ROUGH CUTS| Encounters with supernatural and ghosts

     COUNTRIES all over the world, specifically those that have predominantly Christian religions, commemorate two important events in the first two days of the month of November.

     We are referring to All Saints Day on November 1 and All Souls Day on November 2. These two Christian celebrations are actually interrelated. All Saints Day and All Souls Day are both Western originated Christian festivities. Also, while the former focuses on the Saints, most of those who are beatified have their name shakes among the dead.

     Inversely, the dead have also their name shakes among the saints. And when people troop to the cemetery to commune with their dearly departed they also pay homage to the saints.

   The two universally celebrated religious events however, are preceded by still another Western festivity that takes place on the last day of the month of October. This is the Halloween which, in AD 800, evolved from a New Year celebration to a festival of the dead.

 People once believed that ghosts roamed the earth on Halloween. And they also thought that all witches and other supernatural beings meet on October 31, the day before All Saints Day, to worship the devil.

     And while today most people do not believe in ghosts, it is undeniable that they are in agreement that these supernatural beings and ghosts are symbols of how deeply the Christian world gives relevance to both All Saints and All Souls Day commemoration.

     Personally though, we consider our self as one of the non-believers in ghosts, witches and other supposedly supernatural creations.

     However, we would and cannot deny that in so many instances, there were times that our imagination got the most of our boldness making us virtually in the tight rope of believing their existence.

   We have these two experiences that we would want to share with our readers for them to discern whether there is truth to what had happened or simply those were merely products of some people’s overly pregnant imagination. And perhaps too, they may have similar experiences that would allow them to relate with those that were told to us in this time of our communion with the saints and with our departed.

     Story 1:

     We are bringing you on a journey back in time of our life in Cebu during our high school days. We were then staying with the Missionary of the Sacred Heart (MSC) priests who were running the then lone Parish of the Virgin of the Rule in Lapulapu City, Cebu.

     We served as one of the altar boys who assist the priest during celebration of the Holy Mass even as we were studying at the Church-run high school. One week-end when we had the opportunity to visit our parents at home, our late father and mother pulled us to a corner of the house and talked to us as if sharing a deeply guarded secret.

     It was our late mother who told us that our father had been seeing a supernatural being locally called “kapri” who waits for him beside a huge banan tree along a secluded foot path leading to our house. Our father during that time was working at the carpentry shop of the Cebu-based shipping company Escano Lines, a sister firm of Visayan Electric Co. Since we lived in one of the two towns in Mactan island and his workplace was in Cebu City proper, he normally goes home and passes by that spot between 7 to 8 in the evening.

     After my mother opened up the topic with me my father confirmed her and added that the “kapri” was friendly and even wanted to give him some kind of supernatural powers. However, my father told me, that in exchange for the power was my sister whom the “kapri” liked.

     My father added that the “kapri” was so insistent to the point that from the old banan tree he would accompany him up to the vicinity of our house. Admittedly, our father was not a religious man during his life time.

     In that seemingly very serious conversation we could not help asking our parents how could we possibly help. I was then just a young high school student who was totally raw as to issues of courage and of possibly confronting the powers of a supernatural being.

     Our father however, said we could very well help him drive away his “kapri” stalker if we could produce a so-called “agnus,” a piece of cloth sewed like a micro pillow with its contents the blessed burned relics of saints.

     We immediately remembered many religious items vendors selling them near the church. But whether the “agnus” were blessed by a priest we have no idea then.

     So, we committed to our father that we will procure the item as soon as we go back to the convent and have this blessed by any one of the three priests we lived with. And that was what exactly we did.

     We went home again after less than a week purposely to give to our father the blessed “Agnus” which he immediately wore on his neck like a necklace.

     Our late father later told us that from that time on the “Kapri” still showed himself up to him but would not get near him seemingly afraid of something. Our father assumed that it was the “Agnus” that he was wearing which deterred the supernatural being from getting closed to him.

     After some time, our father told us, his stalker “kapri” eventually did not bother him anymore.

     Story 2:

     The house of the parents of our wife is a big single level bungalow. Our father-in-law died in 1988 and our wife’s mother died on December 7, 2010. Nobody lives in the house anymore because all the siblings of our wife are already married and have house of their own.

     However, even if the old house was abandoned, until now it is regularly maintained so its deterioration will not come fast. The power connection remains as well as its water outlets.

     One day in 2016 the family had a get-together to celebrate a birthday of one of its members. It was held in the house of the younger brother of our wife which is just some fifty meters away from the ancestral home.

     As the night wore on the boys, all cousins and a close friend who were playing a local card game called “piat-piat” decided to move to the old house because the rain started falling and they did not want to bother the house owner hosting the gathering.

     As usual, other than playing the card game the group brought with them a case of beer grande to serve as aperitif to the game.

     Our son who was with the group and the rest of the card players, told us upon his arrival at our house some 300 meters away, that they were forced to stop the game despite the increasing bets. They claimed that all of them heard some slow footsteps coming from the closed room of our parents-in-law moving towards the kitchen. They said this happened shortly before midnight. As each one of them looked at each other with unuttered questions in their mouths, a smell of burnt candle floated on the air. Not one, not two but all of them sniffed the smell. No one could have lighted a candle and said a novena that late hour of the night.

     Mustering enough courage, our son told us he asked forgiveness by saying, “Pasaylo-a mi Nanay sa pagsamok-samok namo sa imong balay. Sori nga gihimo namo ni nga sugalan ug imnanan.”

     Immediately, my son said, they closed the doors and windows of the house and got out almost running. They were all panting upon reaching our house.

     We have no doubt that our late father and our son and his companions told us the truth. We do not believe easily but knowing them and their relation to us we do not have any reason not to.

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