I don't recall whether Apo Dios refers to God or to the sun. Maybe I didn't ever know.
Ilocano was the parents primary language. I understood Ilocano but couldn't wrap my Americanized tongue around Ilocano words to speak it. So, yeah, we were one of those families in which immigrant parents talked to their American-born children in their native language and the children responded in English. Think of interpreters translating in real time.
The term Apo Dios is a combination of two languages. Apo in Ilocano means father or grandfather. So, I've always thought. An online Ilocano-English dictionary says otherwise. It says Apo means God. Dios is a Spanish word that means God. Spain colonized the Philippines for over 300 years so of course Spanish is going to seep into the native languages there. That same Ilocano-English dictionary defines Apo Dios as God.
Usually, my parents addressed Dios when life was going fine, such as "Hi, God, how are you doing? We're doing well, thank you very much." But for grave matters, they called to Apo Dios, such as "Oh Dear God, I beg your help that all goes well." When the Mama prayed to Apo Dios, she looked up into the sky and, if she happened to be outdoors, she faced the sun.
I may be remembering this wrong, but I think that the Mama also referred to the sun as Apo Dios. The dictionary says that the Ilocano word for sun is innit. But that word to me means the heat of the sun in the context of "Damn, the sun is hot today."
What I ought to do is learn about the spiritual beliefs of Northern Luzon before the Spanish royalty decided the Philippine Islands belonged to them way back in the 16th century. But, I probably won't.
Today begins the 24th round of ABC Wednesday. Whoo-hooo! Maybe this round I'll be able to get through all the letters. Check out the meme here and the letter A participants here. Thanks, ABCW team!