Philippines : The Longest Christmas Season Essay

Philippines : The Longest Christmas Season Essay

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Among the many countries in the world, Philippines is distinctly known to have the longest Christmas season. Preparations for the holiday start as early as September because Filipinos consider the months ending with the syllable ‘ber’ as Christmas months. The celebration ends on the Feast of Epiphany or Three Kings which is celebrated on the first Sunday after New Year. Christmas is a time for Filipinos to set aside their personal problems and for once give in to the spirit of giving and sharing. The history or background, customs and traditions and also the attractive decorations make the country’s holiday season unique and interesting.
Christmas is translated as ‘Pasko’ in Tagalog. Pasko is derived from the Spanish words Pascua de Navidad. Historically, Pasko “is influenced by Western countries especially Spain who ruled the country for over three centuries. But while these traditions live up to this day, Filipinos have placed their own trademarks to make them authentic and uniquely Pinoy” (Brown). Philippines is also an overwhelmingly Christian nation (the third largest Catholic country in the world). Approximately 90% of Filipinos are Christians and 80% of those are Catholics. As a result, while many countries concentrate on the commercial side of this holiday season, Filipinos consider church and family as the main points of the celebration (CNN.com).
One of the most popular Filipino traditions is Misa de Gallo which was brought by the Spanish colonizers. It is a series of novena which starts from December 16th and ends on December 24th. This is locally known as Simbang Gabi which literally means ‘Night Worship.’ Filipinos go to church at three or four o’clock every morning and afterwards have breakfast together. This speci...


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...on that brings out the best in everyone. It is more than just a celebration because it is a blissful way of welcoming the coming of our savior Jesus Christ. As one united nation bonded with faith in God and love for family, this season signifies a very special occasion as it is the time when we share precious moments together with our loved ones. Filipinos love Christmas but it does not mean that we should only get excited and prepare for the activities on the month of December, it means that we should feel the Christmas spirit all year round and do good deeds each day of our lives. Celebrating Christmas in the Philippines is the best time to bask in the glow of the Filipinos’ merry spirit and experience the famous brand of hospitality. As Filipinos would greet anyone on the street, a “Maligayang Pasko at Manigong Bagong Taon!” (Merry Christmas and Happy New Year).

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