Home Sweet Home: "Parol" A Christmas Lantern Story


My son Roel staring at the "parol" hanging by our porch 

 A "Parol" hanging outside homes signals the start of the Christmas season in the Philippines. It is the ornament counterpart of the Christmas tree. Apparently the Spanish culture brought "parol" (farol in Spanish, meaning lantern) in the country as Christianity was spread across the nation. It symbolizes the star of Bethlehem which guided the three Kings to baby Jesus' location. A "parol" serves as a reminder of The story of the Birth of Jesus Christ on a manger clothed with humility and compassion for all of humanity.

As a child I remember staring at colorful "parols" and feeling the spirit of giving. I marveled at the shimmering covering of the 5 cornered bamboo craft and found magic in cutting multi-colored Japanese paper to turn into "parol" tails.

In this modern age where so many sophisticated Christmas decorations are available, the child in me still loves most the simple "parol" that symbolizes hope and faith in the heart of my countrymen.


May everyone find peace and joy not just on Christmas season but forever...



Info source: Wikipedia 

11 comments

  1. used to make this when i was young and had too much fun, lovely photos Zen

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  2. the closest "parol" i can get here is a modernize version of Ikea start lantern. i still love Christmas in the Philippines best. waaaaaa, it's been a year... huhuhu! i miss you and Beth. i miss my fambam. i miss Pinas!!!

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  3. I miss Christmas back home. I miss all those pretty lanterns, the bibingka sold in the church ground, the cool breeze in the morning, most especially, spending Christmas with your family and friends.

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  4. I always make sure that we have the Parol every Yuletide season, it does not matter if we don't put up a tree just as long as the Parol is hanging out there :)

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  5. The simple parol is what I miss the most because my father would make that and me and my siblings would cover it with art paper, hay nakakamiss lang.

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  6. Parol is truly an indication that Christmas in the Pinas is way different than other countries, I always missed and wished that we are in the Phils during December for we would like the way we traditionally celebrate the Birth of Christ together with our simple and yet memorable celebration.

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  7. Ah, this parol reminded me of my childhood days, when pinuputol namin ang pinong kawayan ng kapitbahay namin..lol

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  8. The real symbol of Pinoy Christmas. Now, you just gave me an idea. This is the first time in 13 years (since I got married to a Jewish guy) that I will be decorating our home for the Holidays. Problem is... where can I source a parol here at the frozen tundra (lol).

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  9. Filipinos ingenuity is showcased in every "parol" hanged in their very own homes. I think there's nothing like it in the world. Onli in da Pilipins :-)

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  10. I missed celebrating Christmas in the Philippines :-( It has been 11 years since the last time I spent my Christmas. I love all the Christmas decorations especially the parol. I missed the park and going to church at dawn :-( How I wish that someday I could bring my kids and experience how is Christmas is celebrated in a simple but memorable way :-)

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  11. I miss the star-shaped parol. I seldom see that kind of parol. My father used to make that.

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