Extended Arts Center of Elizabeth: A Safe Haven for Creativity

The Extended Arts  Center of Elizabeth is the home to:

  • Panlilio Antique Shop
  • Panlilio Art Gallery
  • Panlilio Imaginarium
  • Purple Pillars Production
  • Divine Child Foundation

 Programs and Services

  • Advocacy for young LGTB “ Coming Out”
  • Alleviation of Poverty
  • Art Classes
  • Art Shows & Exhibits
  • Art Workshops
  • Children & Family Programs
  • Cultural Shows & Festivals
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Film Festivals
  • Housing Projects
  • In-house Gallery Tours
  • Mental Health Promotion
  • Photography Sessions
  • Play & Broadway Production
  • Social Philantrophy
  • Support Groups for NJ victims/responders of 9/11


This Arts section will feature expressions of beauty in varied mediums. Its value cannot be underestimated when it comes to its stress-reduction effect and benefits.


The Culture section features diversity among our midst. The workplace and the society we live in has become a colorful mosaic of varied cultures around the world. However diverse it is, there is unity and harmony because men are social beings with a common feeling and single language of love: Caring.

The New American Women Series

PAKISTANA, The New American Woman: “Coming Out of Her Shadow”


A year after The Nursing Office initiative, “Supporting Women and Minority-Owned Business,” we are proud to witness the birthing of the Pakistana, the new American woman, who has finally come out of her own shadow as well as those cast by close-knit family and ethnic circles.


Since April 2016, a circle of Pakistanas, and other South Asians like Indians, Bangladeshis, along with women from Indo-Caribbean groups, have made the Storefront of The Nursing Office Community Center, a hub and hang-out place for these women coming out of their shadows.


While they may be visible in their families and ethnic groupings, they remain invisible to the larger American community.  They are full-time mothers, housewives or part-time workers as care-givers, nannies, housekeepers, employees in various roles, enjoying only the comfort of speaking their own languages and engaging in fun of women like them bonding together.  They come with their school children, refer older ones for employment, ask for benefits and services, or seek information on how to become US citizens. 


Because of the comfortable and friendly space afforded by the storefront of The Nursing Office, the Pakistanas are learning to reach out to other ethnic groups and exploring ways & means of connecting with other women, by talking of common (and serious) concerns, such as, immigration or citizenship status, healthcare benefits and housing (or lack of it).  Many are reaching out to explore new options, like learning to speak English better, after observing how those with better language skills are opening up more doors for gainful employment or owning a business, or just getting ahead.


Indeed, we are witnessing a new American woman, the Pakistana, emerging from the fear of her own shadow and who has come to participate in perfecting this Union called “America.” 


Ludy Resurreccion/ 04.28.2017

New York City: A Cultural Mosaic

Guatemalan Women (Columbus Day Parade,Oct,13,2013)
The Women of India, NYC Indian Parade August 16, 2013
A Hindu Band, NYC Indian Parade, August, 2013
Loving-Kindness, Compassion, Peace from The Buddhist Council of New York Aligns with Nursing


Arts & Culture: The Pow Wow from the Roots


A Pow Wow was originally a wise man, with a healing power flowing from his special connection with the gods; hence, he is looked upon with high regards and respect. His wisdom gives him peace and ability to get through the essence of things, so that he can drive away illnesses, ensure success in battles and lead his people.


Transforming the pow wow and relating it to the modern world is not only an art by itself but a scientific phenomenon to explain how arts and culture affect the way the community conducts its business, health, and other matters of everyday life.


As we gather ourselves in this Festival, we welcome you all as Pow Wows. You are all healers with all the powers within you, abundant and natural. Let us put these powers collectively to build a common bond and strength to deliver a successful and improved business district of Union County.


Let’s take Arts and Culture into the next level. Bring out the Pow Wow in you!


Myrna D. Santos, RN

The Nursing Office Extended Arts

“ A safe haven for creativity”

Redefining the Arts in Nursing, June 15, 2013 "Ang Pagdating ng Krus at Espada"

The Nursing Office Presents a Theatrical Production


The Nursing Office Extended Arts/ Purple Pillars Production & Las Islas Filipinas proudly present a contemporary Zarzuela Filipina.

The story line is based and adapted from the historical novel by Cristo Rey Alunan, entitled "Las Islas Filipinas," The Philippine Islands Book I, The Story of Visayan Enrique and the Voyage of Admiral Ferdinand Magellan.

The main theme is the Filipinos' struggle for freedom and triumphs of self-determination, which began with Lakan Lapu-Lapu's victory over Magellan's forces, through the 377 years of Spanish colonial period (1521-1898), 2 1/2 years of British occupation (1758-1762), 48 years of American Occupation (1898-1946), 3 years of Japanese occupation (1941-1944) and the Philippine Renaissance in modern times.

The objective is to describe a continuous Corridor of Philippine Colonial and Contemporary History from Filipinos' own perspective, utilizing indigenous art forms and expressions, such as, visual drawings, crafts, poetry, music, dance and movement, which have survived to this day, and blending these forms with modern technological multimedia.

Most importantly, to reveal and authenticate a vibrant and spirited culture that has existed among pre-history and pre-colonial Native Indigenous peoples located in the 7, 107 islands presently known as The Philippine Archipelago. Spotlighted also are the sub-themes of Indigenous Healing traditions (from katalans, babaylans to midwives and nurses), Martial Arts/Warrior traditions of Kali Silat, and various indigenous artifacts.

This is the First of a Series of Episodes on the contemporary Zarzuela Filipina, created by Purple Pillars Production, artistic theatrical arm of the Extended Arts Program (Safe Haven for Creativity) of THE NURSING OFFICE.ORG based at 52 North Avenue, Elizabeth, NJ 07208.


