Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Easter!

“Christ is risen; Christ is truly risen.”

and it's meat time too! :D

Saturday, April 03, 2010

DIY Holy Week 2010: Black Saturday

nothing much really...fed on corned tuna fried rice with mushrooms, baguio beans, and egg...slept...sufed the net...watched a bit of Brothers and Sisters on Studio 23 and Agua Bendita on Channel 2...ate instant noodles for dinner...and watched American Beauty.

back in the day, i remember how we siblings would sneak out of the house one by one once my mom leaves the house for her church service only to find ourselves meeting up again in our usual hang out area in the city. :p


Black Saturday or Holy Saturday is actually the last day of Lent. this is when we start waiting for Christ's resurrection which is on Easter Sunday. as we wait in anticipation for that wondrous event it is but fitting that we thank Him for not having left us even in our darkest moments.

Thank You for the pains You took
in order to enter the dungeons of our lives.

Thank You for entering
the innermost, darkest chambers
of our dungeons.

Thanks to Your loving self-sacrifice,
now I know that no distance is too great,
no dungeon too dark,
and no sin is too great
for Your love and light.

Help me
to love You back as You deserve.


DIY Holy Week 2010: Good Friday

Good Friday is generally the time for fasting and abstinence. I have somehow succeeded in abstaining from eating meat the past Fridays this Lent except for that one time when i had a meeting with my staff and not one of them observes abstinence anyway.

I have noticed though that the abstinence rule has kinda changed even at home. i remember us not having any meat for the entire week then starting Monday up to Saturday. imagine how much we'd be craving for meat come Easter Sunday, lechon anyone??? these days though, my mom says we only need to abstain on the Paschal Triduum or Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Black Saturday. it's not really a mandatory thing. i just don't see anything wrong in sacrificing a little bit, besides it can be healthy too.

Good Friday is also that day commemorating Jesus Christ's crucifixion and death in order to save us from sins. quite mushy for kids nowadays but whenever you think hard about it you're supposed to feel extra special.

Faith is indeed a gift one has to receive (Robert Langdon, Angels and Demons). It's either you have it or you don't. or there will be times when you do question or even get angry. My faith has always been a more personal, more unorthodox one. it's like having a father, a brother, a confidante all in one. it's like having an enemy too. i'm not one who religiously follows rituals though i have been finding myself going back to church and attending mass each Sunday. and praying the rosary whenever i can. but there are more times when i would choose not to listen to him like some bratty kid. i guess this is the beauty of the Catholic faith really, we get to design our own faith, how we live our life, how we practice our faith. the basic tenet would really be to do what is basically and intrinsically good as a human being above all else. I don't know, maybe the elders and the more religious ones would frown at this practice. but for now i am at peace. i am loving the thought of being loved and basking in His glory.

i failed to attend church services today and have found myself listening to Jars of Clay almost the entire day...and here is my most favorite:

I look beyond the empty cross
forgetting what my life has cost
and wipe away the crimson stains
and dull the nails that still remain
More and more I need you now,
I owe you more each passing hour
the battle between grace and pride
I gave up not so long ago
So steal my heart and take the pain
and wash the feet and cleanse my pride
take the selfish, take the weak,
and all the things I cannot hide
take the beauty, take my tears
the sin-soaked heart and make it yours
take my world all apart

this song never fails to rip my heart apart. it's just so meaningful and beautiful i couldn't help but cry or stop whatever it is i am doing and drink up each word, each melody of this song.

Friday, April 02, 2010

DIY Holy Week 2010

Holy week and most special events make me miss my family more. I couldn't help but feel nostalgic at what we do together during those special times. I miss it when my mom would forever remind us to go to church, join the processions or at least light a candle and say our prayers as she serves us non-meat dish every meal. I long for her malagkit and ginataan dishes too which we would enjoy even if were supposed to fasting and abstaining from too much food.

this year I am not home for this event though. The last time that i didn't go home for the holy week i found myself shocked and bewildered in the island of Puerto Gay-lera. we all know what Galera is like during the holy week, ayt?! which is exactly why i chose to just stay home and try to recall our usual activities back home and at least have my own peace and quiet for the solemn observance for this year.

Holy Thursday's Visita Iglesia

Holy Thursday however was spent for Visita Iglesia. this is my first Visita Iglesia ever and i'm glad i have my friends i could join for this activity. Visita Iglesia or church visit is a Catholic tradition wherein 7 churches are being visited as we recall and reflect on the on the sufferings of Jesus Christ leading to his crucifixion. we initially listed down 11 churches around Quezon City and Manila areas though we actually made to just 8.

after having late lunches for some of us at Mc Donald's Quezon Ave., we hopped on a cab to take us to our first church which is at Sto. Domingo Church.

First Church: Sto. Domingo

Sto. Domingo also known as "Our Lady of the Rosary" or "Our Lady of La Naval" is built by the Dominicans in the 1600s. The main altar has a mosaic of St. Dominic designed by Architect Jose Zaragoza. Galo Ocampo designed the stained glass windows.

we bought our Stations of the Cross guide at the peddler in front of the church and agreed on 2 stations per church. From St. Domingo we then rode a jeepney to take us to the University of Sto. Tomas campus where the Santisimo Rosario Parish Church is.

Second Church: UST

here we prayed and reflected on the 3rd and 4th stations of the cross.

Third Church: San Sebastian

from UST, we took another jeepney to San Sebastian. San Sebastian church also known as the Basilica Minore de San Sebastian is the only all-steel church in Asia. Its interiors feature a Gothic architecture style with its high spires and columns.

from San Sebastian we hailed a tricycle to take us to our fourth stop which is Quiapo Church.

Fourth Church: Quiapo

Quiapo church is officially known as the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene. every 9th of January, thousands of devotees of the Black Nazarene would flock here for their yearly procession.

from this church we walked though Plaza Lacson and found Sta. Cruz church which is actually built by the Jesuits in the 1600s. this church is also home to Our Lady of Pilar.

Fifth Church: Sta. Cruz

farther down the street passing through Chinatown, we made our way towards Binondo to our 6th stop which is the Binondo church.

it was an added delight passing by the Fire Brigaide volunteers offering us free mochi and water from Eng Bee Tin.

we finally reached that end of the road where the Binondo church is.

Sixth Church: Binondo

Binondo is predominantly populated by Chinese settlers and used to be the business and finance district before Makati. Binondo church is officially known as Minor Basilica of St. Lorenzo Ruiz for this is where San Lorenzo Ruiz was born along with Mother Ignacia del Ispiritu Santo, founder of the Congregation of the Religious of the Virgin Mary.

from Binondo we rode a tricycle to take to Intramuros which has our final two stops.

Seventh Church: Manila Cathedral

the Manila Cathedral is also known as the Minor Basilica of the Immaculate Conception and is the official seat of the Archbishop of Manila.

the late President Corazon C. Aquino had her wake and burial mass in this cathedral making her the first woman to permitted to lie in state here.

we finished up to the fourteenth station here before we headed to our final stop which is the San Agustin also in Intramuros since it was already getting too crowded.

Eighth Church: San Agustin

San Agustin Church is actually a UNESCO World Heritage Site as one of the Baroque Churches of the Philippines with its ornate carvings on the wooden doors.

its ceilings and walls have this trompe l'oeil or "trick of the eye" art technique creating an optical illusion in which objects appear as three-dimensional.

We finished at around 8pm, tired, hungry yet feeling blissed-out and sated. we then proceeded to Dampa in Macapagal for a much anticipated seafood feast. Kudos to us all.