The Church of the Gesù

The Church of the Gesù stands on the Sacred Heart Hill inside the Ateneo de Manila University campus. This triangular-shaped church looks deceivingly small, yet it can seat up to 1000 people. The Church of the Gesù is a refreshing sight as churches go. It has simple yet elegantly streamlined exteriors that look very modern. The interiors are just as uncluttered, with only a couple of focal points: the semicircle stained glass that encloses the stoup at the back and the crucifix that is situated in the other direction.

I have been to The Church of the Gesù several times, but the most special visits were when it was packed to the rafters (Ateneo glee clubs concert) and when it was empty. In either case, Gesù has had soothing effect on me, with its predominantly blue and white colors (the colors of Ateneo) and the beautiful natural light coming from the outside that looks like the whole church is radiating with God’s presence.

The façade of Church of the Gesù

The façade of Church of the Gesù

The Sacred Heart of Jesus statue in front of Church of the Gesù

The Sacred Heart of Jesus statue in front of Church of the Gesù

The inscription of the Sacred Heart of Jesus statue is from Matthew 11:28. It says, “Come to me all of you who are burdened, and I will refresh you. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and gentle of heart, thus you will find refreshment for your souls. My yoke is sweet and my burden light”. Photo by SPRDC

The inscription of the Sacred Heart of Jesus statue is from Matthew 11:28. It says, “Come to me all of you who are burdened, and I will refresh you. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and gentle of heart, thus you will find refreshment for your souls. My yoke is sweet and my burden light”. Photo by SPRDC

The Church of the Gesù as viewed from the left side. Photo by SPRDC

The Church of the Gesù as viewed from the left side. Photo by SPRDC

The Church of the Gesù from the right side. Photo by SPRDC

The Church of the Gesù from the right side. Photo by SPRDC

Right side of the interior of The Church of the Gesù

Right side of the interior of The Church of the Gesù

Near the main entrances of The Church of the Gesù are the semicircle stained glass that depicts the Stations of the Cross and the grey stone that acts as the stoup. The top of the stoup continuously churns out holy water that slowly and silently cascades down the sides of the stoup to the stones at the bottom. The continuous movement of water means that dirt and other impurities are not left resting on the stoup.

Near the main entrances of The Church of the Gesù are the semicircle stained glass that depicts the Stations of the Cross and the grey stone that acts as the stoup. The top of the stoup continuously churns out holy water that slowly and silently cascades down the sides of the stoup to the stones at the bottom. The continuous movement of water ensures that dirt and other impurities are not left resting on the stoup.

The top of the stoup has a noticeable depression and a salmon-colored clay plate with the Jesuit seal sits at the center of it. Photo by John

The top of the stoup has a noticeable depression and a salmon-colored clay plate with the Jesuit seal sits at the center of it. Photo by John

The crucifix hangs above the main altar that is made of adobe rock.

The crucifix hangs above the main altar that is made of adobe rock.

The Church of the Gesù is right in front of Bellarmine field. The Bellarmine building was the farthest in Ateneo College. It took almost 10 minutes or the entire break time between subjects to run from Chemistry building (now Schmidt Building) to Bellarmine.

The Church of the Gesù is right in front of Bellarmine field. The Bellarmine building (on the right side of the photo, hidden by trees) was the farthest in Ateneo College. It took almost 10 minutes or the entire break time between subjects to run from Chemistry building (now Schmidt Building) to Bellarmine.

On the left side of The Church of the Gesù is a statue depicting the Agony in the Garden. Photo by SPRDC

On the left side of The Church of the Gesù is a statue depicting the Agony in the Garden. Photo by SPRDC

Resting in the garden of the Agony in the Garden. Photo by SPRDC

Resting in the garden of the Agony in the Garden. Photo by SPRDC

On the right side of The Church of the Gesù is a series of spiritual exercises called Contemplatio. Photo by SPRDC

On the right side of The Church of the Gesù is a series of spiritual exercises called Contemplatio. Photo by SPRDC

Contemplatio is broken down into weeks. The spiritual exercise for the first week is called “God’s boundless Love”. Photo by SPRDC

Contemplatio is broken down into weeks. The spiritual exercise for the first week is called “God’s boundless Love”. Photo by SPRDC

An examen clock is part of Contemplatio. Photo by SPRDC

An examen clock is part of Contemplatio. Photo by SPRDC

A couple of instructions or spiritual exercises from Contemplatio. Photos by SPRDC

A couple of instructions or spiritual exercises from Contemplatio. Photos by SPRDC

Parts of Contemplatio: An Interactive Experience of the Spiritual Exercises. Photos by SPRDC

Parts of Contemplatio: An Interactive Experience of the Spiritual Exercises. Photos by SPRDC

Parts of Contemplatio: An Interactive Experience of the Spiritual Exercises. Photos by SPRDC

Parts of Contemplatio: An Interactive Experience of the Spiritual Exercises. Photos by SPRDC

 

 

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