Preparations for X’mas shift into high gear

NATIONWIDE preparations for Christmas Day festivities last Sunday went into high gear, five days before the most anticipated celebration of the year.

It’s interesting to note that on Nativity Day (another name for Christmas), December 25 at 12:06 a.m., a new moon will smile down from the sky with all its beauty and splendor for everyone to behold and admire.

It is said is a sign of fresh  start  or new beginnings of peace and prosperity.

Christmas Eve, which is Saturday, is one tradition most Filipino families celebrate.

As Dec. 24 dawns, the last Misa de Gallo, which started Dec. 16, is attended.

Then preparations start for Noche Buena, which is feast that takes place after midnight.

Also on the Eve of Christmas, church bells ring for Misa de Aguinaldo (gift Mass) to celebrate the Holy Nativity, the climax of Christmastide in the Philippines.

People attending Mass in their best attire.

Right after the midnight Mass what follows is Noche Buena, an open house celebration.

Friends, relatives and neighbors drop by to wish every family member Merry Christmas.

Food is in abundance, often in buffet style.

Standard fare served for a typical Noche Buena con-sists of lechon or roast pig, pansit, barbecue, rice, ado-bo, bread, queso de bola, cakes, fresh fruits of the season.

There is also an abundance of beer,wine and liquor.

Christmas Day is a popular day for children to visit their uncles, aunt, godmothers and godfathers.

At each home they are presented with usually candy, money and toys. Food and drinks are also offered each stop.

It is a day of family closeness, and everyone wishes good and glad tidings.

To my editors, fellow journalists, friends, Remate readers and bossman Benny Antiporda I wish you all Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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