For Catholics, the first two days of November are for the saints and for the dead, respectively, commonly known as All Saints’ Day (November 1) and All Souls’ Day (November 2). On these days, some are still doing what had been pre-Hispanic practices such as the belief in the “anito”, a word for the deceased and spirits, and the offering of food and other favorite things of the deceased, such as cigarettes and a pack of cards, at the altar. The Catholic Church does not encourage these traditional rituals but rather look at it as manifestations of the people’s faith.
However, these occasions have a much deeper meaning. According to Msgr. Julius Heruela, parish priest of Bacong, Negros Oriental and Fr. Archie Toroy, assistant parish priest of Zamboangita, it is important to understand the meaning of Halloween. It comes from the root word “hallow”, meaning holy, and it is more appropriate for the children to dress up like saints and not as monsters. Furthermore, it is important to offer masses for the departed so as to alleviate their sufferings while still in purgatory so that one day they will enjoy eternal bliss in heaven.
The priests are also encouraging the people to visit their dead in the cemeteries. If it cannot be done, they advised the Catholic faithful to pray the Our Father and the Nicene’s or Apostle’s Creed for the dead and to pray the Our Father, three Hail Mary’s and one Glory Be for the intention of the Holy Father, Pope Francis.
Benefits for Employees Working on All Saints & All Souls Day
The Department of Labor and Employment -7 (DOLE 7), through its Regional Director Exequiel Sarcauga, is reminding employers that October 31 and November 1 are special non-working holidays and employees who reported for work on these days are entitled to receive additional compensation. There are already prescribed rules but these can be superseded should company policies be more advantageous.
Additional benefits for workers range from 30% to 50% of their daily wages, the latter being used for workers reporting for duty on their rest day which falls on a holiday. Sarcauga advised the companies to follow labor rates so that employees will not be compelled to complain.
Peaceful November 1 Celebration
It had been a peaceful All Saints’ Day in the Negros Island Region, said Senior Superintendent William Señoron, acting provincial director of the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office, and Senior Superintendent Henry Viñas, acting provincial director of Negros Oriental Police Provincial Office. Deployment and monitoring in all cemeteries will continue until Wednesday, November 2, and the full alert status of all stations will be lifted on November 3.