9:57:00 AM
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I am excited because starting today, after midnight, the church bells will be ringing again in glorious rhyme. Reminding us that the mass will begin in just an hour, thirty or in fifteen more minutes.

Simbang Gabi, Filipino words laterally means Mass of the Rooster, Midnight Mass, Misa de Gallo, and Misa de Aguinaldo, is composed of nine dawn masses before the celebration of Christmas Day, usually starts at 4:00 - 5:00 in the morning every the 16th through 24th of December.

Simbang Gabi is a religious tradition in the Philippines, mostly celebrated by Roman Catholics in preparation of the birth of Jesus Christ and the novena for the Virgin Mary. Christmas in the country is also considered as the longest and the most famous Philippine tradition.

Often associated, folks believe that the wishes of those who complete all the dawn masses will then be granted.

Also, as festive tradition, it's time where Filipino delicacies like puto bumbong (purple rice pastry with sugar and grated coconut meat), bibingka (flour egg cakes), and hot chocolate or salabat (hot ginger tea) are sold, either side of the church.

Getting out of bed so early for the dawn mass is indeed hard but completing the tradition is really a fullfilling part, by way it's our responsibility and sacrifice as a Christian.

Photo credits

8 comments:

  1. Interesting question there at the end... Hmm.. I have no idea if people do this in other countries as well!

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  2. last year, nakumpleto ko yung Simbang Gabi, ngayon, hindi ko lang alam. Hopefully kayanin kong bumangon ng napakaaga...

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  3. @reyjr: I think it is also celebrated in the different regions and or of Spanish countries because we inherited the tradition, Misa de Gallo, from them. But the celebration here in the Philippines is the best, agree? Undoubtedly perfect.

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  4. @fjordz: Good for you, galing, and you should attend this year.

    Last year, I attended the dawn mass(es) twice but not lucky enough to complete all nine mornings because I was busy that time working on my thesis. Now that I'm free with my obligations and responsibilities, I will complete all of them.

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  5. Here in our town, Simbang Gabi starts at 8:00pm to 9:pm so we're lucky that we can easily complete the 10 masses. :)

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  6. @Kelvin: Good for you. Evening mass here only on Christmas day. I'm wakeful and full this month again. Trying to complete all the mass. zZ

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  7. One of the things that is special to me at Christmas, when we're home, is to go to the candlelight service or midnight mass (I'm not Catholic, but my grandfather was). It brings a quiet sense of peace.

    I hope that your Christmas was wonderful, and that you got to spend lots of happy times with your family.

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  8. I love Christmas! It’s really one of the best times every year that we look forward to. Though dad was not with us this year again, we still had a great time and wonderful celebration of Christ's birth. :D

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