It is a Sunday, and my Nanay and I decided to hear mass at San Pedro Cathedral Church.
It has been some time since the last time I visited the church. This church held a lot of stories, not just mine but most of the people in the city. San Pedro or St. Peter Cathedral is located at the heart of the city. It faces the city hall and the it stands right next to the busiest street of the city, yet when you enter this majestic dome, you can still feel the solemnity of being in a holy ground.
Our family has been going to this church since I was 5 years old. Back then, there were only few people living in Davao. Traffic congestion is an alien word and only a few vendors litter the perimeter. Now, once you go out of the gated church, vendors selling peanuts, fruits, second hand stuff, balloons and candles are everywhere. It's like a Sunday market outside the church. They were all hollering for attention. Chaos. In a friendly way.
The church has not change much. the big dome that covers the main church still has that shiny parquet ceiling. This beautiful ceiling must have kissed a thousand balloons since it was built in 1847. The marble floors, albeit the dirt, still looks the same. The dull surface makes up for the shiny ceiling. The massive altar that displays Christ on the cross. It was simply decorated with not much ornaments, but then, it still exudes charm. Both chapels that flanked each side of the main church, still has the original religious statues. Candle vendors still guard the doorway, in case you need some candles once you are done praying. I'm one of those who frequent the candle shed. If you have any prayer intentions do it with a candle stick. A candle for each intention.
During my board examination review, I visit this church daily with a handful of intentions and I feel lucky that most of them turn out to be way better than I have prayed for. That's why a lot of people flock this church, some with a disability, some are there just to ask for alms, some are there just to sit and wait for someone. And some are there just to have a little peace. If the walls of this church could talk, it would have thousands of stories to tell, just like the number of balloons