All Gender Comfort Rooms within Far Eastern University Campus

An all gender comfort room tour was part of the highlight of the Balik FEU and UE campus tour last August 24 when participants were allowed to see the comfort rooms inside the university premises.

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This is said to be the first university within University-Belt zone to have an all gender comfort room.

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Cross Dressing and All Gender Comfort Room

Since August 2016, the private non- sectarian university has relaxed its uniform rules to allow cross-dressing on campus.

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We were told that the all gender comfort rooms were located in 9 areas within the campus. This became some sort of curiosity among the participants.

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all gender comfort room located at the Science Building -3rd floor

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guidelines

Here are the following areas with all gender comfort room

1.) Accounts Business and Finance (ARB )- 3rd floor

2.) Admissions Office – 2nd floor

3.) Alfredo Reyes Hall (ARH)-3rd floor

4.) Architecture and Fine Arts Building ( ABF) – 2nd floor

5.) Arts Building  ( AB) -2nd floor

6.) Education Building ( AB )- 4th floor

7.) Nursing Building (NB)- 3rd floor

8.) Nicanor Reyes Hall ( NRH) – 2nd floor

9.) Science Building ( SB ) – 3rd floor

The poster indicate that it was installed on March 20, 2019 and posted at the comfort rooms.

Far Eastern University is now amongst the ranks of universities that have been putting extra effort to making their campus more friendly for LGBTQ+ groups but also those with students and people with disabilities like Ateneo de Manila, University of the Philippines.

It is good that the university management and the student council had worked hand in hand in this project.

9 Fun Facts about Our Lady of Fatima Chapel inside Far Eastern University

Our Lady of Fatima chapel or FEU chapel is located inside the Far Eastern University campus in Manila.

group photo of FEU campus tour by Professor Dennis Maturan last July 6, 2019

It has long been the source of spiritual strength of the academic community since this was blessed and inaugurated in 1957. It is under the titular patronage of Our Lady of Fatima. The chapel houses priceless religious work of art beautifully crafted by some of the country’s national artists and world re-known architect. the chapel is also known for UAAP championship celebration.

religious statues

National artist for literature Nick Joaquin’s memorabilia is also exhibit at the FEU library.

9 Fun Facts about Our Lady of Fatima chapel

9.) Old Site of ROTC Armory  – It was the site of old ROTC armory. It was a project of FEU Student Catholic Action during the incumbency of Mr. Herminio A. Astorga ( 1954-1955) and later on his successor Ms. Amelita Tanseco ( 1955-56) and Mr. Ernesto Rivera ( 1956-57).

Architect Felipe M. Mendoza ( FEU archives)

8.) Architect Felipe M. Mendoza– (May 26, 1917 – April 28, 2000) is a renown Filipino architect, urban planner, writer who partnered with Mr. Gabino de Leon and Mr. Homero Ingles in his early years as architect. Then he established his own architectural firm in 1951.

He designed the chapel in 1955 and two other FEU buildings . It took almost two years before the chapel was completed. Among his notable works also included Batasang Pambansa, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Development Academy of the Philippines, Philippine Veterans Bank, Assumption College , Antipolo, Sandigan Bayan building among others.

7.) International style architecture – This is a type of post modern architectural style which started in 1920’s to 1930’s which is related to post modern architecture. The architectural style flourish after the world war 1 in Netherlands, Germany, France, Sweden and eventually spread in many parts of Europe and United States.  In the Philippines, This style trended in the mid-1950’s up to late 1960’s.

The style is characterized by an emphasis on volume over mass, the use of lightweight, mass-produced, industrial materials, rejection of all ornament and color, repetitive modular forms.

FEU chapel marker

6.) First Lady Luz Banzon Magsaysay and Education Secretary Manuel Lim as  principal sponsors  –  The chapel was inaugurated on December  8, 1957. The blessing was conducted by then Manila Archbishop Rufino J. Santo (who would later become cardinal). The chapel is 62 years-old in 2019.

5.)  Sitting Capacity and Standing Capacity – The chapel can only accommodate between 300 to 350 people at any given time. Which is small compared to the number of students, faculties and employees of the university.  The altar area was elevated by 5 feet so that those standing outside can still see it unobstructed from the Tamaraw Plaza, Independence Plaza, Freedom Park, Activist Plaza. Which a further 300 to 500 people can view the ongoing mass of celebrations outside the chapel.

