How Pinoys in Japan Celebrate All Saints Day and All Souls Day


It’s always a peaceful, fun and reflective time to celebrate All Saints’ and All Souls’ as Pinoys.  Locally referred to as “Undas,” this is that time of year when remembering the dead and being grateful to have known them, fills the hearts and minds of everyone. It’s something to compare parallel to Thanksgiving, where people remember to give thanks, only in this case, we give thanks for having been blessed with those whose lives has passed on.

Strong, loving bonds of family are seen whenever these two days roll along. You can expect each Pinoy who has roots in the provinces catch the last train, bus, boat or plane to be able to spend these holidays with their family. The cemeteries are filled to the brim, colorfully peppered with candles, flowers and food that the living bring with them to re-live, re-tell and recall how the dead were when they were still living.

how pinoys in japan celebrate all saints day and all souls day


Filipinos abroad such as in Japan still continue to celebrate these holidays despite being far from the islands.  The most popular of which is to visit the nearest temple or church and light a candle for the dearly departed.  Novenas are offered and prayers are uttered in deep remembrance and as an expression of love.  Candles are also lit to acknowledge the hope and belief that those who have passed away are in a good place.

Having dinner with fellow Filipinos to celebrate these days are also a good way to bond and catch up with those who share the same grateful heart for having been blessed.  Most times, there’s food offered and candles lit to acknowledge the dead should they be around the gathering as well. And usually, the highlight of such events – or if one chooses – to just get cozy and video call Skype with family in the Philippines to be with them albeit virtually – and the distance just melts away.

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