We celebrate All Souls’ Day too-A A +A
By Ben Emata
From Across the Seas
Thursday, October 31, 2013
I HAVE been in the United States of America for more than twenty years and I never saw any celebration of All Saints’ Day or All Souls’ Day. And to think that the country is Christian with more reasons that such season for the dead should be observed.
It is definitely sad that the dead seems not honored by the living. The cemeteries here do not show lighted candles and tombs with fresh flowers. There is just nothing because people do not visit the place on All Souls Day.
People do not mind anything on such days and they go to work just like ordinary days. I know for one thing, some Filipinos offer prayers, masses, rosary, novena for their dead relatives and visit the cemetery and nothing else more than that. There are no parties in the home to honor the dead like the things we do in our country. There is really lively celebration in our country and people visit several homes to offer prayer and later served with special dinner.
It is the matter of trick and treat that prevails everywhere and really practiced by Westerners. The night before All Saints’ Day is colorful and lively in the American homes. That is on October 31st that the real celebrations come out lively. Young kids and even adults visit houses door to door and shout “trick or treat.” Others sing and dance in their Halloween costumes like skeletons vampires, witches and anything horrifying. Every home is prepared to give some gifts to these kids like candies and anything to eat.
It looks the affair is more for children than a religious matter. The night is lively and bright and everyone cooperate with the tradition. It is more of a culture than anything else. The religious side is overtaken by the strength of customs, or culture. People enjoy the affair with their children who carry large boxes filled with candies and other gifts. In my case, I enjoy watching the kids in their masks and attire that are terrifying. Their parents really spend for their kids who go “trick or treat.”
There is so much fun in the American way of celebrating All Saints’ and All Souls’ Day. But I was so used to, and exposed to the way we Filipinos handle the matter. In our country, the first thing we do is offer novenas and prayers to our departed relatives.
The reasons I supposed why the less religious activities of the celebration is America has so many kinds of religions. Roman Catholic is one of them and there are Protestants like the religions of people from numerous countries. The U. S. A. is inhabited by practically all kinds of nationalities from Europe, Latin America, Africa, Middle East, Mexicans, Asians and many more.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on October 31, 2013.