This Article was mentioned by Dr. Colleen Mast on Relevant Radio & Appeared in “This Rock” and “Immaculata” Magazines.
Interesting. Does anyone have any information on how to make up our own holy cards about how Halloween came to be?
Halloween is not as prominent in New Zealand, although it is getting more attention every year. My children are grown now but if they were little I would make a big thing of All Saints’ Eve rather than Halloween.
Some of our parishes have had parties where children got to dress up as their favourite saint. My boss, not a Catholic (yet - I’m working on it) had developed an international alternative to Halloween called Light Party (www.lightparty.org)).
Sort of like when our ancestors claimed ancient pagan feast days and turned them into Christian Feastdays, with a religious emphasis. I guess Satan thought that was a good idea and reversed it.
Just saw this:
The Diocesan Commission on Occult and Satanism in Malta says that Halloween is a feast of pagan origin.and believes that “whoever wishes to take seriously his Christian faith should not celebrate Halloween.”
Read in context, they are warning against the secular and modern practice of Halloween. You need to read this post if you are going to start trashing things that are pagan in origin!!! All Hallow’s Eve is not the only thing that would go - even priestly vestments are pagan in origin.
Remember, truth exists even where faith does not. Pagans can find truth and the truths they found can and have been married to Catholic Truth. The Church allowed this possibility to the Saints, who converted many pagan people by showing them where they had already found truth. The Saints would adopt those lesser truths, marry the lesser truth to correct Catholic teachings, and then bring the people into the Fullness of the Faith. You need only fear the pagan origin of a Catholic custom or practice if the error previously associated with it carried over into Catholicism.
Halloween IS All Hallow’s Eve - look in a dictionary of Etymology. The Celts didn’t celebrate "Halloween."
Another article on Catholic Halloween:
I read the Halloween information on that Light Party site and they are wrong about All Saints Day. All Hallow’s Eve was always celebrated right along with All Saints Day, too - it just didn’t fall on Oct.31 for the whole church until the 9th century when the universal feast day was moved to Nov. 1.
From the Catholic Encyclopedia:
In the early days the Christians were accustomed to solemnize the anniversary of a martyr’s death for Christ at the place of martyrdom. In the fourth century, neighbouring dioceses began to interchange feasts, to transfer relics, to divide them, and to join in a common feast; as is shown by the invitation of St. Basil of Caesarea (397) to the bishops of the province of Pontus. Frequently groups of martyrs suffered on the same day, which naturally led to a joint commemoration. In the persecution of Diocletian the number of martyrs became so great that a separate day could not be assigned to each. But the Church, feeling that every martyr should be venerated, appointed a common day for all. The first trace of this we find in Antioch on the Sunday after Pentecost. We also find mention of a common day in a sermon of St. Ephrem the Syrian (373), and in the 74th homily of St. John Chrysostom (407). At first only martyrs and St. John the Baptist were honoured by a special day. Other saints were added gradually, and increased in number when a regular process of canonization was established; still, as early as 411 there is in the Chaldean Calendar a “Commemoratio Confessorum” for the Friday after Easter. In the West Boniface IV, 13 May, 609, or 610, consecrated the Pantheon in Rome to the Blessed Virgin and all the martyrs, ordering an anniversary. Gregory III (731-741) consecrated a chapel in the Basilica of St. Peter to all the saints and fixed the anniversary for 1 November. A basilica of the Apostles already existed in Rome, and its dedication was annually remembered on 1 May. Gregory IV (827-844) extended the celebration on 1 November to the entire Church. The vigil seems to have been held as early as the feast itself. The octave was added by Sixtus IV (1471-84).
Just today I saw in the newspaper a picture of a young girl with red paint splattered on her blouse resembling gunshot wounds, The girl was reported as saying that this was going to be her Halloween get up.
I was reflecting on this because in the past there have appeared on our doorsteps during Halloween teenagers wearing what looks like some sort of bloody garb and face made up in ditto fashion. I thought by myself, in view of the subject post and the fact that some young people are fascinated with the gory part of blood, what would happen if someone would decide to dress up like Jesus, in a dark red cloak, face all bloodied from a crown of thorns placed on the head, with a wood stick in his hand, as mock scepter. In my mind I see this person just standing there in the background of a group of kids, silently, but looking focused. I wonder what kind of reaction such a dressed-up person might get. Would there be a report and picture in the newspaper then? and what would the caption read? I can only guess.
[quote=PLAL]This Article was mentioned by Dr. Colleen Mast on Relevant Radio & Appeared in “This Rock” and “Immaculata” Magazines.
A thousand thanks for this article!! I, too, give out holy things
like stickers or bracelets. My little piece of paper says
have a happy and holy halloween. I like the ideas here and
I’m happy I’m not the only Catholic who believes this way.
GO Colleen!!! I’m with ya!!
In my church Halloween is celebrated as Reformation Day!
Bring on the jokes!
26 hours and counting… still no jokes… disappointed??
I guess we don’t consider the Reformation a joke.
It was a sad divorce in our history… yet while nearly 8 million in Europe left the Catholic Church, 8 million + came into the Church as a result of what happened at Guadalupe.
God is good.
OK, I was joking.
I was hoping that maybe a few good chuckles at my expense would be funny. Now I can see otherwise; gravity reigns.
Thank you for your post, but I don’t think the Reformation was a joke either. Nor is it ever a joke when the leaders of God’s people enforce error and heresy for the sake of their own comfort. But God is good, as you have said, and he has allowed the truth the march onward despite its worldly enemies. May the faith established by Christ continue to be proclaimed in the world until He comes again. I know that it will.
