What Is St. Patrick's Day and Why Is It Also Celebrated in the Philippines?

Filipinos are also celebrating St. Patrick's Day.

Last year, the nationwide celebrations for St. Patrick’s Day in the Philippines got canceled because of the Pandemic. Bars were forced to close, liquor bans were implemented, and cities were put in lockdowns. 

This year, a semblance of normalcy is being brought about by virtual encounters and celebrations. 

What is St. Patrick’s Day? 

St. Patrick’s Day is a cultural and religious celebration that has been observed for centuries every March 17. It is the feast day of St. Patrick, a Christian missionary and  “Apostle of Ireland.” He is a venerated saint in the Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church. 

In modern times, the feast day is celebrated with festivities and a lot of drinking. In some countries and territories, it is a public holiday. The Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador, and the British Overseas Territory of Montserrat recognize St. Patrick’s Day as a formal holiday.

It is also widely celebrated in the U.S., U.K., Brazil, Argentina, Australia, and New Zealand, where there are significant populations of people of Irish heritage.

St. Patrick’s Day in Pop Culture

Photo by How I Met Your Mother.

In the episode titled “No Tomorrow” of How I Met Your Mother, Ted, Marshall and Lily decide to spend St. Patrick's Day holding a board game night at Marshall and Lily's new apartment, rather than drinking green beer with a green-suited Barney. Insulted, Barney proposes his theory of “No Tomorrow” in which anything they do today will have no consequences. Because of this, he convinces Ted to join him by promising him one of his dates.

Wearing green has also become a tradition during the holiday. On Saint Patrick's Day, it is customary to wear shamrocks, green clothing or green accessories. Saint Patrick is said to have used the shamrock, a three-leaved plant, to explain the Holy Trinity to the pagan Irish.

St. Patrick’s Day in the Philippines

The Philippines has been described as “a sort of Catholic Ireland located off the coastline of Asia." Irish missionaries have also been sent to the country in the 1920s, which explains how St. Patrick's Day has persisted, albeit to a lesser extent than other feast days, in the Philippines.  

Photo by Dharmesh Ajudiya / Shutterstock.
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This year, the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in the Philippines are being led by Irish whiskey brand JamesonOn March 13, 2021, Jameson and The Palace will host virtual St. Patrick’s Day festivities on Facebook. The party will feature the hottest local acts DJ Ron Poe, Curtismith, August Wahh, Tala, Super Mikki, Leanne and Naara, and Marga on the Mic, allowing you to join in and vibe right in your room—or wherever you might be—while you sip on a glass of your favorite Irish whiskey, mixed however you like.

Also as part of the celebration Jameson has partnered with local brands Don’t Blame The Kids (DBTK) and Vamos, who’ve come up with exclusive limited-edition Jameson St. Patrick’s Day merch. And speaking of limited-edition merch, Jameson’s also tapped local artist Jap Mikel to create a box design just for St. Patrick’s Day called “Twilight City,” which depicts the best parts of life in Manila.


“I wanted to show the city’s landmarks in my design. It’s a mix of the East and the West, as well as the blend of history, folklore, and modern life,” said Mikel.

Limited-Edition Box

“Last year might have been hard on us, but this year we’re going to take our tradition back for ourselves and celebrate the things we can celebrate this St. Patrick’s Day,” said Frances Favila, Jameson Brand Manager. “So wherever you are, join in on the fun of our online St. Patrick’s Day party with a glass of Jameson Irish Whiskey.”

You can get Jap Mikel’s limited-edition St. Patrick’s Day box design when you buy a bottle of Jameson Irish Whiskey at Boozy and in major supermarkets. 


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About The Author
Mario Alvaro Limos
Features Editor-at-Large
Mario Alvaro Limos is features editor-at-large at Esquire Philippines, and heads the Lifestyle and Esports content of SPIN.ph as its section editor. Email him at [email protected] and [email protected]
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