4.) Talleres Maximo Vicente– Several religious icon found inside the chapel are carved by a well -known religious sculptor santorero Mr. Maximo Vicente from Quiapo district. He was commissioned to make the life-sized statues of Sacred Heart of Jesus, Our Lady of Fatima and Joseph with Jesus in the late 1950’s.

3.) La Pieta by Napoleon Abueva – This was donated by the Maestro Napoleon Abueva to the university in 1999. This was made from fiber glass material and the personal interpretation of the La Pieta in Rome.

FEU chapel interior- the crucified Christ was oil on canvass by Maestro Carlos “Botong” Francisco. and the halo at the center was for the Our Lady of Fatima.

2.) Stations of the Cross and Crucified Christ by Maestro Carlos “Botong” Franciso – The 14 stations of the cross is divided into different sections. The painting was signed on August 1, 1956 by the artist.  The Crucified Christ serves as a focal point of the chapel is made from oil on canvass.

tile mosaic

1.) Our Lady of Fatima tile mosaic by Vicente Manansala–  One of the rare works of Vicente Manasala in glossy blue hues for the facade of the chapel.

How to commute and take public transportation:

1.) From East side of Metro manila : Ride the LRT-2 Station and alight off at Recto Station. From there, look for Jeepneys bound to Morayta ( Nicanor Reyes Sr. street) . Ask the driver to alight you at FEU gate #4.
2.) If you are coming from the North or South:  Ride the LRT-1 and alight off at Doroteo Jose Station.  From there, look for Jeepneys bound to Morayta. Ask the driver to alight you off at FEU gate #4.
3.) From Novaliches/ Blumentritt / Retiro area: Take a Blumentritt route then take Dimasalang- UST – Padre Campa route.
4.) Fairview area: Take jeepney with Quiapo route or bus , take off at Lerma street. There is an underpass.
Photo courtesy of Mr. Dennis Maturan, a participant of the Balik FEU and UE campus tour
Note: There is a FREE guided tour conducted by the author or FEU tour guides (by special appointment) At least 1 week in advance reservations.

Sources and References:

Personal interview with FEU alumni

Commemorative marker inside the chapel

FEU Paragon – Mr. Conrado L. Venzon IV and Ms. Donna Mae Z. Catangay

 

16th Open Library Exhibit at University of the East -Manila

It was a hot sunny afternoon around past 2:00 pm when we were given an opportunity by the University of the East-Manila administration to visit their campus.

Mr. Generoso Caringal greets the visitors

We were warmly received by Mr. Generoso Caringal (director- office of the cultural affairs ), Mr. Peter Marc Ramos, Mr. Angelo Vergel de Dios
(UE Assistant University relations officer) members of the university admission office and faculty.

University of the East- faculty, students and employees

The tour group were ushered to the 6 story- library building which is located near the F.T. Dalupan gate ( formerly called Gastambide street ) gate of the campus.

participants

The group were amazed with the number of white painted mid-century old buildings and commemorative plaques.

 

(photo courtesy of  Ms. Dodie Escartin )

The visit coincided with the 16th University of the East library open house exhibit which features interesting exhibit created by the library staff, graduate school students and faculty.

lualhati statue sculpture made from wood

spacious library hall

The administrator gave the group a short audio visual presentation of the 11 library system and facilities that the university have.

participants

All of the participants enjoyed the vast collection of books ( a lot of them were professors, teachers, students, heritage advocates, cultural workers and bibliophile).

creative exhibits from recycled materials

(photo courtesy of Ms. Dodie Escartin )

 community based volunteer and kindergarten teachers from Tondo also took some time to to examine the materials.

University of the East library staff and employees

recognition and several awards given to the university’s library

hardbound books on display

Dr. Jeorge Ferrer liked the book on shells and beer,  While i like the book on orchids and onions ( middle and far right). Professor Dennis Maturan liked the old photos, memorabilia collection and Filipiniana section.

dry garden ( atrium area)

University of the East old photo

The campus also had a memorabilia section dedicated to UAAP, Francisco Dalupan and archives.

The participants had a very good impression of the library and for some memorabilia collector ( a chance to see the personal memorabilia of the founder).

