A Solemn Visit to the National Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes in N.S. Amoranto

It was sunny afternoon last week, when we visited the Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes located along N.S. Amoranto ( formerly known as Retiro street) corner Kanlaon street.


National Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes

We would often pass along their stretch of street on our way to Muñoz in Quezon City. Sometimes the church and shrine was our reference point when we are going to the Suki Market and Dapitan Arcade.

History and Heritage

The Lourdes Church and Convent was first established by the Franciscan Capuchin friar in 1891.

The devotion to Our Lady of Lourdes slowly but surely spread throughout the Philippines that the Capuchins were forced to build a bigger and more beautiful church which was dedicated on February 3, 1910.

The church used to be along General Luna street within Intramuros in the 19th century until it was destroyed during World War II in 1945.

As posted by the website of the Diocese of Cubao, there was an initiative to establish a parish within Retiro St. in Quezon City in 1941, spearheaded by the Capuchins to the Archbishop of Manila. A decree was issued on March 28, 1942 to establish Sta. Teresita del Niño Jesus Parish; however the church construction was delayed because of World War II. The image of Our Lady of Lourdes was kept at nearby San Agustin church and convent and were miraculously saved.


Our Lady of Lourdes statute located at the left side of the main entrance

The statue of Our Lady of Lourdes then moved from one place to another during the last chapters of the war and was enshrined for quite sometime at the Sta. Teresita Chapel in Mayon Street. Finally, on February 10, 1951, the image was brought back to Sta. Teresita Parish on Retiro St, and later the parish was renamed Our Lady of Lourdes Parish. Fast forward to 1997, in celebration of the Parish’s forty-fifth anniversary, the Our Lady of Lourdes was declared a National Shrine.


timeline of the parish and devotion

The National Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes is located at Kanlaon Street corner N.S. Amoranto Ave. (formerly Retiro St.) Sta. Mesa Heights, Quezon City. It celebrates its feast day every February 11. There are everyday masses and special devotions are also held in the Paris.


main entrance

The church’s present architecture is a modern revival of  neo-romanesque.


church interior


church altar with stained glass windows and painted ceiling


baldoza tile

old baldoza tiles were also part of the mid-century ambiance


main founders of the church , their names were etch in marble for posterity and gratitude

When the first construction of the church and convent was planned in a lot acquired through the donations made by the families represented by Don Salvador Araneta and Doña Natividad Zaragoza Tuason. On August 14, 1941, Fr. Florencio de Lezaun, superior of the Capuchins in the Philippines addressed a letter to the then Archbishop of Manila, Msgr. Michael O’Doherty, asking his consent to build a religious house with a church attached to it, in a 10,500 square meter lot acquired by the Order in Retiro Street. The compound also housed the school and office.


CBCP plaque of dedication


various saints at the side entrance of the shrine


a spiral staircase leading to the church organ


church organ


Dendrobium aphyllum locally called fairy/ dainty/ lesser sanggumay were naturalized on Christmas palm within the pocket garden located within the shrine premises.

Note: All photos are from the author

Sources and References:

Website: Diocese of Cubao

Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines

Except from Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine leaflet and poster

Excerpt from Shrines, Incarnating Christ Today. St. Paul Philippines, 2004.


Quirky and Fancy Kokeshi Dolls

There are a whole lot of quirky and fancy items that one can encounter when in search of collectible items.  A relative who collects kokeshi dolls had bought several item at this Japanese thrift store in Novaliches, Quezon City.


kokeshi dolls for sale at the Japanese surplus/ thrift store

She was lucky that the 6 piece miniature tea cup set made from wood at the forefront display was also added by the thrift store owner as an added bonus to her purchase.

There was also a wooden doll hand painted wearing a Korean wedding hanbok. This type of wooden doll might have been influenced by the Japanese kokeshi doll and sold in souvenir shops in Korea. The thrift shop owner does not have a clue on the origin of the item.


wooden head container and decor

While going  around the store, she was able to spot another wooden decor with an interesting spot to store some items.


wooden container

The wooden lid also doubles as hat and can be opened from the side. Unfortunately, someone had already bought the item.



Popular Noche Buena Dishes Featured by PHLPOST Pasko 2018 Stamps

Popular Noche Buena dishes is now the main feature of stamps issued by Philippine Postal Corporation (PHLPOST). In preparation for the yuletide season se-tenant strip of four stamps for PASKO 2018 featuring the traditional Filipino feast.


se-tenant set of four stamps

A typical Filipino get-together done after attending Misa De Gallo known as “Noche Buena” is now on postage stamps.

Christmas is one of the grandest holidays in the Philippines where Filipinos celebrate the world’s longest Christmas season with Christmas carols heard as early as of September which lasts until the 3rd Sunday of January of the following year.

