18 Kilometers - Binondo to Baclaran Church

I'm finally at the last stretch of my narrative for our pilgrimage from Monumento to Baclaran Church. The members of the Filipinos for Life, the pilgrims for this journey, was exhausted becuase of the long walk that we made the whole morning. Our lunch break in Lan Zhou La Mien refreshed us but not it is not enough.

The energy that we recharged during lunch was gone almost immediately when we stepped under the burning sun.

We left Binondo, passed by Escolta and Lacson Plaza. The intense heat made me lazy to pick up my camera so I had no photos for these places. It is good though that I have posts about Kalye Escolta and Lacson Plaza that you can read about.

Our group crossed the Pasig River using the MacArthur Bridge. Our crossing allowed me to once again see the Manila Central Post Office.
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Manila Central Office along Pasig River
Manila Central Post Office.

Across the post office are the towering buildings of Escolta.
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Buildings of Escolta, Manila
Escolta buildings.

The bridge we were walking on was named in honor of General Douglas MacArthur. He is the so-called “liberator of Manila” during the Second World War. I read somewhere that MacArthur is held in high esteem by Filipinos. That's why many believed in him when he said his famous promise, “I shall return,” before he ran away to Australia while the Philippines is falling to the Japanese Imperial Army.

Statue of General Douglas MacArthur, Manila


The statue of the general marks the bridge. The statue commemorates MacArthur's landing at Leyte, where he fulfilled his promise. A blogger friend named Stef, who owns the blog And These Thy Gifts, commented that the soldiers look like they're standing on a bed of tulips. I agreed with a big hearty laugh. A thought suddenly popped in my mind showing the manly MacArthur and his soldiers skipping and dancing a la “Sound of Music”.

Sound of Music for Douglas MacArthur


Hundred steps later and we reached Mehan Garden. The statue of Alexander Pushkin caught my attention because I never heard of him being involved in any part of the Philippine history.

Statue of Alexander Pushkin, Manila


Pushkin's monument was erected to celebrate the friendship between the Filipino and Russian people. I found it weird that I passed by this statue few minutes after I passed by the statue of MacArthur, who is the enemy of communist Russia.

Few more steps later and we finally saw the clock tower of Manila City Hall:

Clock tower of the Manila City Hall


And another monument of Andres Bonifacio:

Monument of Andres Bonifacio near Manila City Hall


I felt that my whole body is burning while we walked. My sweat was flowing like waterfall. The bottled water that I brought was near its boiling point. Every step was agonizing and every shade is a welcome respite. Maybe all that we need that afternoon is to be poured with sarsa (sauce) so we can become lechon.

The sun is throwing all of its radiation towards us but we walked on. We raised our fists against the sun. Mere sunlight will never deter us in doing penance for the sake of this country and the hundreds of unborn children being threatened by an unjust law and the hard hearts of many people.

Slowly we walked along Taft Avenue and pass by Luneta Park and a few steps more we saw the naked statue of the Oblation in front of UP – Manila.

Oblation statue in University of the Philippines - Manila campus


Few more kilometers and we found ourselves along Quirino Avenue and saw the entrance to Manila Zoo.

Filipinos for Life Pilgrims along Quirino Avenue
F4L pilgrims along Quirino Ave.

Our walk along Roxas Boulevard was the hardest part of our pilgrimage. Exhaustion already set in and only our will pushed us to move forward.

I gave a sigh of relief when I finally saw the Heritage Hotel.

The Heritage Hotel located along EDSA, Pasay


We finally reached EDSA! We are very near Baclaran Church! This realization gave us new energy. We can finish this 18-kilometer walk.

Filipinos for Life pilgrims crossing EDSA
Crossing EDSA

Street vendors, parked vehicles and the chaos of this place is blocking our path but we passed through them. After walking 18 kilometers, I say that Baclaran Church is the most beautiful church that I had ever seen.

Baclaran Church
Baclaran Church!

We said our final prayer and there we ended our Lenten Pilgrimage.

Filipinos for Life pilgrims
Filipinos for Life

Our walk from Monumento to Baclaran is very exhausting but a one-of-a-kind experience. Aside from praying for our fight against the RH Law and the unborn, the pilgrimage was an opportunity for me to see Metro Manila more closely. There is chaos in our streets but I also saw beauty that is hiding beneath the chaos and dirt. Our 18 kilometers also proved that we can do difficult things as long as our will is strong to do it.

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This is the fourth part of my narrative about the Filipinos for Lenten pilgrimage. Read the first part, second part and the third part of this blog series.

18 comments:

  1. nice buti naman mejo familiar ako sa mga napuntahan nu haha
    napaghahalataan kasing di ako gala ee haha

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  2. Hala, grabeng walkathon naman pala ang ginawa ninyo!

    Hmn, tinitingnan ko yung last picture and I am wondering alin ka sa kanila hehehe

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    1. Grabe po talaga. Pero kinaya naman namin. We survived. :-)

      Wala po ako sa kahit sino jan sa photo.

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  3. wow ang galing ninyo! I will suggest we do this too in Bacolod :)

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    1. Yes Ma'am. You should also do this in Bacolod next Lent. This is a good way to celebrate the sacrifices of our Lord.

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  4. apart from being beautiful... mejo high tech din no? haha.. I used to visit here everyday when I was working in Makati Ish and maganda rin yung confession box nila dito

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    1. Hi-tech nga sa Baclaran pero sana naman hindi maging super-high tech. Mas gusto ko pa rin yung old school pagdating sa simbahan.

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  5. yun ang winning shot, yung huli. kaso sana nakasama ka rin sa mga kuha. hehehe

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  6. Your country is soooo beautiful. Was in Manila in 1981. I wish I could go again someday....

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  7. LOL at the Sound Of Music parody! : D

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  8. The Baclaran Church is indeed beautiful!

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  9. So you completed your 18 km walk! Congrats for this achievement! : D

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  10. I guess it's a great opportunity for you to see and take pictures of Metro Manila - perfect for a blogger like you! : )

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  11. omegash! hang layo ng nilakad nyo...tapos naka picture at smile pa kayo sa lagay na yan ha?...surely, you will be blessed...:)


    xx!

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    Replies
    1. Syempre. Kailangan maging cheerful sa mga activities na tulad nito. :-)

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  12. hahaha, na-special mention pa pala ang blog ko dito. salamat! :D

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