Posts Tagged ‘Church of the Gesu’
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Nearly a year ago, the ALMS was founded to have the Traditional Latin Mass said in Ateneo de Manila University. So far, we have not succeeded. Our main problem is we cannot find a suitable chapel. I think the Church of the Gesu is good enough for TLM. The problem may be the cost: it is about P 3500 per mass. If this cost is the only thing that keeps us from having a TLM in Ateneo, then I propose the following solution:
I shall pay the P 3500.
We can have one Sunday mass per month. The mass collections can go to the presiding priest. Fifty (50) persons giving P 20 each is already P 1000. If we can have an attendance of 300 persons, the mass collection would be enough to pay for both the priest and the rental of the Church of the Gesu.
I can only give financial support, but this is not enough:
- We need somebody who can be the overall coordinator of ALMS, preferably a student, because we wish the ALMS to be an Ateneo student organization recognized by Ateneo de Manila University. I already have my hands full as undergraduate committee head of the Physics Department and SERC Subcenter coordinator of the Manila Observatory.
- We need volunteers for the choir. Mr. Nikko Vitug, faculty of the English Department, is already offering his services as choir master. Mr. Vitug has a syllabus ready for the Gregorian chant training.
- We need volunteers for the sacristan. Dennis Maturan, Founding Chairman of Ecclesia Dei Society of St. Joseph (EDSSJ), is already offering the services of his group for sacristan training. We only need but ask them. EDSSJ is based in Parish of Our Lord of Divine Mercy in Sikatuna, Quezon City. I could not be around during Saturdays because I have a offshore class in Angeles University, Pampanga for our M.S. Physics Program. We need a sacristan coordinator for Ateneo.
- We need volunteers who will make sure that the altar vessels and linens are available, and that the sacristans and priests have their vestments. Frank Chow’s TLM community in Canada can help us procure the vestments and linens which we can buy from the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate in Novaliches.
- We need volunteers for the promotions. Fr. Lester Maramara, SJ, the Director of the Ateneo College Campus Ministry Office, has given us permission to post TLM announcements in Bulletin Board of the College Chapel.
- We need to find a priest who can say TLM for us. Fr. Tim Ofrasio SJ is now assigned in a parish in Novaliches.
- We need to schedule our first general assembly, preferably mid January. We need to have our first TLM at the Church of the Gesu by February. We need to recruit more students and faculty to join the yahoo group.
I would appreciate your thoughts on these matters. I hope and pray that we can now finally move forward.
Dr. Quirino Sugon Jr.
Ateneo Latin Mass Society
The Ateneo community is invited to the
NOVENA MASSES IN HONOR OF THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS.
Masses will be offered at the
Chapel of the Sacred Heart of Jesus,
Church of the Gesu,
from June 2 to June 10, 2010,
at 6:00 in the evening.
“Through Thy Wounded Heart, dearest Lord,
pierce my heart so deeply with the dart of Thy love
that it may no longer be able to contain earthly things
but may be governed by the action of Thy Divinity alone.”
(St. Gertrude the Great)
Gesu Liturgical Committee
The Philippine Province of the Society of Jesus
on the occasion of the Year for Priests
invites you to the
Ordination to the Presbyterate of
Rev. Cristopher A. Fajardo, SJ
Rev. Joseph Y. Haw, Jr., SJ
Rev. Gilbert Emmanuel P. Levosada, SJ
Rev. Marlito G. Ocon, SJ
Rev. Alberto B. Paurom, SJ
Rev. Roy Cenon M. Ragas, SJ
Rev. Karel S. San Juan, SJ
17 April 2010, Saturday, 8:30 a.m.
Church of the Gesù, Ateneo de Manila University
Loyola Heights, Quezon City
Most Reverend Edward Joseph Adams
Titular Archbishop of Scala
Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines
source: Philippine Jesuits
Ash Wednesday Homily of Fr. Joey Cruz, S.J. at the Church of the Gesu
Do you or someone you know have among your things denims that have small tears in them perhaps at the knee signifying cool casualness?
