These crazy Filipino Holy Week superstitions will leave you #shookt

Photo credit: Balay PH

Since most Filipinos are Catholics, Holy Week is pretty big in the Philippines. However, while most people observe religious traditions such as Visita Iglesia and pabasa, others go beyond the norm and follow various superstitions. Here are some of the crazy Filipino Holy Week beliefs that will leave you #shookt.

You’ll turn into stone if you take a bath after 3 p.m. on Good Friday

Photo credit: Lyndon Speaks

I don’t know about you, but my late grandmother used to tell me that on Good Friday, I need to take a bath early, before Jesus Christ’s death at 3 p.m. According to her, anyone who takes a bath or swim once Christ is dead–which is after 3 p.m.–will turn into stone. I’m not sure if I was just too gullible as a kid or if I trusted my grandmother too much, but I took her words to heart. That’s why when I passed by a public beach in the province after 3 p.m. on a Good Friday years ago and saw a bunch of people swimming, I was seriously worried about them, actually thinking that they’ll literally turn into stone. (P.S. I miss you, Lola.)

You’re not supposed to watch TV during Holy Week

Old folks say that we’re not supposed to enjoy during Holy Week. This doesn’t seem as crazy as the first one (nothing beats my grandma’s bluff!) because you’re supposed to sacrifice certain things during Holy Week. However, others go to great lengths such as prohibiting kids from watching TV, playing outside, and basically creating noise during the Holy Week. It’s supposed to be a week of reflection after all.

Wounds acquired during Holy Week take longer to heal

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Again, according to superstitions, you should be extra careful during Holy Week because wounds take longer to heal during this time. This is apparently because evil spirits tend to get stronger because of Christ’s suffering and death.

Palm leaves on your door drive the evil spirits away

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After Palm Sunday, it’s a common practice for Filipino Catholics to bring home their palm leaves (palaspas). According to superstitions, leaving them on your door gives you protection from evil spirits as Holy Week starts.




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content editor on weekdays, traveler on most weekends

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