RECORD-BREAKING.  Around 24,000 members of the Thomasian community gathered at the UST open field on Ash Wednesday to form the “largest human cross”. This is UST’s second attempt to be in the Guinness Book of Records, after the staging of the “largest human rosary” last December 8. Photo by PAUL ALLYSON R. QUIAMBAO

THE THOMASIAN community formed the “largest human cross” on Ash Wednesday last March 9, in its second attempt to enter the Guinness Book of Records.

An estimated 24,000 Thomasians gathered at the UST field to form the black-and-white Dominican Cross, symbolizing the Catholic and Dominican identity of the University.

Campus Ministry head Fr. Winston Cabading, O.P. said the idea of forming a cross came from the students, after the formation of the “largest human rosary” in December was not accepted by Guinness as a world record.

“We wanted the event to be spiritual in nature. We are not only celebrating Ash Wednesday, but also the 400 years of the University,” Cabading said.

In his homily during the Mass after the Guinness attempt, Fr. Filemon de la Cruz, O.P., vice-rector for Religious Affairs, said that during Ash Wednesday, people must remember that they came from ash and that they are not immortal.

“[First, you] should remember you came from dust and into dust you will return. Second, [you should] turn away from sin and be faithful to the Gospel,” De la Cruz said in Filipino.

De la Cruz said the human cross was very “small” compared with the “Cross of Christ.”

“Ang krus ni Kristo ay kayang sakupin ang ating kahinaan, ating kasalanan, at kaya tayong ibalik sa tamang daan,” he said.

Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim and Far Eastern University President Lydia Echauz were invited to serve as witnesses to the formation of the human cross.

Also invited were representatives from Far Eastern University, Adamson University, and Ramon Magsaysay High School-Manila.

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UST Public Affairs chief Giovanna Fontanilla said the event was meant to highlight the importance of penance in the season of Lent.

According to the Guinness website, Oslo, Norway holds the record for the largest human cross, with only 900 participants.

Documentation of the event was to be submitted to Guinness for confirmation.

Lim congratulated the University for mounting the record-breaking event, and pointed out that the Philippines remains a predominantly Catholic country.

“It broke the record, and I want to congratulate [Rector] Fr. Rolando de la Rosa for making this huge event possible,” Lim said. with reports from Darenn G. Rodriguez


  1. what is the point of partaking attempts to break the world record??? to have more publicity?? pride??? recognition?? ego?? enlighten me…


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