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(From Philippine Daily Inquirer)
Byline: Denis Murphy
DURING THE LAST months, I was privileged to visit the catacombs in Rome and Alcatraz, the former prison that sits like a chunk of granite in San Francisco Bay. They can give older people some idea of possible roles they can play in their lives.
In the San Callisto catacombs of Rome, along the ancient Via Appia, we visited one of the holiest places on earth, the Chapel of the Popes. Despite a grand name, it is a small alcove, the size of a large closet cut into the tufo rock that lines the dark and narrow passageways. Perhaps, it can contain only 10 people at a time. No effort has been made to glamorize the spot. It is rough and unattractive: primitive people could have fashioned it. Burial niches are cut into the sides and back of the alcove, and here, for hundreds …