Monday, July 24, 2006

Tayo na sa Antipolo

We went to Antipolo Church yesterday to attend mass and to pray for the safe trip of my nephew and brother-in-law to Vietnam where my nephew will participate in the 6th World Junior Taekwondo Championships. It has been a yearly ritual for our family to go to Antipolo Church during my birthday (May 1, or the nearest weekend possible depending on our schedule) and whenever a member of the family has to go on a long trip. This is due to the fact that the patron saint of Antipolo Church is the “Nuestra Señora dela Paz y Buenviaje” or “Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage.”

According to various historians, the Virgin Mary of Antipolo was brought to the Philippines on March 25, 1526 by Don Juan Niño de Tabora (who became the Governor-General) from Mexico. On this trip, Governor Tabora brought along the brown image of our Blessed Virgin Mother. The Brown Virgin would eventually accompany Spanish traders during the 16th and 17th century, and it was believed that the Brown Virgin protected the traders from the ravages of storms and pirates, hence its name “La Virgen dela Paz y Buenviaje.”

Unfortunately, it was raining yesterday so here is the most decent pic I could take of the church from the outside.
Another pic of the inside of the church from where I was sitting.
The Virgin of Antipolo sits atop a glass case high above the altar. After hearing mass, churchgoers would flock to the back of the church where they would line up to go to the second floor and have the opportunity to touch the miraculous dress of the Virgin Mary and pray. A museum can also be found on the same floor.

After the mass, we went straight to the building beside the church housing the stalls of the vendors where Antipolo’s famous suman and kasoy (cashew) are being sold. Aside from suman and kasoy they also sell various goodies enough to satisfy the cravings of anyone who has a sweet tooth.

My sister wondered how many fruits it took to produce this many cashews. Must have been lots and lots of fruits.

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