“This world’s prince may still
Scowl fierce as he will;
He can harm us none.
He’s judged - the deed is done.
The kingdom’s ours forever.”
Your welcome! This is a great article. I hope everyone reads it yet again this year with Halloween coming up.
From inforumblog.com/ on 9-28-06.
More On Halloween
No, that’s not a typo. Go back to the origins of this event and you’ll find that it started as (and still is) a Christian holiday. One of Helen Hull Hitchcock’s friends shared some of her concerns over what the event was turning into, and how to plan her children’s celebration of it.
Her concern was real — and considering some of the adult Hallowe’en street celebrations in recent years, anyone would think this is a deeply pagan festivity. (The same might be said of Mardi Gras celebrations!) Add to that the fact that some people today actually claim to be witches. They have claimed “ownership” of Hallowe’en. They claim it is really an ancient pagan harvest festival.
When the culture grabs onto something like this and buys into the advertising and merchandising hype about it, folks just start believing this weird stuff. And then they get caught up in the pop culture (the ‘cult’ of the event) and go with some celebrations they don’t even question.
What about this? Can even innocent children’s parties, trick-or-treating, dressing up like witches and ghosts on October 31 — as almost all Americans have done for generations — be participating in a pagan religious celebration? Worse, is it a way of seducing our kids into the occult or devil worship?
Are we compromising our religious beliefs and principles by letting our children, even if innocently, dabble in something that has its origins in evil? As Catholic families, what is our obligation to be consistent and true to our faith?
Women for Faith & Family has all kinds of resources and background on matters of faith and morals. They provide an alternative to the pop culture’s view on those matters.
We think that Hallowe’en can be a real teaching moment. Despite what many people think — or what some modern-day “witches” may claim — Hallowe’en is and has always been a Christian holiday.
It’s still a month away. And yet is here now, everywhere you shop (and some places you dine and go for entertainment). So it’s time to consider what’s going on with Hallowe’en. It’s a popular holiday. There will be more here on it through October.
For more information in October … inforumblog.com/
Our homeschooled daughter goes takes classes once a week through our mostly protestant homeschool group. She had just got her costume for this year the day before her classes. When I went to pick her up my daughter said sadly “Mom, most of my friends here don’t celebrate Halloween. One girl in my class said her mom said Satan uses Halloween to trick us into thinking it’s just about candy and dressing up.” She looked really sad and I could tell she felt like somewhat ashamed in front of some of the other kids.
We talked in the car on the way about all souls day and I said while parents have the right to teach their kids what they believe she didn’t need to feel bad or think she was doing something wrong. I think some people see evil in everything, a mom in my mother’s group years back wouldn’t let her children watch the cartoon dragontales on PBS because it had “incantations.”:rolleyes:
Does anyone have ideas about how we can cut down on the greed of trick-or-treating? I can’t stand how Halloween is so commercial and materialistic. It’s just getting far too far from its origins! The idea of my son absolutely gorging himself on his lootings is not appealing to me at all
My MIL celebrated Halloween 16 years ago by giving birth to my husband’s youngest sister. Now *that’s *a cool thing to do on Halloween
Generally, here in the UK, Halloween has become materialistic, violent and terrifying.
We have to some extent, adopted the US tradition of trick or treating. However, if you, as a householder do not cough up money or whatever to intimidating young hooligans, you are likely to have your house or car damaged. Sales of flour and eggs shoot up in the days before halloween, and on 1 november the streets are usually a sticky mess. Many elderly people live in absolute terror of it. It has become an excuse for mass vandalism, bullying and terror. Adult parties are usually bawdy and just plain scary.
A friend and I started running our own saint-orientated alternative. The main reason we do this, I admit, is to get out of our house before the madness starts. We cook some hotdogs, bob for apples, play some games, have a saints quiz, and do some crafts.
We have an All Saints Day party every year! This year it’s at my house.
The kids dress up as saints. We have a saint parade. The kids give us clues and we try to guess what saint they are. The older kids have fun finding obscure saints.
The younger kids go for the “glamour” saints. There’s a lot of St. Elizabeths (princesses, one and all), and St. Michaels (swords and all). One of my favorite saint costumes was St. Lucy. She carried two ping pong balls painted like eyeballs on a plate.
We’ll give out a bag of candy. We’ll play games like toss the halo.
We also try very hard to get to a cemetary on All souls day to pray.
My kids sometimes wish they could dress up in other costumes, so we have had costume parties for birthdays.
However, I asked a priest about celebrating Halloween and he said it was all in the intent.
However, if you celebrate the secular holiday of trick or treating, try to also celebrate the saints in some way. Our children need to know that they have the Church Triumphant to do spiritual battle for them. And, they need these heroes.
I love the idea of taking back Halloween. My daughter is only two, so we are just beginning to form our Halloween traditions. After reading this article I got an idea for our Holiday tree. I have a vase with branches arranged in it. During most the year it just looks like a bare branches in a vase, but during Advent we hang these little cut our ornaments that have a bible verse of mostly old testament stories that prefigure the story of Jesus. And of course on Christmas Day the last ornament is the Nativity. During Easter we have decorated eggs hanging from the branches, and after reading this article I got the idea to hang holy cards with silk Autumn leaves on it. I’m thinking we’ll hang one holy card & say the prayer each day until All Saint’s Day, and then hang pictures of our departed loved ones on All Soul’s Day. It looks beautiful right now! I like the idea of giving out something religious in nature for Halloween, but I know candy better be involved somehow! Any ideas for easy way to add a religious message to store bought candy?