Myrna D. Santos, MSN, RN

Executive Producing Director

A Community Faith: Pit Senor Santo Nino at Union, NJ

Sinulog : A Philippine Tradition Comes to NJ


A tradition called Sinulog was celebrated in the community of Union, NJ, led by Fr. Manolo last January 6, 2013. The day falls on the day of Epiphany which honors the Three Kings that visited the Child Jesus in Bethlehem.


Sinulog is a community celebration of one faith: Santo Nino ( Child Jesus). Read more





The First Tribute to the Ecuadorian Community at the Bayanihan Center/ Philippine Forum at Queens NY

Art Show: The Passage

The Passage opens great doors twice

The Art Show Passage which was opened to public viewing at the Philippine Center Lobby in NYC last April 23, 2012 was a huge success. It was the launching of DOLORES: The Colors of Pain, a research on “breaking through pain” by Myrna D. Santos, RN. It also opened a door of possibilities and dream come true to 2 young Filipino visual artists, particularly Michael Bacol who has been in search for his fate since he was a kid.


What color is your pain?

Life is an art. There’s a big canvas out here, with all the mediums available within us. We all have the love of arts in us. We are all artists. Let us express our pains and challenges in every way and form we could. Let us paint our life in all colors.

Each masterpiece of life is a unique design and expression. Let us present our life in all its intensity, beauty and drama. We can do it, once and for all become the Greatest Artist there is, it is not the art, but the power of your message.
"How can we present pain better than its colors, as experienced by everyone, in all its intensity, drama, and beauty?"And if only a painting can say a thousand words, say it: DOLORES: What color is your pain?

Myrna D. Santos, MSN, RN

Principal Investigator/Director of Studies



A Muslim youth reads Qur'an at age 7

Ramadan: The Holiest Month of the Qur’an amongst Islam

By: Myrna D. Santos, RN



·         Islam is a continuation of the religion of Abraham, Moses and Jesus.

·         Qur’an is the Islamic Bible and the “most read book in the world” because it is a book that is so often read, re-read and memorized, and all in its original language, Arabic.

·         Ramadan is the month of the Qur’an. It is the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar that begins with the sighting of the new moon.


A Month of Fasting

Ramadan is celebrated with a month-long fasting to inculcate “self-discipline, self-restraint and generosity”. “Fasting is an act of deep personal worship to God in which Muslims seek to raise their level of God-consciousness. The act of fasting redirects the heart away from worldly activities and towards the remembrance of God. It is a time of spiritual reflection, prayer and good deeds.”


All physically mature and healthy Muslims are obliged to fast between dawn and sunset, when they abstain from all food, drink and any kind of sexual contact. Fasting is the third of the Five Pillars of Islam.

Purity of thought and action are emphasized while fasting.

Nurses in Arts:"Nurtists"

Nurses in Arts

It is heartwarming to know that there is a growing number of nurses getting into another world: Arts. We will call these nurse artists as “nurtists”. We will present them here with their works and passion for the arts. Whether they are doing nursing or expressing and creating their arts, the bottom line is the interplay of both human emotion which is kindness and caring expressed beautifully in their chosen mediums.

 Shown from left to right: Ruben Lee (Videography/Film Making), Potri Ranka Manis (Theater)and Marietta Ganapin (Artist), taken at the Gala Night of Arteon at the La MaMa E.T.C. Gallery on May 21,2010.

Courtesy of myRNphotoimages

A nurse in search of the role of ancestral arts and culture in healing

Pandibulan (bathing by moonlight)

By Potri Ranka Manis, MA, RN

A Nurse Artist conceives, choreographs and directs Pandibulan (bathing by moonlight), a cultural presentation featuring dances, music, and folktales from the Yakan people of Southern Philippines.

The story evolves on a woman from the southern Philippines, working as a caregiver in New York, rekindles her strength of spirit through the folklore and lifecycle rituals of the Yakan people of Basilan Island.  Tales of her ancestors, stories of the sea, dazzling dreams of dragons that swallow the moon and magical struggles for the earth and sky at once sustain her and make her nostalgic for her village and home. There is a unique interweaving of tradition with the contemporary issues of modern life for a caregiver with her feet on two continents.


Potri Ranka Manis is a literary genius, artist, and foremost a nurse who have served for over 30 years, a portrait of a knight and hero, a Modern Nightingale. She has recently obtained a Masters degree in nursing. She continually explores through qualitative searches on the role of ancestral arts and culture in the science and art of healing.


And yes, indeed, it has been based on evidence that in nursing, culture matters.


Photo by Steven Castro

Christian Living

The Christening of Tovi

Tovi is an American tot of Filipino heritage who is very lucky to be growing up in a nurse's home. His grandmother, Cindy Margalit, and his parents, Jeffrey and Pam Medida, are all nurses.

Beginning a Christian life in the Roman Catholic Church starts with Baptismal rites as the sacrament of baptism is bestowed upon the child usually within the first days or months after birth. Among Catholics, baptism is a celebration, a gathering with friends and family celebrating with a feast.

Tovi’s baptism is not an ordinary party, but a reunion and celebration of a family. They came from all parts of the world to celebrate the blessed day. The traditional rites were held at Our Lady of Pity Church in Staten Island, NY and the reception was held at the Old Bermuda Inn on Veterans Road.

The celebration continued with prayers, lighting of candles, and other festivities that I have not seen any time in my half-century as a Catholic. It was light yet solemn,  centuries-old tradition alive in modern times.

Welcome to Christianity,Thomas Vincent "Tovi" Medida. God Bless.