Christmas in the Philippines | Simply Me / Karen Jardeleza

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Saturday, December 17, 2011

Christmas in the Philippines

Philippines are generally one of the most Catholic countries in Asia. Christmas in the Philippines is one of the biggest holidays. As early as September we could hear over the radio some Christmas songs being aired and selling lanterns in the street. Filipino homes and commercial buildings are decorated with beautiful lanterns (Parol) and surrounded with Christmas lights. 

Philippines are being distinguished of celebrating the world's longest Christmas Season. Well, we Filipino just love the Christmas season.

As the Christmas season begins we look forward for lot of thing. Parties, gifts, bonuses, food, kris kringle and more. Christmas is  the most awaited celebration and the happiest event in the Philippines. This is also a moment for a family get together.

It's a Christmas tradition to us Filipino to conduct a nine-day dawn or night masses that starts every December 16 and ends on December 24 at midnight known as the Misa de Gallo or Simbang Gabi or Night Mass (Rooster's Mass). This novena is very much important to Filipino for their devotion and faith to God and some had the belief of the completion of the nine-day novena masses with special intention or wish that will be granted.

Most Churches are decorated with colorful lights and parol lanterns and a "Belen" (Baby Jesus Christ with Virgin Mary, St. Joseph) is displayed in preparation for the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ.

In some churches Simbang Gabi start as early as 4am and another night mass at around 8pm. After the Mass church goers buy some Native traditional Filipino food or delicacies being sold outside the church such as puto bumbong, bibingka, suman and other sticky native food, pandesal, hot coffee and more.

Here in the Philippines, group of people go to each house and do some caroling by singing Christmas Carols using different kinds of musical instrument or improvise instruments like bottle, metal, bottle caps and others that could make a sound for there songs. This caroling become a tradition to Filipino every Christmas Season.

Christmas Tree is one of our decorative centerpieces for our home surrounded with dazzling lights and different ornaments just like anywhere in the world with a gifts around the beneath of the Christmas tree.

Christmas won’t be complete without Food. Noche Buena , a traditional Christmas Eve feast, a family feast and a family tradition as well with loaded of foods on the table, time for thanksgiving and spending time with families. Ham (Hamon) is one of the many menus for Filipinos Noche Buena and has been part of Filipino Christmas tradition to take part in a table during Christmas Eve.

On the Christmas Day itself Family go to church in celebration of the birth of Jesus. For some Christmas Day is like having a family reunion, were family and relatives gather together to celebrate or just spending the day at home with family.

Christmas in the Philippines is a time for thanksgiving, time for families, time for gift giving and time for everyone else.
Let’s make everyday a Christmas Day!

Merry Christmas Everyone!
Check this out:
Gingerbread Village
Festival of Lights and Music at CPU
Le Cirque Event
Angelicum School in Iloilo

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