All Saints’ Day is a holiday in the Central African Republic every 1 November. On this day, Christian believers remember known and unknown saints of past centuries. All Saints’ Day is a significant occasion on the traditional Christian calendar, and is observed by millions of Christians around the world.
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The day before, All Saints’ Eve on 31 October, and the day after, All Souls Day on 2 November, are also often celebrated. These are primarily but not exclusively Roman Catholic holidays. About 80 percent of CAR is Christian, with about 50 percent being Protestant and 30 percent Catholic. Thus, All Saints’ Day is of importance to many but not all in CAR.
What do people do on All Saints’ Day? First of all, they try to remember and honour the various canonised saints or notable men and women of faith who have lived throughout church history. Catholics who celebrate All Saints’ Day may pray to these saints for help, while Protestants observing the day would just honour their memory and seek to emulate their example.
Some families may have special gatherings and meals on All Saints’ Day. Most will take time to remember family members and friends who have passed away and place flowers on or near their tomb.
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