Filipino parols are so symbolic of the Filipino Christmas season. It’s the star that shines brightly for the world to see that Jesus our savior was born. A Filipino parol shines in every ones house to celebrate the season of sharing, giving, peace and love. Filipino Christmas parols are so unique and for us Filipinos, easily recognizable as the symbol of our faith and our culture.
Another symbol of our faith is the belen. It’s another thing that we had in our house when we were growing up during the Christmas season. It’s not so much a big focus here in the US, but I do remember that it to be a prominent fixture in our Christmas decorations. A belen is a nativity scene and the most basic version you can find is one with a manger, Mary, Joseph, the baby Jesus and the angel. It can get pretty massive from there if you were to include the Three Kings, the sheep, donkeys and the rest of the animals. We had a table top version with the Three Kings and some donkeys. I remember our neighbor in the Philippines had a really large one on their lawn with a large parol for star (the star that led the Three Kings to the manger).
I have a belen at home with just the basics. Each year I plan to add to it a bit at a time. I made sure to get the non-breakable kind because my kids love to play with the little baby Jesus in the manger. I wanted to make sure this belen can last me a long time and the non-breakable ones are my best bet for now.