After the successful virtual lighting of its iconic annual giant Christmas tree, Araneta City continuous its Christmas celebration with a virtual ceremony for its traditional Belen lighting on November 27.
Araneta City’s life-size Belen – which depicts the Holy Family and ushers the City’s holiday celebration – is constructed and lighted along Gen. MacArthur Avenue since 1991. For this year, however, the traditional live solemn ceremony for the Belen lighting was done virtually due to restrictions brought by the pandemic.
In the virtual program, Monsignor Jun Bugaoan of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Brgy Socorro Parish led the blessing of the Belen. A short peaceful offering of prayers was attended and witnessed onsite by some Araneta City executives and employees, business owners, vendors, and Farmers Market. Stringent social distancing measures and health protocols were enforced to secure the safety of the attendees.
“The Belen lighting is one of the much-awaited Christmas events here in Araneta City. We want to continue with this tradition despite our current circumstances as our way of making the whole City of Firsts community feel the spirit of the season,” according to Marjorie Go, AVP for Marketing of Araneta City.
Despite conducting the lighting ceremony virtually, the Belen will be open to the public until the end of the year.
This year’s Belen lighting at Araneta City coincides with the opening of Christmas bazaars at the Gateway Mall, Ali Mall, and Farmers Plaza, which offer a wide range of Christmas gifts and items suited for any preference and any budget.
Other exciting Christmas highlights at the City of Firsts include the Parolan Christmas bazaar, which offers quality and affordable Christmas decors until December 31; the giant Christmas tree at the Times Square Food Park and other huge Christmas trees inside the Araneta City malls; and the ongoing Joyful Treats at the City of Firsts promo where diners and shoppers have a chance to win cool Christmas prizes. Come December, Araneta City will have a Santa Claus meet-and-greet, colorful fireworks display, and virtual choral performances.