During the time of Jesus, those who wanted to manifest sorrow for their sin tore their clothes or covered their bodies with ash.
We will soon approach the sanctuary to have ash marked on our forehead, with the words said: “Remember you are dust and unto dust you will return.”
The ash marking will be slight and merely suggestive of bodies being covered with ash a la taong grasa, but expect nonetheless our hearts awakened anew and stoked into flame in love of God.
Ash on our forehead makes us own up to our humanity and to our ability to disfigure ourselves.
Consider the lies we make, the little and big thievery we engage in, the disconnect that exists between what we do and the plight of the many.
Consider the habit of being preoccupied with self, the excesses we commit due to a sense of emptiness, the addictions that we are so adept at denying even to ourselves.
Consider the violence at home in word and deed and how we reserve our choicest arsenal of pain for members of the household.
Ash — of little weight, blown away, insignificant — is an image of human lives fragile, broken, drifting in the wind, of no obvious value, but always and without fail infused with God’s life, fallen yes but redeemed, hurting perhaps but summoned always to draw strength from God’s life-giving love.
The real revelation then is that ash though we are, we are brought to life and sustained by God’s life-giving love; that insignificant though we may seem, we carry God’s life within us. We are called to great things. We are God’s daughters and sons.
Ash Wednesday is about our humanity; but more importantly still, it is about God’s magnanimity. It speaks about God seeking us, about Him pursuing us even when we drift away, about Him not giving up on us.
The earthquake in Haiti might remind us of another that took place in Armenia some years ago.
In the muddled chaos, a distressed father ran through the winding streets leading to the school where his son had gone earlier that morning. The man could not stop thinking about the promise he gave his son many times. “No matter what happens, Armand,” he would say, “I’ll always be there for you.” But where the school had once stood, nothing remained except for a large heap of debris. With bare hands, he started digging, pulling up brick and wood where his son’s classroom had been. A bystander, in an effort at solidarity, said: “You can stop now, all the children must be dead.” But the man, with nothing but his son in mind, kept digging and digging, for hours and hours. 12 hours went by….. 18 hours….. 24 hours….. 36 hours….. and finally into the 38th hour he heard a muffled groan from under a piece of wallboard. Pulling it back, he called out, “Armand!” and from the darkness came a slight, shaking voice, “Papa?” 14 of the 33 students survived. Young Armand turned to his friends and said, “See, I told you my father will not forget us.”
The ash on our forehead marks us as God?s daughters and sons whom he loves and will never abandon.
With the words then, “you are dust,” we are told everything we are: nothingness filled with eternity; death teaming with life; dust invigorated with God’s life for always.(Rahner)
At this mass, even as we acknowledge who we are, let us declare whose we are.
Blessings on you all this Lent.
Monk’s Hobbit: When I heard the story of the boy and his father, I tried not to cry.
I. A Mysterious E-mail
I received an email from a certain fjch1 with a title “Best Wishes”. I thought it was a spam. But I opened it anyway. And I read:
I’m an Ateneo alumnus (BS Bio 1976) who lives in Vancouver, British
Columbia. My wife and I attend Holy Family Parish, a Traditional Mass
parish in the care of the FSSP, and I am also on the board of the
Vancouver Traditional Mass Society. We come to Manila every December and
I’m excited to learn about your efforts to bring the Traditional Mass to
the Ateneo campus. It looks like you may already have found your stable
group, if the number of members of this Yahoo Group is any indication.
I would be interested in meeting you sometime (I’ve been following your
blog for a number of months). What will your schedule be like during the
Christmas holidays? We’ll be leaving for Vancouver on January 11, so I
could also look you up on campus when classes resume in the new year.
Yesterday he gave me his phone number and I gave him mine.
II. Where Have All the Jesuits Gone?
Today, at 7:30 a.m. he texted me that he dropped off something at the Jesuit Residence. He wondered whether I am already in the office. I told him that I will be in school in an hour. I was still riding the jeepney to Guadalupe then. I thought he already left. But at about 8:30 a.m. he texted me that he is touring around grade school. He wondered if I am nearby. I informed him that I am already on in Katipunan. I shall be at the Observatory in 5 minutes.
