Christmas in the Philippines

[REFLECTIONS] Hawak lang!

Word and Life Publications

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[REFLECTIONS] Hawak lang!

Passengers packed a jeepney traveling along the South Road of Cebu on November 16, 2021. President Rodrigo Duterte in his late Monday night talk to the people called on local government units to pass ordinances restricting unvaccinated minors to roam around public places. Meanwhile PUVs were allowed 70 percent sitting capacity and the non-wearing of face shields in public places for areas below Alert Level 3. Ruy L. Martinez/Rappler

Rappler.com

3rd day of Simbang Gabi: We have an encouraging piece of counsel to one another during such rough times: 'Hawak lang ‘tol!' This phrase is the shorter version of what Filipinos say in difficult times: 'Pasasaan ba’t matatapos din ang lahat?'

(This series of reflections is courtesy of Word and Life Publications, publisher of ‘Patnubay sa Misa’ at ‘Euchalette.’ Rappler is sharing these reflections for those preparing for Christmas.)

Jeremiah 23:5-8; Matthew 1:18-25

Many of us Filipinos know this by direct experience. Most of us have had the experience of holding on to the back of a jeepney or bus when there is absolutely no seat to spare. We have a word for it . . . sabit. With “sabit” we forget about safety and focus on the destination. When we know what to aim for, and the goal is more important than the wherefore, we just hold on, grit our teeth and move on, by any means possible.

We have an encouraging piece of counsel to one another during such rough times: “Hawak lang ‘tol!” This phrase is the millennial and postmodern shorter version of what Filipinos of yore told one another on similar difficult times: “Pasasaan ba’t matatapos din ang lahat?”

We Filipinos are a hopeful people. Behind all the world-famous smiles that we show the world, despite the floods, in spite of the many tragedies from natural and other man-made calamities we have faced, is not just an immature couldn’t-care-less attitude, but one born of human hope and the firm conviction that things will eventually turn out for the good.

Hawak lang, mga ‘tol! The readings today tell us precisely that: “Justice shall flourish in his time, and fullness of peace forever!”

– Word and Life Publications/Rappler.com

This reflection is part of the Euchalette, which can be downloaded for free at the Word and Life Publications site.

Here are more reflections and stories about Christmas in the Philippines

SCHEDULE: Simbang Gabi, Misa de Gallo 2023 sa mga mall at iba pang pasyalan

SCHEDULE: Simbang Gabi, Misa de Gallo 2023 sa mga mall at iba pang pasyalan

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