The ofrenda is an offering or shrine built to honor the deceased for the Day of the Dead.

Courtesy Kathy Kitagawa

El Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is an event celebrated in many Latin American countries, particularly Mexico. The Day of the Dead is a time to remember and honor the deceased and is usually characterized by ofrendas — shrines or altars constructed to present offerings to the spirits.

Since Dia de los Muertos is considered to be a celebration of eternal life rather than a sad event, ofrendas usually reflect whimsical portrayals of the dead as they were when they were living.

St. Philip’s in the Hills Episcopal Church invites people to remember their departed loved ones by contributing to an ofrenda that will be in the Columbarium Garden through Nov. 3.

Photographs, meaningful objects and memorabilia are all suitable offerings. Objects may be placed on the ofrenda any time the office is open (8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays).

The ofrenda will be used in conjunction with St. Philip’s All Souls’ Day memorial service. On Nov. 2, the church will celebrate All Souls’ Day with a special Memorial Eucharist at 7 p.m.

Particular attention will be given to remembering those who have died within the past two years, but participants will celebrate all who have died.

Families may remember their loved ones by lighting one of the votive candles found outside the church door before the service and placing it on the altar. The service concludes with a candlelit procession into the Columbarium Garden for prayers around the ofrenda shrine. Afterwards, the celebration of life continues with a festive reception.

St. Philip’s is at 4440 N. Campbell Ave. at East River Road. Parking is available in the north parking lot or under the solar covered parking structure on the east side.

The Columbarium Garden is to the west of the main church building. For more information, call Stella Lopez at 299-6421.