The Philippines and Halloween – Manila News
Many customs, however, are rooted in the popular Catholic notions of purgatory, a place of “purification” for souls waiting to ascend to heaven.
For instance, bell tolling is meant to comfort souls being cleansed. Candles serve as a beacon of hope for those who are lost in the shadows. Soul cakes are given to children coming to sing or pray for the dead, giving rise to “trick-or-treating” which comes from the belief that the dead roamed the earth and needed to be appeased.
On All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day, Roman Catholic feasts on November 1 and 2 while cemeteries across the country are crowded with people paying their respects to departed loved ones by offering flowers, candles and prayers.
Filipinos usually visit the tombs of their departed on November 1 and 2. But they clean the graves and mausoleums as early as weeks before. Both the 31st of October and the 1st of November are often declared non-working holidays to allow people extra time to spend time with their families and honor the deceased. Since a lot of people need to travel to their hometowns, schools often suspend classes for an entire week otherwise known as Undas break.
Families reunite and camp out at the cemetery with feasts and good cheer to honor their loved ones. They offer praise and thanksgiving for their deceased kin through prayers, flowers, candles, and food. Chinese Filipino families also burn incense.
As most of the country’s traditions are often influenced by Western culture, some Filipinos also practice trick-or-treating, celebrate with costume parties, and of course, tell spooky stories to try and scare each other.
Watch out for the next part of our Undas series to know more about Filipino Halloween customs.
The post The Philippines and Halloween – Manila News appeared first on Petgais News.