Sunday, February 1, 2015

THE MINISTRY OF THE BATHROOM

J
They really hate Msgr. James:

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "From: Lulu Duenas": 

Iam sure that Monsignor James is a leader but you all need to know who he really is and the followers are the same. Tim you got to be joking about all that comments and tell the truth,I just can't believe all this talk,talk,......Let's all pray for one another 
Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "NOTICE TO MSGR. DAVID C. QUITUGUA, RECTOR, AGANA C...": 

James you need tell the Catholics that it was your idea about the tourists/visitors sign and the collection box. Therese told me that you are the person to look for if I wanted to make a comment.

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "NOTICE TO MSGR. DAVID C. QUITUGUA, RECTOR, AGANA C...": 

Check James he should no why the sign and donation box is there,ask him where is the money 
Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "NOTICE TO MSGR. DAVID C. QUITUGUA, RECTOR, AGANA C...": 

Iam sorry but it was Monsignor James idea to charge the visitors/tourists.Tim I think we need to ask James why he had that sign and box inside the church.I think that the Cathedral was running out of money,so James where is the money 

So let me take care of all of these before this poor dingbat soils himself.

The idea for the collection box for the visitors at the Cathedral originated with me. When I became affiliated with the Gift Shop in 2009, I became aware of the problem of "bathrooms". The Plaza de Espana and the Cathedral was a major tourist stop and sometimes there would be several buses of tourists frequenting these locations. 

There are no bathrooms at the Plaza so naturally tourists would think there would be a bathroom in the Gift Shop. There wasn't. The only bathrooms were in the garage area and it wasn't easy to explain how to find them when you don't speak Japanese or having to do it 10 to 20 times a day, which is about how often we got asked. 

Sometimes if more than one employee was present at the Gift Shop, one of them would guide the tourists to the bathrooms, unlock them, wait for the tourist to finish, and then guide them back to the gift shop. But usually there was only one employee at the Gift Shop and they had to make a choice between locking up the Gift Shop and taking the visitors to the bathroom or just saying "no" when we were asked if there was a bathroom. 

In addition there was also the issue of maintaining the bathrooms more than the usual once a day maintenance if they were to be used by busloads of tourists. 

I really felt that it was the duty of GVB to provide public restrooms for tourists at a major tourist stop such as the Plaza de Espana, but there were none, and I and the other employees often just had to say "no bathroom" when we were asked. Even entertaining the question became a burden when asked 10 to 20 times per day while we attended to the many other duties of running the Gift Shop. 

However, I know how important having access to a restroom is when you're on a bus tour, so I proposed "the ministry of the bathroom". It worked like this:

  • A flyer was made in Japanese with a map to the bathroom.
  • A key would be provided.
  • A dollar would be charged to cover maintenance.
  • Some form of ID would be left at the Gift Shop counter.
  • The ID would be returned when the key was returned.
  • The maintenance person would be made aware of the use of the bathroom and would continually check it to make sure there were always enough paper supplies and that the bathrooms would be clean throughout the day. 

Obviously all this took time. The cashier at the store often had to interrupt a sale in order to process the request for the key, a request which could occur several times with the sudden presence of 30 to 40 tourists. And the maintenance and the paper supplies would require the maintenance person to service the restrooms several times a day. 

We tried this for awhile but it really did become a burden. At the same time there was a need to police the tourists inside the cathedral. Tourists would often go up on the sanctuary to have their pictures taken. Security cameras inside the Cathedral would alert which ever staff was on duty and one of the staff would have to stop doing what they were doing to go and ask the tourists to stay off the sanctuary. (The tour guides were supposed to do this but usually they did not.)

To fund the extra costs of running a public restroom for several busloads of tourists on a daily basis and to assist with the costs of constantly monitoring the activities of the tourists in the cathedral, it was decided that it would be easier to set up a donation box at the entrance of the Cathedral rather than task the Gift Shop employees with having to charge $1.00 every time they were asked about a bathroom. 

So a donation box was set up at the entrance but the donations were VOLUNTARY. Under Msgr. David, the policy was changed to make the "donations" MANDATORY. 

So there's your story, you poor thing. Now, run along and find something else to obsess about.




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