try the San Pedro’s finest Kutsinta or known in English as Sticky Rice Cake. Kutsinta here is freakin' amazing. LOL! WTF? :)

 You can found it in the wet and dry market or sometimes on the street vendors in front of the church every sunday.
Very timing right? After feeding the soul inside the church, you can feed your hungry tummy too. :)


pancit malabon


Actually you can find lots of food in where the Parish Church is located, from fruits to kakanin, as well as the fast food chains (Jollibee and Chowking), convenient stores (7eleven and mini stop) and bakeries (Julie’s Bakeshop and St. Peter’s Bakery) beside the church. At night, different stalls that are selling main dishes or lutong ulam as we all call it, were spread out the town. Barbeque stands and a whole lot more.

Next stop is the Lugawan here in San Pedro.
Lugaw here is a must eaten comfort food.
Very perfect for our uneasy weather.
As low as 25.00, you can have your scrumptious lugaw.

Done reading? Pack your bags now and go to San Pedro, Laguna. Attend the mass at San Pedro Apostol Parish to feed your mind and soul by the Lord God Almighty and feed your starving belly with your loved ones.
See you! :]

Ma. Razaele N. Garcia
BCR 3-1D

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Faith Under the TIPOLO tree

National Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage in Antipolo City

Remember this song, “Tayo na sa Antipolo at doon maligo tayo sa batis na kung tawagin ay hi-hi-hinulugang taktak…This song shows why people have the reasons to come and visit the place. Antiplo turn out to be so famous because of the places that Antipoleños being so proud of. Being in the catholic country, a lot of renowned churches we can visit but what makes the Antipolo church so special.

Antipolo church is really familiar to me and to my family. As I visited the church last day, one thing comes to my mind, what makes it so different to the other churches. Every Sunday a vast number people going to Antipolo to attend the mass and to visit the Nuestra Señora De La Paz Y Buen Viaje or known as Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage, it was the title given to the Blessed Virgin Mary. Even weekdays, there are also a lot of people going to this church specially those people who will leave the country or will have their journey in life. Many believe that the Blessed Virgin will keep the person safe in its voyage or journey.                                


After the mass, the people can also go to the back of the church where there is Our Lady of Antipolo Exhibit of artifacts of the Virgin at the repository gallery second floor above the sacristy. People can find the different things that the Virgin Marry was used and still using. Many of the belongings of the Virgin Mary were donated by the people like the halos, scepters and crowns. Also public can see there the different kinds of perfumes that use to Virgin Mary and its different and beautiful jewelries that wears when there are any special occasions.  We can also read the History of the Nuestra Senora De La Paz Y Buenviaje.  The history of the statue is also there, according to the history that you can find in the exhibit, the statue of Our Lady of Antipolo were made from hardwood from Mexico, the unknown craftsman made it, he did not claim or date his work for the church. The people always describe it as simple as if it is done in stone, that the face is gentle like the face of the mother drawn within the few lines by a child. There was also a time that the gentle face of the statue of the Virgin Mary was masked its injuries of the Chinese rioters tried to burn and then destroy the image but after what happened, the statue bears no make of the burn. There were times that the statue disappeared but it always found in “TIPOLO” tree where name Antipolo came from. According to the exhibit, the year 1954 declared the Antipolo as the National Shrine of our Lady by the bishops of the Philippines

Pasalubong Center 

But Antipolo is not only famous because of its place but also for the reason of the foods that it offers around the vicinity of the church. In the song “Tayo na sa Antipolo” there are lines that says about suman, mangga, kasoy at balimbing which is famous in the said City. Actually in every month of May, Antipoleños celebrates the SUMAKAH Festival, SUman, MAngga, KAsoy at Hamaka. 

 In one of the store in the pasalubong center that I interviewed, a lot of customer they have come from other cities or province like in Valenzuela, Cavite, many part of Bulacan and Malabon. She also said that every last Sunday of the month, really huge number of people going to the National Shrine of our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage, people always tend to go there because it is also part of the tradition of several of the families in some part of the Philippines.
It is the best to go every Sunday in churches like this where we can be peaceful and be thankful for the blessings that we continuously receiving. It is important to feed our stomach but it is also better to feed our soul by the words of God. =)

Lea G. Balmaceda

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Sunday's made special with love! Minor Basilica of Saint Micheal Archangel,
 a hidden beauty in the Province of Quezon.

