All Saint's Day in the Philippines 2014

November 1 and 2 are huge holidays here. This morning we walked around the cemetery that Jerard is buried in. It's busy already and will get busier as the day goes on.

Our friend, Tomas, who works at the cemetery

more info on all saints day.................
Filipinos pay their respects to their departed loved ones on All Saints' Day, a liturgical celebration that begins at Vespers on the evening of October 31 and ends at the close of November 1. They offer flowers, food baskets, and prayers and light candles in cemeteries, memorial parks, mausoleums and columbariums nationwide where they gather with friends and relatives, say prayers together, and share food and memories.

Hallowmas or All Hallows is a term for All Saints' Day. In the Philippines, it is called "Undas," "Todos los Santos," or "Araw ng mga Patay." The celebration is similar to Mexico's "Dia de los Muertos." For Catholics, it is a holy day of obligation, when they go to Mass and participate in ceremonies for the dead.

Government agencies, assisted by private groups and individuals, help ensure that the traditional event is peaceful and orderly. The Department of Transportation and Communications activates "Lakbay Alalay" to ensure that roads and highways are in good shape for safe and comfortable travel, while Department of Health places medical personnel on standby in strategic areas. The Philippine National Police and Metro Manila Development Authority beef up their security in crowded public cemeteries, bus terminals, air and sea ports. The Bureau of Fire Protection is on alert to safeguard lives and properties.

In Catholic theology, the day memorializes those who have attained the saintly vision in between. In New Zealand, Catholics build altars to pray, hold vigil, light candles, and offer flowers, to honor Christian martyrs. In Lisbon, Portugal, children mark Papor-Deus, and go door-to-door where they receive cakes, nuts, and pomegranates. In France, church celebration memorializes all the saints.

The first All Saints' Day occurred on May 13, 609, when Pope Boniface IV accepted the Pantheon in Rome as a gift from Emperor Phocas. He dedicated the day to honor the Virgin Mary and all the martyrs. During the reign of Pope Gregory III, the festival was moved to November 1 to include the honoring of all saints. He consecrated a chapel to all the martyrs in St. Peter's Basilica.