Unidad Educativa Borja, Cuenta

Scott 2083
2012, a souvenir sheet to honor the 75th anniversary of the Jesuit Unidad Educativa Borja, Scott 2083

The first Jesuit college in Cuenca was founded in 1638 by Fathers Francisco de Figueroa and Cristóbal de Acuña, who was its first rector. It operated for almost 130 years until 1767 when the Jesuits were expelled from Spanish territories. After the Restoration of the Society the Jesuits returned to Ecuador in 1862, and the college at Cuenca was briefly restored to them from 1869-1876, when political problems again forced their withdrawal. From 1897 on there was a drive to have a Jesuit college in the town, spearheaded by Mrs. Rosa Malo, widow of the illustrious local citizen, Rafael Borja, but the anti-Catholic laws of the time and the lack of Jesuits, prevented this. Finally thanks to the generosity of that lady, the Rafael Borja School was founded in 1937. In 1946 a boarding school was founded and named for St. Francis Borja, third superior general of the Jesuits. At the end of the 70's the Jesuits began the construction of a new complex which opened in 1981 under the rectorship of Fr. Jorge Carrion, SJ, and in this beautiful complex the Escuela San Francisco de Borja and the Colegio Rafael Borja were united to become the Unidad Educativa Borja.

The College of St. Gabriel, Quito

Scott 2085
2012, a stamp to honor the 150th anniversary of the Jesuits' return to Ecuador and of the College of St. Gabriel, Scott 2085

Scott C321 Scott C322
ECUADOR, 1958, the 50th anniversary of the miracle of Saint Gabriel's College, Scott C321-22
The 19th-century entrance

The College of Saint Gabriel in Quito, founded in 1862, is as famous for its miraculous image of Our Lady of Sorrows as it is for its educational excellence. Two stamps bear the image of the school's old door.

Scott 1016
ECUADOR, 1981, the 75th anniversary of the miracle, Scott 1016
The Saint Gabriel college church

Scott 1171 Scott 1172
ECUADOR, 1988, the 125th anniversary of the school, Scott 1171-72
The contemporary facility, the 19th-century entrance, Our Lady of Sorrows.

The official page accompanying the release of these stamps says: "For 125 years this college has tried to fulfill to the best of its ability the important mission of the Society of Jesus in the service of the youth of our country. They have been years, certainly, filled with vicissitudes, triumphs, arduous battles and fearsome defeats. At the outset the institution was constituted as a National College; years later it was deprived forcefully of its laboratories, library, and even its buildings. Strong winds of anticlerical obscurantism were blowing in those days, and San Gabriel College was on the point of disappearing completely. But in 1906 — at the height of the anticlerical period — came the miracle of April 20 . . . From that time on, the history of the College of San Gabriel began to be written with a new start . . ."

The Jesuit Church, Quito

Scott C16 Scott C17 Scott C18

Scott C19 Scott C20 Scott C21 SCott CF2
ECUADOR, 1929, Scott C16-21, CF2
The last stamp is overprinted as an air registration stamp

The Jesuit Church (the Iglesia de La Compañía de Jesus, or simply La Compañía) on the Calle Garcia Moreno in Quito was finished in 1765 after being under construction since 1605, and just a few years before the Suppression drove the Jesuits out of South America. A blend of Baroque and Quiteño art, it is one of the most ornate churches in Latin America and has been named part of the Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Scott 478 Scott 479 Scott 480

Scott 489 Scott 525 Scott 526 Scott 527
ECUADOR, 1947, Scott 478-480, with overprints in 1948 and 1949, Scott 489, 525-527

ECUADOR, 2012, a souvenir sheet to honor the 150th anniversary of the Jesuits' return to Ecuador features the church,and its special FDI cancel, Scott 2086
The issue also includes three stamps to commemorate the College of Saint Gabriel in Quito, the Unidad Educativa Borja in Cuenta, and the Unidad Educativa San Felipe Neri in Riobamba

