Manila, Nov 1 (EFE).- Millions of people in the Philippines visited cemeteries on Tuesday to honor their dead on the occasion of All Saints’ Day, which was celebrated after a gap of two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Filipino people went to churches to pray for the souls of their dead and visited the graves of their loved ones with flowers, candles and food, undeterred by the rain that has lashed most parts of the country.
This day is celebrated in the Philippines in a festive atmosphere, with families spending much of the day – sometimes from the night before – next to the tomb of their deceased, even singing karaoke or taking selfies.
In the densely populated capital of Manila, thousands of families honored their loved ones at the Marikina Cemetery, where colorful niches were arranged on top of each other in blocks separated by intricate corridors.
The Philippines, which is the only Catholic-majority nation in Asia along with Timor, is considered the second country that most celebrates the “Day of the Dead” after Mexico.
All Saints’ Day is known in the Philippines as “Undas,” or Day of the Dead, which for some also includes the Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed, which is held on Nov.2.
“On All Saints’ Day, the Senate of the Philippines honors all those who dedicated their lives in service to God. May the observance remind Filipinos to follow their examples of faith, devotion and love,” the Philippine Senate tweeted.
A police force of more than 192,000 officers have been deployed at around 4,768 cemeteries for the occasion, the National Police said in a statement on Monday.
“The pandemic of recent years forced us to come to terms with our mortality. It taught us to number our days as we realize the uncertainty of our time on Earth,” President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said in a statement on the occasion, and urged the people to visit cemeteries.
Simultaneously, and as a reflection of the cultural fusion of Filipino society after centuries of foreign colonization, Halloween – a pagan feast of Anglo-Saxon tradition – was celebrated on Monday in the archipelago. EFE