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Rodney C Jubilado


Religion and language are distinctive marks of civilization and of human evolution. Almost every human society is marked by the universal presence of language and religion. While language aids in the propagation of religion, religion perpetuates language in return as manifested in bigger and older religions. Language serves as the avenue of religion towards the psyche of the society. This paper traces the religious development of the Philippine society which made the whole archipelago a member of the Catholic world. In the Philippines, the Catholic faith is the dominant religion introduced by the Spaniards in 1521. Its expansion in the archipelago is made possible by the missionaries from Spain and the converted members of major ethnicities from the other parts of the archipelago. In terms of indigenization, Catholicism in the Philippines is way ahead of the Second Vatican Council with the bestowment of the local vernacular the prestige reserved only for Latin, thus, the prayers and the liturgies are conducted in the local languages. It is in this account that this paper deals with the indigenization of Catholic prayers, in particular, to analyze the use of Latin and Cebuano prayers in the funeral wakes. Funeral wakes in the Catholic community include the recitation of the Novena for the Dead, a ritual which runs for nine days starting on the first night of the death of the Catholic faithful. This paper also attempts to present an analysis and discussion on the relationship between funeral prayers in particular the public prayers in relation to the coefficient of weirdness of BronislawMalinowski. The participants of this study include the three mananabtan‘prayer leaders’ and 30mananabat‘responsorial faithful’, who are chosen at random. All of the participants of this study are residents of the poblacion‘locale’ of the Second District ofSamal, Davao, Philippines.

Keywords: coefficient of weirdness, religion, language, Latin, Cebuano


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