Scott 1242 Scott 1244 Scott 1244b
ECUADOR, 1990, Scott 1242, 1244b
Note the highly ornate ceiling of the church on a stamp and souvenir sheet

Scott 1654b Scott 1603d Scott 1689a
ECUADOR, 2002 dated 2001, Cultural Heritage of Humanity, Scott 1654b
2002, one of five paintings by Ecuadorian Wilfrido Martínez, Scott 1603d
2003, Cultural Heritage of Humanity, Scott 1689A

ECUADOR, 2011, Seven Marvels of Quito, American Cultural Capital, Scott 2030,
featuring the church of the Jesuits, Scott 2030f

Scott 1682
ECUADOR, 2003, The Guayaquil Stamp Club stamp-on-stamp issue, Scott 1682
showing the air registration stamp (Scott CF2) to the left of the club seal.

This 15 centavo stamp (banana palm tree), said to be the smallest on any postal stationary, is imprinted on the reverse side of the following postal cards. The cards give some idea of the richness of La Compañía's decor.

 H&G 20/10 The Facade H&G 20/17 Columns H&G 20/18 Sacristy Entry H&G 20/19 The Pulpit H&G 20/23 The High Altar H&G 20/24 The St. Joseph Altar H&G 20/27 Arch H&G 20/48 Side of the High Altar  

In 1938 Ecuador commissioned two sets of postal cards printed by the Geographic Institute Agostini of Novara, Italy, from photographs by the German-Ecuadorian photographer Bodo Wuth. The first set of fifty cards is numbered and eight of them feature views of La Compañía, namely: 10 The Facade, 17 Columns, 18 The Sacristy Entry, 19 The Pulpit, 23 The High Altar, 24 St. Joseph's Altar, 26 An Arch, and 48 The Side of the High Altar. Each scene seems to have been printed in blue, brown, and green. (Higgins & Gage catalog 20)

Seen also at the end is an unnumbered brown postal card, from the second series, of the side tribune over the entrance into the sacristy. This was printed in Italy and imprinted with the different 15 centavo stamp to its left.

ECUADOR, 2012: A case of mistaken identity. The imprint on this postal card claims that these are the domes of the Jesuit church;
They are in fact the domes of the church of the Dominicans in Quito, Santo Domingo.

The Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador, Quito

Scott 1410 Scott 1411 Scott 1414
ECUADOR, 1996, 50th anniversary of PUCE, Scott 1410-11, 1414

The Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador (PUCE = Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador) was founded in 1946, and celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1996, when these stamps were issued. The founder and first rector was Fr. Aurelio Espinosa Polit SJ (1894-1961), specialist in liberal arts, member of the Academies of Language and History and winner of the National Prize in Literature in 1933. It was entrusted to the direction of the Jesuits in 1962 and named a Pontifical University in 1963.

Unidad Educativa San Felipe Neri, Riobamba

Scott 2084
2012, a stamp to honor the 175th anniversary of the Jesuit Unidad Educativa San Felipe Neri, Scott 2084

The Unidad Educativa San Felipe Neri, a Jesuit secondary school in Ecuador, owes it origin to Fr. José Veloz y Suarez a zealous priest of Riobamba, who wished to use his property for the good of his fellow citizens. After building the Church of San Felipe in Riobamba 1815, the year after the Restoration of the Society, he worked for the re-establishment of the Jesuit colleges there that had been suppressed in 1767, and sought the government's assistance to get the Jesuits to return. It was a time of confusion and transition for the national administration and it would be 1862 before the Jesuits' definitive return. But shortly after 1827 this tireless benefactor of Riobamban culture initiated classes of grammar and the humanities. On 13 October 1836, President D. Vicente Rocafuerte appointed him "Rector of the National School of San Felipe Neri." And while this should probably have been recognized as the date of the college's foundation, the traditional founding date is the date of the donation of his property, April 25, 1838. On 21 September 2000, the Colegio San Felipe Neri became Unidad Educativa San Felipe Neri, and on that date it began to use the new coat of arms inspired by that of Ignatius Loyola.