Every year but this one, Filipinos across the country converge upon the cemeteries. This is a special time when they clean the graves of their loved ones, light candles, and request the local priest to pray for the removal of sins of their loved ones in purgatory. To the Filipino, this holiday (known as All Soul’s Eve and All Saint’s Day) is a family reunion. Many will travel great distances, prepare food, and have a picnic on the grave of their loved ones. A plate will even be prepared for the souls of the deceased. No words can truly express this event. It is a time of joy and sorrow mingled together.
However, due to the Covid situation here in the Philippines, all cemeteries throughout the country have been closed today and will remain closed for seven days. This has been done to prevent large gatherings with the hopes that the Covid situation will not spread even more than it already has.
Please pray that the closure of the cemeteries will open the hearts of those around us to the Gospel Message. Those in our village already know that Jesus died on the cross, but they don’t know that they must choose to believe in Him alone while they still have breath in their lungs. Many in our village have a false confidence that when they die, others will pray for their souls to be released from purgatory. We so desire that they have a confidence now that their sins are forgiven, not in part, but in whole because of faith in Jesus alone.