16th University of the East- Library Open House exhibit runs from July 05 to 12, 2019.

Note: We would like to “Thank” the office of President Ester Garcia, Mr. Generoso Caringal, Mr. Zosimo Battad, Mr. Angelo Vergel de Dios, admission office and the University of East employees.

Visita Iglesia of 14 Churches and Chapels in Manila

Walkwithchan in special arrangement with Royal Postal Heritage tour, heritage groups conducted a FREE guided tour on Maundy Thursday (April 18) and dubbed the walking tour as Visita Iglesia of 14 Churches and Chapels in Manila.

Palacio del Gobernador and Plaza Roma with art works

We decided to open a FREE Visita Iglesia 2019 walking tour, since our group will visit Intramuros and sharing the beautiful spots in Manila with the ordinary public.

hoardes of people walking along Rizal avenue, Santa Cruz

Visita Iglesia 2019

tarpaulin map of intramuros

huge tarpaulin poster from intramuros administration – this serves as a guide for parking area, churches, chapels and interesting places within the walled city.

station of the cross along General Luna street

The FB event attracted 66 participants but only 30 people manage to find the group at the meeting place which is at Plaza Roma- King Charles IV statue and fountain. cellphone signal is weak.

Manila Cathedral Basilica during the Chrism mass

There were a lot of people at the Chrism mass. This is one of the important liturgies during the holy week. It took me almost 15 minutes to get out of the cathedral basilica. There is only one exit. I have to be at the main plaza by 6:30 am. I saw Philip Reyes then followed by Jose Juan Paraiso ( who did not get a sleep) members of Advocates for Heritage Preservation group and other participants.

The plaza seems abuzz with all sort of tarpaulins, balloons and the mood was very festive.  The Chrism mass is being shown via large screen to the people at the plaza.

Minor Basilica and Metropolitan Cathedral of Immaculate Conception facade

The Minor Basilica and Metropolitan Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Beaterio St., Intramuros.

Manila Cathedral Basilica back portion

Saint Agustine Church and convent

Saint Augustine interiors

Saint Agustine Church, General Luna St., Intramuros

Father Willmann Chapel, Santa Potencia St., Intramuros.

Dendrobium anosmum aka sanggumay

The group took time in admiring the neatly manicured garden and large trees within the compound. As an orchid grower, I also took time to examine the Dendrobium anosmum (sanggumay) orchid flowering. This is of of the all time favorite native orchids.

Father Willmann chapel altar

statue

Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM ) facade

Shrine of Jesus the Divine Teacher, Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila, Muralla St., Intramuros.

Shrine of Jesus the Divine Teacher altar

The Catholic Chapel of the Mapua Institute of Technology, Muralla Street, Intramuros.

Mapua Institute of Technology -chapel altar

The security guards at the Mapua Institue of Technology were also helpful to the participants, Some of them needed to have a bathroom break.

Lyceum of the Philippines University entrance

chapel of the sacred heart of jesus

 chapel interior

The group were greeted by the security guards of the university while some participants took time filling up their water bottles at the fountain station.

Colegio de San Juan de Letran facade

 chapel

Colegio de San Juan de Letran is one of the oldest secondary school for boys and was established in 1620. The college is already busy preparing their 400th anniversary in 2020.

chapel interior

Colegio de San Juan de Letran’s central courtyard had a neatly manicured lawn with large trees, bromeliads, Dendrobium hybrid orchids, native orchids, frangipanis and ornamental plants.

There is also a fountain and several statues of their alumni and patron saint. There is also a mini koi pond and water plants planted at the fountain area.

The group had a busy time admiring this painting at the back portion of the chapel

Roman Ongpin statue- Ongpin corner Quintin Paredes street

This time, we have to walked from Intramuros cross the Jones bridge towards Binondo district.

main altar

Minor Basilica of San Lorenzo Ruiz, Plaza Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila, Binondo

some of the participants enjoyed hot rice porridge (lugaw) and filtered water courtesy of the barangay chairman of place.

filtered water

rice porridge

The group enjoyed the hearty mid-day meal and some took time buying some treats at nearby Eng Bee Tin bakery. There was also a water station in front of the bakery.

 beautiful flower arrangement at the side altar

main altar

Archdiocesan Shrine of the Blessed Sacrament, Plaza Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, Manila

Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene, Quezon Boulevard, Quiapo, Manila

Some of the participants had to beg-off after this leg of the tour. It is getting hot as it is almost midday. Our group had to go under the bridge since the underpass is close and the footbridge is few meters away. Signal is also weak.