The stamp features the “Noche Buena”, the Spanish word for “Christmas Eve”. It consists of a traditional dinner with Lechon (roasted suckling pig) as the center piece being observed since 16th century.



first day cover with pasko 2018 sheetlet

Traditionally, Filipino dinner consists of variety of dishes like lechon, pancit, hamon, queso de bola, puto bumbong, bibingka, fruit salad, suman and many more comes at midnight after the family hears the late evening mass called “Misa de Gallo”.


Pasko 2018 first day cover with stamps

Technical Features

PHLPost has printed 50,000 copies of the four (4) designed se-tenant strip of Noche Buena stamp sold for 12 pesos each or Php 48 for the set of 4 stamps. There is also an first day cover. The Christmas stamp was designed by PHLPost in-house graphic designer Mr. Rodine Teodoro.

The stamps and official first day covers are now available at the Philatelic Counter, Central Post Office, Liwasang Bonifacio 1000, Ermita, Manila and area post offices nationwide. For inquiries, please call 527-01-32


Unlimited Samgyupsal King meal

Samgyupsal King is well known for their Korean Barbecue and Unlimited Samgyupsal offering has two branches in Quezon City.  One is located within Le Village Food Park in E. Rodriguez Ave. corner Cordillera Street and another branch at Uno Cinquenta Food Park in 150 Maginhawa street within Quezon City.


The place is near several important places like Mabuhay Rotunda, Cubao, New Manila, Hospitals and about 30 minutes away from University belt.


thinly slice chicken meat and beef

This haven opened their stall within the food park about 7 months ago thru the efforts of father and son tandem.


Sir Willie Yulo Que and Chef Raymond Yuloque

Chef Raymond S. Yuloque is the one who formulated the marination to suit the Filipino palate and makes sure that every customer gets the freshest and quality ingredients.  The quality of the meat, lettuce and side dishes are very affordable.


l-r kimchi, potato marble and pickled raddish and condiments

Side dishes like egg roll, potato marble and pickled radish are well loved by their customers. There is no need to book or wait in long lines just to enjoy this hearty meal.


portable gas range and skewer plate

 For those who are health conscious and want to savor the Korean traditional food. Samgyupsal King is the only restaurant within the area that is all unlimited with their meals, wherein customers will cook freshly the sliced chicken, super tender beefs and pork.


chicken meat

All the ingredients are either sourced out locally and internationally. Condiments and spices are prepared according to international standards. Succulent fresh meat thinly sliced beef, pork and chicken with herbal extracts that are especially prepared for people with discriminating taste.


cooking chicken meat is fast and easy

The chicken meat is tender and well marinated, it had a sweet style marination similar to tocino. This also includes the pork and beef meat which are tender and thinly slice.

Even teenagers and child can cook the barbecue meat with ease. The staffs are also approachable and they help assist customers grill the barbecue.


menu board

The stall also offers different kinds of set menus like chicken, pork and beef bulgogi, salmon grill and unlimited Korean barbecue for just Php 399.00 !! Unlike other Korean barbecue restaurants, They do not have any time limitation on those with big appetite.

Chef Raymond also told us that they can customize the flavors of their barbecue to those who like spicy foods.

The restaurant is also listed under popular restaurant review sites zomato, booky and loloo

There are also a lot of inquiries on whether they are open for franchising or partnership opportunities .

There are also add-on menus for Rice-Php 30.00, Kimchi Php 30.00 among others.

Note: All prices quoted in this blog are subject to increase without prior notification. Please try to visit their FB page for more information and for their in-house promotions.

Policy of Unlimited Meal: Strictly no sharing

Samgyupsal King  Page: https://www.facebook.com/Samgyupsal-King-Unli-Korean-BBQ-360873624413867/

Address:E Rodriguez Sr. Ave., cor. Cordillera
Quezon City, Philippines 1102
Cellphone : 0916 559 8818
Operational Hours Everyday :  4:00 PM – 1:00 AM


In Real Life Invades SM Fairview Christmas Holiday Festival

Thousands of screaming teenagers and fans came in full force to meet and greet the popular In Real Life band group during the launching of the Christmas holiday festival held at the SM Fairview atrium area.


SM Fairview ( Lagro) Hometown Holiday mini-Christmas village

The event kicked off past 5:00 pm with performances from National University’s choir, acrobatic stunts, children group, Christmas parade debacle, gingerbread dance and opening of the Christmas theme village.


acrobatic stunts left spectators and guests at awe


Special guests included the family of John Prats and representatives from SM Fairview (Lagro) and SM management.


L-R Ms. Nicole Cordovez ( program emcee), Mr. John Prats together Ms. Isabel Oli and daughter


National University chorale

Among the highlights of the annual Christmas holiday festival was the group photo ( meet and greet ) and the special performance of the boy group during the Christmas hometown holiday launching.


a fan pose for a souvenir photo opportunity 


special performance of the group

In Real Life band is composed of Brady Tutton, Chance Perez, Drew Ramos, Sergio Calderon, and Michael Conor.

The local organizers are planning for more guest appearances and concert next year.




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