When I arrived at the Observatory, I met Frank at the entrance door of the Observatory. We shook hands. He told me that he went to the Ateneo Grade School to visit the Chapel of the Holy Angels where he once served. He said that there was once an altar attached to the wall there aside from the new altar. The Tabernacle is still at the center, but the old altar is gone.
We went to the third floor of the Observatory to see the chapel. The third floor used to be the Residence Hall of the Manila Observatory’s Jesuit scientists. But the Jesuits are gone and the community there was dissolved. The remaining Jesuits at the Observatory is 86-year old Fr. Sergio Su, S.J. who studies the focal mechanism of earthquakes, and the 70(?)-year old Fr. David Skelsky, S.J., who made possible the transfer of many Standards equipments from the U.S. He is currently assembing and fixing them. But Fr. Skelsky is only on a loan; he will be back to the U.S. soon.
At the end of the stairs, a lattice of woodbeams barred our way. Who locked this? There is no knob. Frank suggested to look for a latch or something on the opposite side. I can find none. Hmmm… I moved the woodbeams to the side. It moved. Welcome to the mines of Moriah!
We entered the chapel and knelt. The chapel was bare. There are no pews yet. A small table served as the altar table. Behind it is a chair. On the side is the tabernacle. It was veiled.
We entered the sacristy door beside the altar. On the left are three small rooms for private masses that can accommodate only one priest and one server. Each room has an altar pushed to the wall. At the back is a small cabinet as big as two shoe boxes. The cabinet contains some small candles and others. Pasted on the cabinet door are the Latin prayers for each vestment. Beside the small cabinet is a large cabinet. It contains chasubles in different colors. But they are old and dusty. Frank took some pictures.
“It is sad that this place is dilapidated,” said Frank.
I accompanied Franck to the last room. On this room was stacked the kneelers. Each kneeler can accommodate only one priest. The kneelers are stacked neatly now, unlike before when my friend and I saw them. A week before she entered the convent, we cleaned these kneelers. We removed the dusts with a Good Morning towel soaked in soap. We cleaned each kneeler thrice. It was her first time to handwash towelettes, so I laughed when saw her did it. “What are you doing?” I asked her. And I gave her a lecture in Laundry Washing 101. I pity her sweet little hands.
III. A Frank Conversation
Frank and I left the sacristy and went back to the chapel. He took a picture of the main altar. Seen through the tall windows on the left are the Observatory’s sprawling green fields. There is the white solar building that jutted out like a rock of marble. I pointed to the Grade School buildings beyond it, covered from view by a row of mango trees. I pointed to my brick building towards the east, beside the big black sphere. A thin mist shines in the morning sun.
Frank told me that in their parish in Vancouver, they have a regular Traditional Latin Mass every Sunday. For seven years, they shared the church with a parish. They petitioned the bishop to have their own personal parish. Nothing happened until 2007, when a sympathetic auxilliary bishop came and Summorum Pontificum came out. The Bishop found a church for them. It was the parish church of a German community. But the community dwindled. They cannot anymore support the maintenance of their parish church. So their parish was fused with the other parish, and the German church was given to the TLM community.
Today, this community has two FSSP priests: during Sundays, one priest says the mass while other hears confessions. On special feast days, two FSSP seminarians goes to the parish and a high mass is celebrated. Frank hopes that we can have something similar at the Ateneo de Manila University. I agreed.
I told Frank that the new Church of the Gesu here at the Ateneo could not have masses every Sunday; it has only two Sunday masses per month. The reason for this is that there are about three churches along Katipunan Avenue: Monasterio de Sta. Clara, Our Lady of Pentecost Church, and Our Lady della Strada Church. If the Jesuits offer two more Sunday masses at the Church of the Gesu, these other churches would lose financially. On the other hand, if we offer a TLM every Sunday, I think nobody will protest. We are such a tiny group.
