April 4, 2022
GEORGETOWN – Before the pandemic struck, visiting her grandfather’s grave during Qing Ming had been an annual affair for materials engineer Khaw Chin Ting.
Khaw, 29, whose mother also passed away last year, said her family came to visit their grandfather’s grave as they were unable to do so for the past two years.
“Usually, we head out for breakfast together after we visit his grave but now, as there are too many of us, we will skip it.
“I am here with my siblings, my mother’s brother and sister, and my cousins,” she said when met at the cemetery in Paya Terubong yesterday.
Khaw said it was good to be able to visit her maternal grandfather’s grave although it was different this time as her mother had also passed away.
“We brought some prayer paraphernalia, fruits, dim sum and other dishes that he liked. My aunt brought him a sub sandwich because it was something he enjoyed eating as well,” she said.
Khaw added that she and her family would be visiting her mother’s grave on Tuesday, the actual day of Qing Ming (Tomb Sweeping Day or Ancestors Day).
“For the first three years after someone has passed away, you must visit them on the actual Qing Ming date,” she explained.
With the Qing Ming festival permitted this year after a two-year hiatus, many cemeteries and columbariums were packed with families waiting to perform rituals for their loved ones who had passed on.
This year’s Qing Ming falls on April 5, but the tomb-sweeping rituals can be performed two weeks before or after the actual date.
The festival, part of a tradition that has been observed for over 2,500 years, involves family members gathering to pay their respects and homage to the departed.