Ramadan Ends; Congress Opens

Today, our Muslim brethren throughout the country are celebrating Eid’l Fitr, a day of celebration marking the end of the month of Ramadan in the Muslim calendar. Ramadan itself is a sacred month to Muslim just as the Lenten season is to Christians as Muslims practice day-long fasting and sacrifices throughout that period.

Muslim Filipinos in Manila celebrating Eid’l Fitr last year

Owing to the fact that the Muslim calendar is a lunar calendar, the date of Eid’l Fitr varies from year to year. This year actually, the celebration fell on July 28 but the Philippines will be celebrating it as a holiday on the day after, perhaps due to the precedence with the State of the Nation Address happening on the 28th. More on that a bit later. Continue reading


“Sentral”: The Iglesia Ni Cristo’s Central Complex

Today marks the centennial anniversary of one of the most influential Philippine-based religious groups, the Iglesia Ni Cristo. While they will be celebrating their centennial at a wider and bigger venue outside Metro Manila, the Ciudad de Victoria complex in Bulacan, particularly in the 25,000-seater outdoor venue Philippine Stadium and the 55,000-seater (the biggest indoor venue in the country) Philippine Arena, the Urban Roamer has chosen to highlight today the INC’s current headquarters, their Central Complex located along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City’s Barangay New Era.


aerial shot of the whole INC Sentral, courtesy of inewmedia.org

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The Iglesia ni Cristo at F. Manalo, San Juan

The Iglesia ni Cristo, (INC) the religious group founded by Felix Manalo in July 1914, grew in numbers and influence by the 1930s. Even after World War II, in which the INC suffered greatly as well, it still managed to become a dominant force in Philippine society, thanks in part for its practice of bloc-voting that many aspiring politicians sought to have.

Perhaps the most visible example of INC’s growth after the war was the building of what would be its central temple and offices in Barrio (now Barangay) Santa Lucia in the then suburban town of San Juan outside Manila. From 1952 to 1968, this would the INC’s “home base,” so to speak. And even then, its San Juan complex was a sight to behold, never failing to draw attention from anyone who passed by the area, INC member or otherwise.

Iglesia Ni Cristo at Barangay Santa Lucia, San Juan (courtesy of chitchuandnoan.com)

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Checked Out: Franchise Asia Philippines 2014

Last July 16-20, the SMX Convention Center near the SM Mall of Asia served as host for what is dubbed as “the biggest franchise event in Asia,” the annual Franchise Asia Philippines.

Franchise Asia Philippines aims to showcase a variety of franchising concepts and, in turn, business opportunities for people who are looking into building their successes in the realm of franchising. Continue reading


Mabini150: The Mabini Shrine and Museum

Today marks the commemoration itself of Apolinario Mabini’s 150th birth anniversary. What better way to close off this special than a feature on the house that has long been talked about: Mabini’s Nagtahan house now known as the Mabini Shrine in its new and permanent “home” right at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines’ (PUP) main campus, which is also known as the Mabini Campus.  (even before the move of the shrine) While it may seem odd to find such a house looking out of place in the middle of a busy campus, it does seem to complement the campus in a way, serving as a sort of a quiet spot that is insulated from all the activity going on around it.

Its transfer in 2009 was made possible thanks in part to the efforts of the PUP President at that time, Dr. Dante Guevarra. For the move, the house was actually taken apart and put back piece by piece in such a way that it remained faithful to the original house’s design. In 2010, it was decreed that the PUP site would be the permanent home of the shrine, thus ensuring its legacy from any possible future movements. Continue reading