Fratres Adeodati: Fighting Clericalism as a Cause Bigger Than Ourselves

Neguri, Spain: Besides advocating for the preservation of the Spanish language in the Philippines, I have always been opposed to clericalism. Simply put, among the many iterations of this cancer that afflicts the Roman Catholic Church is the sense of entitlement on the part of some misguided members of the clergy, feeling somehow superior over the laity and…

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Weddings Bells

Neguri, Spain: Singularly positioned on the slope of the Basque Country cordillera, the Augustinian-run Iglesia del Nuestra Señora del Carmen stands out, alluring, elegant and devoid of pretentions, magnet par excellence for those who want to get married or want their marriage vows renewed, far from the prying paparazzi and with utmost feeling of security….

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The Present-day Cradle of Gregorian Chant

Neguri, Spain: The monks of Monasterio de Santo Domingo de Silos shot to international prominence in 1994 with the surprising commercial success of their CD of Gregorian chants. My friend, Spanish author Josemaria Alonso Alonso de Linaje, takes extreme pride in the fact that the monastery is found in his home province of Burgos in northern Spain. On…

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Bounties of Porciúncula

Neguri, Spain: While on a trip to Santander two years ago, I visited for the first time the Capuchin-run Monasterio de San Sebastián, thanks to a couple of artist- friends who drove me to the historic site. There, we struck up an acquaintance with Fray Valentín Martin, prior of the monastery. Since Fray Valentín is…

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The Dream Castle of Butrón

Neguri, Spain: The other day, my poet-friend Antonio Aguirre came to pick me up at Iglesia del Carmen and drove me to his idyllic Barika estate for a cup of tea. As is our wont when we meet, we discussed literature and read the poems of Francisco Quevedo and his contemporary poets who lived during…

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