“Does the Director of the Manila Observatory approve the use of the chapel for the TLM?” asked Frank.
I told Frank that Mrs. Antonia Loyzaga is supportive the TLM initiative. She has heard Latin masses in her youth. She wants the chapel renovated to make it a real chapel with pews. That is why she asked me lead the design for the chapel. I submitted to her a simple design that I posted in the Ateneo Latin Mass Society Yahoo group (It is also available in my Padre Faura’s notebook blog in pdf). My next problem is to make the costing. Her problem is to find the funds for the renovation. She said that the chapel, because it is a Jesuit chapel like other chapels in Ateneo de Manila University, should have its own budget from the Jesuit community.
“But the Jesuits are having financial problems,” said Frank. “They have this property in Sta. Ana which they are thinking of selling. But they may find it difficult to do so, because the property is being considered as a historical landmark” (see Inquirer article here).
I told Frank that I envision that the TLM mass collection will go to the purchase of vestments for priests, altar servers, and vessels. I told him about the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate. They make these vestments. I saw some of their chasubles–they are exquisite. The cost is about PhP 5,000 per set, because the chasubles must match in design with the coverings for the vessels, for example. I am not sure if one set means one liturgical color, and there are are about five colors–green, white, red, black, violet.
Frank said that if it is only P 5,000 per set, that is only about a $ 100, which is not big for those in Vancouver. There are also Filipinos there who may like to help, even if they cannot be here at the Ateneo. Frank ask me to canvass this soon and inform him of the amount.
We thanked each other and left the chapel.
When we closed the chapel door, we read a sign: Chapel of St. Joseph.
“Joseph is my middle name,” said Frank.
This explains the riddle: fjch1 means Frank Joseph Chow… I don’t know what h1 means. I did not anymore ask him.
Monk’s Hobbit Notes: Frank sent me the pictures of the Manila Observatory chapel. You can find them here.
The Ateneo Dollhouse: an enclave of homosexuals, lesbians, and straights in Ateneo de Manila University
Today I read a copy of the Guidon, the official student publication of the Ateneo de Manila University. I found an article there entitled, “New Queen Mother aims for buzz, style, and substance.” Here are some excerpts:
“ANG PAGGAWA ng eksena (creating a buzz)” is newly elected Queen Mother Patch Buenaventura’s goal for the Dollhouse. Initially comprised of homosexuals, the Dollhouse has become a flamboyant mix of lesbians, homosexuals, and straight males and females. Their popular hangout, which Buenaventura dubs the “Dollhouse Arena,” is the group of benches beside the Rizal Mini Theater, across Kostka Hall. The Dollhouse held their annual Miting de Avance and elections on August 7….
This year, in line with the Barbie doll’s 50th anniversary, the Dolhouse celebrated with a Barbie theme. Candidates and Dollhousers wore bright colors and a lot of hot pink. They also portrayed different types of Barbie such as Office Rocker Barbie, Ballerina Barbie, and Industrial Barbie….
My main purpose is to make dollhouse more popular–na gumawa ng eksena (to create a buzz),” said Buenaventura. “I [want] to use my being an attention whore to something more substantive, to the glory of the Dollhouse.” (Guidon Aug 2009, p. 3)….
For [FBuddy] Buenviaje, this “noise” creates awareness for the gay community. “It’s a shout out that there are really gays in the world and close-minded people should get used to it.”….
Gays and lesbians, said Buenaventura, have always been subject to prejudice and discrimination. “This way, when we send them out, they’re strong, they could speak up and defend themselves.” He added that Dollhouse makes the memberes more assertive. “They have an emotional investment here.”
I think Ateneo de Manila is trying to catch up with Georgetown University, another Jesuit University, who already has a Gay Campus Centre with a Homosexual Director. The Dollhouse is not still an official center in the Ateneo, but they have claimed a patch of land in Ateneo to be their own and the Administration is not minding them.
