Church On Time: The San Beda Chapel

     Churches are one, if not the best documentation of the history of architecture. They are like the big giant story books of mankind.

The church facade along Mendiola St. in San Miguel, Manila.
     Here in the Philippines we are not want of churches being a predominantly Roman Catholic country. Some of the world's most beautiful churches I believe are right here. Having grown up in Santa Mesa, Manila, our choices for churches on Sundays were the retro Holy Redeemer Parish in Brixton Hills, Mt Carmel in New Manila and the San Beda Chapel. My easy favorite then was the San Beda Chapel. Masses there were always so solemn. The people silently busy communing with their God. After church scene was equally serene except for a lone ice-cream cart, maybe a corn vendor and an old man selling lottery tickets. (or sweepstakes)

Frescoes, vaulted and a half dome.

     Hearing mass there after such a long time brought back a lot of memories. I remember, as a teen- ager trying to convince my parents to hear the 10am mass every Sunday......because there was a cute guy who hears mass at 10am. Teehee! I remember chasing after my then baby cousins Ana and Carla down the nave. I have not forgotten and still appreciate how well the Abbots prepared and said their homilies.

      The beauty of the San Beda Chapel still takes my breath away, all of its Neo-Gothic splendor. I am confident the Benedictines will preserve this wonderful edifice. This church is truly a gem.

      A lot has changed around it like a KFC fast food resto occupies a corner of the block where the church and school sits but inside the same serene almost mysterious charm still awaits anyone who ventures to come in, fold their hands together and pray.

No comments: