Quiapo, Manila is known for its heavy Catholic presence (especially in the Feast of the Black Nazarene), but it is also known to be a Muslim center here in Manila. That is why the Masiid al Dahab (or the Golden Mosque) is located there, and it is considered the largest mosque in Metro Manila.
A little bit of history...
It was built in 1976 by the orders of then First Lady Imelda R. Marcos. It was said that Mrs. Marcos ordered the mosque to be built in preparation for the arrival of the late Libyan President Muammar al-Gaddafi. Unfortunately, the visit was cancelled.
I visited the mosque and was a little frustrated to notice that it has been neglected. Well, the Golden Mosque dome was just painted gold (not like other known mosques in South East Asian where it is covered with gold foil), and it is now lacking in luster. There are street children around its entrance begging money to those rich Muslims who entered the mosque to pray, taking advantage of the kind generosity.
If only the government of Manila will take a good effort to rehabilitate the mosque, I’m sure it will regain its former glory.