But the Gay lobby in Ateneo is making its presence felt in the Ateneo. You see this in the books published in the Ateneo de Manila University Press, such as Global Divas: Filipino Gay Men in Diaspora (Philippine Edition). The English and Filipino classes are also permeated with gay and lesbian themes. This is not surprising, since Danton Remoto, an English professor in Ateneo, is the chairman of Ladlad, the national organization of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Filipinos. He is running for Senator of the Republic of the Philippines this 2010 elections.
The Dead Jesuits Society: Sodality, Rosary, and Angelus
The dead Jesuits must be turning in their graves–or rather, they look down from the heavens and gaze with sadness at what Ateneo de Manila had become. Ateneo de Manila, the foremost Jesuit University in the Philippines, was once the bastion of Catholic Faith before the World War II. It is said that at that time no one can run as the school’s student council president unless he is a member of the Sodality of Our Lady. But the devotion to our Lady is dying at the Ateneo. The rosary is now rarely said here: in all my years here in the Ateneo, I can count with my fingers the masses that I have seen that started with a rosary.
When was the last time that a Jesuit priest in Ateneo teaches what the Catechism teaches about homosexuality?
Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.” they are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not prodceed from a genuine affective and sexual complemetarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.
The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. They do not choose their homosexual condition; for most of them it is a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.
Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinteresed friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection. (Catechism of the Catholic Church, Art. 2357-2359)
I once brought up years ago in the School Forum the removal of the Angelus at 12 nn and 6 pm. Fr. Danny Huang, S.J., who was the Jesuit provincial at that time, asked who removed it. Someone said it was a Jesuit who asked it to be removed. Now, I can hear the the bells of the Church of the Gesu for the Angelus. But the bells are tiny: they sing beautiful music but they cannot command silence. And if you are standing in the college area amidst the noise of the students, you won’t hear the bells. Maybe it is time to ring the heritage bells from the Old Ateneo de Manila Campus in Padre Faura for the Angelus. It is time to ring the bells.
A Survey of the Chapel
At the third floor of the Manila Observatory is a chapel, located near the stairs. From the outside, all you see is a series of vertical planks designed in such a way that you won’t see what is inside directly. The air flows past these the spaces between the planks and the screen wall near the ceiling.
There are two doors, left and right. If you open one of the doors, the first thing that you will see is a series of tall windows allowing a good view of the Observatory’s green fields, which stretches out to the Ionosphere building towards the East, the Solar Building on the South West, and the Grade school building beyond it. And then you see the heavens. “Our Father, who art in heaven…”
But the chapel is empty. There are no pews. But this is where we hold our First Friday masses. Instead of pews we use chairs, ideal for office use, but not for a chapel. We sit, we stand, but we never kneel, even during consecration. Sitting masses is becoming very common here at the Ateneo de Manila University. I’ve attended one in the Jesuit Infirmary. And I saw another one in the Theology Department, even though it is not a chapel. As long as there is a table to serve as the altar and people have chairs to sit down, we can have a mass.
I sat on one of the three white monoblock chairs. My friend brought it there, because she loves to stay there to read her Liturgy of the Hours. Actually, I bought the book for myself a year ago to teach myself how to pray like medieval monks, but after reading for a week, I get lost. When she saw my book, she asked if she can have it; so I gave it to her.
I gazed at the altar wall. On the left side is the Tabernacle. The front face is plated with gold (probably brass). The other faces are painted gray-green. A red lamp is burning beside it, which means that Jesus is there. Mrs. Tony Gonzaga, the Director of the Manila Observatory, told me that the Father Provincial, Fr. Jose Cecilio “Jojo” Magadia, S.J., was surprised that we keep consecrated hosts there.
Above the tabernacle is a white bas relief of Mary carrying the Infant Jesus, probably made of resin. The bas relief of St. Joseph the Worker is on the right corner.
At the center of the altar wall is a crucifix. I am glad that it was a traditional sculpture and not that of the mummified Christ I saw at the Church of Our Lady of Pentecost along Katipunan Avenue. Jesus Christ hangs on the cross, eyes downcast. I like this better than the highly stylized, clean-shaven Christ at the altar of the Church of the Gesu.
