Blessing of The Chapel of the Assumption

Friday, March 04, 2016

Last December 30 2015, the office I volunteer for was tasked to cover the blessing of Ateneo de Davao’s three new buildings. I was mainly assigned to shadow our school’s president, Father Joel Tabora, and spent most of my time covering the blessing of the school’s new chapel.

The first icon you see as you approach the main altar is a portrait of the Madonna wearing a traditional Maranaw headdress, painted by Davao artist Mark Tolentino. The place also featured brasswork by Sajid Imao, mosaic panels of Yakan fabric design provided by Chales Belleza of Belleza Casa Designs of Cebu, a mural of the procession to the Risen Lord by Bong Espinosa, stained glass windows by Roland Kraut and Orient Glass, Yakan lining by Krishnan Kin Nasser Ilui of Zamboanga, and a massive 11ft crucifix by Paloy Cagayat of Paete.

It’s more of a little church than a chapel, really. It’s not just the enormity of it, but the beauty of it as well. Father Tabora envisioned a chapel that was completely mindanawon in nature, a chapel where anyone would always feel welcome and at home, and he was given exactly that. The entire chapel was like a museum filled to the brim with mindanao’s culture. I regret not taking photos of the details, but if you’re an atenean or if you find yourself in Davao someday, the chapel is definitely worth a visit.

The blessing of the chapel was one of the biggest events AdDU has ever had- filled with people who were full of happiness and passion and talent; people who were awestruck by the talent that created the beauty before them, and people whose pure talent made the whole chapel as beautiful as it is. God gazed down at everyone that day, I reckon. And i’m pretty sure he smiled.

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