 Minor Basilica of St. Michael Archangel


The Minor Basilica of St. Michael Archangel in Tayabas Quezon is known as the longest spanish colonial church in the country, the second biggest in the Philippines and one of the oldest structures. The church was built in 1585 and rebuilt in 1590 by Pedro Bautista ( he become a saint).

Sunday's wouldn't be complete without a mass for it is the food for our soul. August 19, 2012, Sunday, As we go walk around the church, and gazed through the beauty of the surrounding. I realized what an amazing scenery our church has to offer.  It indeed refreshes one's feeling as we go inside the church. 


Tourist come and go, for this church have distributing the bread of life. This is the one spot that tourist had not missed, for it is the known to be one of the most beautiful church in the country. This place also had been the answered prayers for the brides for it has the 2nd longest aisle that pinoy churches had recorded. Its beauty had been declared to be a national shrine.

The church was surrounded by different kinds of mouth- watering delicacies. Your starving tummy will definitely craving for.

Of course Sunday's wouldn't be fun with your tummy full of delicious foods. In Tayabas we welcome you to:  KALYE BUDIN!

Kalye Budin a one stop road full of Tayabas pride, delicious delicacies. It is a few blocks away from the church. It is a Pasalubong Center everyone wants to try, it has the so called BUDIN, the popular cassava cake in Quezon Province.


Aside from Budin, there are others choices of foods you'll definitely like such as nilupak, yemma cakes and candies, uraro, macapuno cake and candies and many more ..

This a place where the food for the soul and stomach is served. Best place for every Filipino Family and tourist to have reunited not only with your love ones but also with our love, GOD!

Lei Anne V. Quinto
BCR  3-1D

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Little Taste of Heaven

National Shrine of Divine Mercy in Marilao, Bulacan

 Delicacies sold outside of the Divine Mercy Church

In that cloudy day last Sunday, I found myself in the middle of the crowd on the busy streets of Sta. Rosa as me and my family were heading to the National Shrine of Divine Mercy to attend mass. People are power walking everywhere. Traffic is making it worst. So we decided to get off the ride and walk to the church. As we walk through the sidewalks, I saw something that triggered my rumbling stomach. Holy cow! There’s a lot of food everywhere. Outside the church, there are a lot of stores selling different things.  A lot of them have pastries and delicacies. There are dainties such as suman, kutsinta and tikoy. Some are sweet delicacies like yema ,pastillas and candies. Others are putopaos, barquillos and many others which are usually bought for pasalubong :D

Areas Where Masses are Held

Interior of the Shrine from the Main Door

Divine Mercy church is huge for it’s about 5 hectares large. It has many religious images and overwhelming faith expressions all over. They have three areas to held masses, one on the upper portion of the church which was covered, another is the uncovered area at the middle and the third one is at the back and lower portion of the church which was recently covered due to the help and donations of devotees. An area may accommodate 200-250 seats per mass, but the crowd covers the whole area every time.  Every part of the church shows its simplicity yet enticing work of arts which are rich in religious expressions.

Organo Gold Coffee Shop 

Food Court 

 Eating Area of the Food Court

For tourists and other people visiting the shrine, they have souvenir shops. If ever you’ve been tired wandering around, there are places where you can put your feet up and satisfy your hungry stomach. Organo Gold, a coffee shop inside, intends to help the scholars of Divine Mercy church by its proceeds. It’s not crowded there and also it’s a Wi-Fi zone useful for people who want to rest and surf online. Beside the coffee shop was the food court, a lot of people eat there because of the different variety of foods to choose from in much cheaper price. There are also vending machines everywhere if ever someone needs a drink. These food and drink stalls help the ongoing beautification of the entire shrine.

Food Stalls at the Back of the Shrine

 Souvenir Religious Items 

We attended the 10:30 to 12 noon mass. It is held at the lower and back portion of the shrine. Around it was the life-sized statues displayed for the Stations of the Cross which is very popular every Holy week. There were a lot of people that day, ignoring the extreme heat of the sun. After hearing the words of God, we passed by the backside where the parking lot was located. Its lunch time then and my tummy’s screaming already then while walking I was like, LOL! WTF? In the narrow pathway laid plenty of food stalls with mouth-watering foodstuffs. There are different dishes, hotdogs, French fries, and what we call tusok-tusok commonly seen on sidewalks. Not only foods are there but also different items like religious necklace and bracelets, dresses for Sto. Ninos, and different wood carvings.

At the end of the day, we all came home with our stomachs filled and so as our spiritual needs. 

Sevillano,Sarah Jane R.
BCR 3-1D

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