Bakerite

tasty bread

Bakerite is one of the iconic homegrown bakeries in Quiapo district. They are the ones who popularized the brand “Tasty”. The bread is good and the group took a short snack time inside this bakery.

Shrine of the Holy Face of Jesus, 1111 F. R. Hidalgo Street, Quiapo, Manila

Shrine of the Holy Face of Jesus chapel

The chapel is located at the 2nd floor of the shrine. This is also the final resting place of the founder and of the congregation members.

participants

 tomb

Minor Basilica of San Sebastian, Plaza del Carmen St., Quiapo

main altar

D.Genaro Palacios y Guerra ( main architect ) marker at the floor of the minor basilica

San Beda College- Abbey of Our Lady of Montserrat, Mendiola Street,  San Miguel

historical marker

National Shrine of St. Jude Thaddeus, Jose Laurel Sr. Street, San Miguel, Manila

passage way which connects the parish to the center

Saint Jude Catholic School and Parish welcome arch

Saint Jude Thaddeus national shrine main altar ( photo taken from the 2nd floor choir area)

old organ built in Germany in the 1950’s at 2nd floor of the shrine

some participants lighted candles and have their moment of prayer at the shrine

a mid -1930’s ancestral house along J.P. Laurel street

 Malacañang place gate 4 along Jose P. Laurel Sr.street

We took a longer route going to the next national shrine, since the presidential security group (PSG) only allowed one portion of Jose P. Laurel street ( security issues).We walked from Arlegui street towards Aguado street passing several old mansions like the ones owned by Laperal family ( Arlegui mansions) and several turn of the century houses along Aguado street. It is sad to see that the former Cocina de Tita Moning ancestral house is closed.

Office of the President ( Presidential Complain Center) along Jose P. Laurel street

The group decided to have a short stop over at Casa Roces– Fine dining restaurant owned by the Roces family ( a separate blog entry) Some of the participants wanted to eat and we have a short photo opportunity. We spend about an hour or so at the restaurant before visiting the next church. It is almost 2:00 pm,when we finished our hearty meal.

San Miguel church main facade

interior

baptismal front

elaborate tombstone by one of the benefactors of the church

group photo at the entrance of the church

National Shrine of St. Michael and the Archangels, Gen. Solano Street, San Miguel

interior and altar

St. Anthony of Padua Shrine, Manrique Street corner J. Figueras street, Sampaloc

facade

Our Lady of Loreto metal sculpture at the side of the church (by Eduardo Castrillo)

Our Lady of Loreto church and Saint Anthony Shrine were dubbed as twin churches of Sampaloc. These two churches were badly destroyed during the closing days of February 1945.

historical marker

interior and main altar

Archdiocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Loreto Parish, Sampaloc, Manila

This is like a homecoming event for me, We lived few blocks away from these two churches for almost 15 years.  Most of the participants had to finished their Visita Iglesia trip at this point. Only 10 were left and we decided to hitch ride together going to Immaculate Conception church.

Immaculate Conception church interior

side altar bedeck with flowers and candles

Immaculate Conception Parish, Katamanan Street, Tondo, Manila

Espiritu Santo church side entrance

Espiritu Santo interior

decree

It was declared an Archdiocesan Shrine by Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Tagle on June 8, 2014, the Solemnity of the Pentecost.

The church an interesting neo-gothic architecture with a lot of modern elements and this had a parochial school located within its compound. This used to be a public cemetery until early 1900.  The church was fully completed and solemnly blessed on May 14, 1932.

Archdiocesan Shrine of Espiritu Santo, Rizal Avenue, Santa Cruz, Manila

San Roque de Manila interior

San Roque of Manila church along Avenida Rizal, Santa Cruz, Manila.

We hope to have a repeat tour of these churches next year.  The group would like to extend our heartfelt ” THANKS” to the intramuros administration, schools, government buildings, universities and shrines which opened their doors to all the pilgrims, local and foreign tourists.