The odd collection, which was posted at online auction site Ebay.ph from July 27 until it was sold on August 3, was owned by a Rev. Santiago Gabriel, former priest who was assigned in different parishes in Pampangga during his active term.
Gabriel, 84, was reportedly advised by his Filipino-Australian nephew after the latter learned about his unique collection, to post the items online for sale, in order to help raise money for his worsening health condition. Gabriel is suffering from lung cancer.
James Thomas, the clergy’s nephew who work as medical researcher in Australia, told his uncle that his collection could fetch handsome amount of money.
An article on Perth Today said that the the former Catholic clergy started collecting used condoms during early late 40’s, when he was studying in an unidentified Catholic seminary in Manila.
“I was young and curious about the things I often see inside the seminary. I collected things out of curiosity”, the retired priest said.
The paper said that Gabriel’s collection includes several of many earliest condom brands that ceased to exist today, including commemorative items.
Gabriel also said that more than half of his collection were collected and found inside the seminary which he refused to name. The former priest even joked of using some of the condoms.
Eleven foreign bidders fought to win the auction, mostly American health companies, but an Australian firm took home the valuable odd commodity.
Thomas, his nephew said, the collection is a high value to medical research firms, even to current condom manufacturers.
“It’s a big surprise that someone collected these items. An odd collection by an unlikely collector”, the paper said. /Julia Santos/