Filipinos are warm people and happy. They are known to celebrate and prepare sumptuous food on their tables. This is their way of expressing thanks for all the blessings they received. If you are invited to a Filipino party make sure you have an empty tummy because for sure it will be full. Don’t forget to bring your singing voice too, because singing is always present in Filipino parties.
Holy week is another holiday that Filipinos look forward to. Starts on Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, then the weekend. It is a long weekend for government workers and school. This is one of the holidays that Filipinos go to for places and beaches. Before, Filipinos followed traditions like not eating too much on Good Friday. On Black Saturday or Easter Vigil the Catholics visit different churches. The climax of the holiday is the Resurrection or Also know as Easter Sunday. It starts with a Dawn Mass they call “Salubong.” After the mass you can find all kinds of Filipino desserts along the streets outside the church. Many celebrate Easter Sunday in different beaches and enjoy grilled fish, pork and the famous noddle "pansit."
Another holiday is on November First and Second. It is a celebration remembering the dead. The 1st is for All Saints Day and the 2nd is for All Souls Day. Even if this is to remember the dead, this holiday is not very sad. Filipinos prepare food and visit the cemeteries. They usually stay overnight. I think this is the fun part because families talk about their loved ones that died. They share experiences of how they miss the person and the love. Then, the games, singing and of course the food. The Philippines doesn’t celebrate Halloween but I think the new generation is adopting the western celebration for fun.
Each town and city celebrates the day the place is known. Like,“Araw ng Dabaw” is a holiday in Davao city and celebrated in the month of March. The people in Davao usually watch the parade, go to malls and eat at restaurants. No work and no school. That is the time to visit landmarks of the place and enjoy the different food, fruits, crafts and entertainments.
It is a big thing that almost all Catholic families will prepare food. It is like “Thanksgiving in the US.” A family would even have one whole pig roasted and that is called lechon. The table is full of food with all the goodies that you can imagine.
Fiestas are celebrated in small communities, parishes, subdivisions, and even the cities has its own fiesta. Why are they celebrating it on different dates and places? The Catholics have so many Patron Saints and each saint has their own dates to celebrate and honor them. The organizers usually begin with a thanksgiving mass officiated by the parish priest. After that, games and some entertainment for the visitors. They also do Santacruzan or Flores de Mayo which is a parade of beautiful ladies. It is about finding the true cross of Queen Helena or “Reyna Elena” and Constantine the great. Filipinos are proud of their beautiful ladies and yes, they got the Miss Universe crown, 4 times. And more in other beauty pageants around the world.
Well, go back to fiestas and enjoy singing, dancing, games, and most of all food.
In my childhood days my parents would get the blood of the chicken and make a sign of the cross on our forehead. I think it is a pagan way because it is a ritual. Then, it is tradition that they do, to let those evil spirits away from the birthday celebrant. They must have base it on the time of Moses putting blood on their doors so that the angel of death will not harm the Jews. The new generation is not doing that anymore. They just blow candles on the cake and wish. It was not practiced before but new parents celebrate every month of the child until the first year.
Simple or Grand Filipinos will make sure that the wedding is something to be remembered by the couple. Couples usually do the first dance but the sponsors and other visitors are welcome to pin money. So many superstitious beliefs. I will just give one. The first one who stands up after kneeling will be the dominant person in the family.
This is motivational for students. Parents would be static if their kid passed. It is like winning a trophy or it is a precious gift. It is freedom from all tuition fees, projects, field trips and many more. This is a great celebration. Now they can get a job hahahaha. It is time for them to go out of the world and be on their own. Stop!!! Filipino parents are like hens, they will always prefer their kids stay home.
Filipinos easily adopt the new trend. The way of life is always a celebration. I think parents are marking every move of their babies. Can you imagine the bakers in the Philippines? The cakes will have, “First step!” , “First smile”, “First word”, and so on.
Enjoy have fun and celebrate life!