The altar is simply a four-legged table with mantle. I don’t think there is a relic embedded on the table. Relics of saints are usually placed in little boxes and embedded on church altars. The priest kisses this relic before saying the Holy Mass. In the olden days, when a church is about to be destroyed, one of the first things the priest will get is the relic on the altar (and the blessed hosts, of course, lest they be trampled underfoot by the enemies of the church).
Mrs. Loyzaga gave me a task. She wants have the chapel renovated to make it as a permanent chapel of the Manila Observatory. My job is to make suggestions on what needs to be done.
I measured the chapel area: it is 15.5 ft x 27 ft. The raised altar area is 8 ft x 7 ft. Thus the space for the pews is only about 15.5 ft x 20 ft, which is 310 sq. ft. If the aisle is about 5 ft x 20 ft or 80 sq. ft, then the remaining floor area for benches is 230 sq. ft. If each person requires a 1.5 ft x 3 ft space or 4.5 sq. ft, then the number of persons that can fit in a 230 sq. ft area is about 50.
A Survey of the Sacristy
On the right side of the altar wall is a door. I opened it. There are two cabinets attached to the right wall. The first cabinet contains sacred vessels, linens, and albs–many of them are starched, though spotted with little yellow marks. I guess it has been a long time since these were used. Maybe decades ago. I saw about twenty Mompo wine bottles. They have to be thrown away.
The second cabinet contains chasubles. They are new and well kept. It is common for priests to just wear the chasuble on top of their ordinary clothes, then don the stole. I know Fr. Tim Ofrasio, S.J. will not be content at this. Fr. Tim is a professor in liturgy at the Loyola House of Studies. He was invited to say mass there several times, but he refused: he will only agree provided he is completely vested. I saw him took off his priestly clothes weeks ago when he said a Traditional Latin Mass in Sikatuna in the Feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola: he was wrapped in layers of sheets and tied with cords before he donned his chasuble. Fr. Ofrasio, S.J. celebrates the Traditional Latin Mass everyday in his private chapel in LHS. Fr. Tim asked me to form a stable group for TLM so that he can celebrate it publicly in Ateneo. So far, I have only blogged about it. But I shall form this group soon.
There are three little rooms on the right side, each of them a third of the size of the chapel. These are probably dressing area for priests. I think a a priest can say his mass private mass there, in the days when the priest faces the altar. If I am not mistaken, all priests are required to say mass everyday. A recent option is to concelebrate. In large masses at the Church of the Gesu, it is common to see ten priest concelebrants.
There is another little room straight ahead. To my dismay, all the kneelers are stacked there. Each kneeler, which can accomodate only one person, is attached to a stand where a priest can put his breviary or rest his elbows as he prays in front of the Blessed Sacrament. I once saw Pope John Paul II praying in a similar kneeler. I wiped the dust from one of the kneelers with my bare palm. It turned black.
I looked around and saw a Saint Andrew Bible missal. which was published in 1962. So this must still be the missal of Pope John XXIII, the one used in the present Traditional Latin masses. I did not take it at first, because it looked all English to me. But my friend took it later and showed to me the Order of the Mass in Latin. And I said, “Ah” and “Oh”. She had bought her Baronius missal last week in Our Lady of Victories Church. That was P 2,000. Since I do not have money, I shall content myself with St. Andrew’s. I don’t think anybody else in the Observatory will use it. The Manila Observatory once gave away lots of its books to have more room for research. So I shall consider this missal as part of this give away. I shall bring this missal every mass, even in the present Novus Ordo Masses (Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite). The text of the 1962 Roman Rite (extraordinary form) is very conducive to full and active participation in the mass, by helping me meditate on the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ. In this rite, the priest becomes filled with holy fear in approaching the altar to offer the Most Holy Trinity the most perfect Sacrifice of Christ in Calvary. Fr. Roque Ferriols, S.J. may describe this as Mysterium Tremendum and Mysterium Fascinosum. Unbelievable. It is only now I truly learnt what the mass is.