Oh, The Horror?

Posted on October 20, 2011 by

As we all know, this month has a very controversial day known to Christians: Halloween.

Over the years I’ve come across Christians of all denominations whose views range when it comes to Halloween. Is it okay? Is partaking in the fun and celebration of the day okay? If it’s not appropriate for Christians, then why?

I was once told by a pastor that Halloween is the day the most animal sacrifices occur as reported by authorities. When I asked him if he could provide me with a source or two, his response was filled with disdain as if I was an unworthy or untrue Christian. In fact, that was the first time in my life that I had heard about animal sacrifices on the same day as Halloween. I’ve heard (and seen) plenty of egging and toilet paper, so it seemed to be a far stretch to me. It’s probably a legitimate concern as Satan worshipers DO exist. If Christians celebrate Halloween, are they guilty by association?

Many churches have “Harvest Parties” in lieu of Halloween, to take the children away from anything Halloween related. I’ve been told that Halloween has pagan sources, has evil sources, is a form of Satan-worship, etc. I understand that many of these concerns stem from true reasons that everyone should be concerned about. Evil is real and can manifest itself in the most surprising ways. Does that necessarily mean carving out a pumpkin into a silly face and handing out candy are sinful acts to begin with?

When it comes to Catholicism, what I understand is that we observe “All Saints Day,” which is the day after Halloween. I understood this as it was okay to celebrate Halloween, since it was not supposed to be a scary, evil day, but a day to poke fun of evil that the Saints triumphed over. Yet, the perspectives I’ve seen from Catholicism are just as varied as those from Protestant sources– they range from “Halloween should be used to make fun of evil and to not be afraid,” to “Halloween is evil and if you are a true Catholic you would NOT do anything with it.”

Here is my take on it:

With everything comes moderation and a large healthy dose of sensibility. At Alte’s old blog we had discussed what would be appropriate limits for a husband to set on his wife, and the topic of reading too many vampire books came up. I think a similar approach is appropriate with Halloween celebration– if you know or know someone else who indulges in Halloween a bit too much, it might be time to scale back or discontinue any celebration for a while.

What’s scaling back and what’s extreme? Anything having to do with using occult tools is crossing the line, big time. I don’t care if Ouija boards are made by Hasbro, after watching Paranormal Activity those things scare the crap out of me!

Divination, ghost-hunting, and seances are crossing the spiritual line. But then again here I am being a hypocrite since when I was in my early 20’s I attempted to go ghost-hunting with a friend. We did not take it seriously while he ranted around the woods proclaiming that any ghost that did exist would be offended anyway, since he did not believe they existed. LOL.

I think celebrating Halloween as a fanciful day by carving out pumpkins, handing out candy, and helping kids dress up as cute animals, superheros, ballerinas, and even Saints is appropriate. The sexy costumes are interesting to say the least, but hey whatever floats your boat at the adults-only party. I think it’s wise to avoid and be wary of the aspects that are darker and can be the segue into the occult and place your spiritual life in danger.

I’d apply it the same way as I would with someone who is a recovering alcoholic. If the alcohol consumption will lead to negative consequences, it’s probably best to do without it completely. For many recovering alcoholics, even a small drink can send them back to square one. If you’re a person who’s dabbled in the occult before in a manner that was too far and not celebrating anything with Halloween is best for your spiritual life, then it might be the best course of action. I understand that some people are capable of setting healthy limits, while some are not and need extra guidance.

Can Christians sensibly indulge in Halloween without crossing the line? Or is it a solid “no”?

Personally I miss living in a house because I can’t hand out candy. Those little kids in their pumpkin costumes were awfully cute.

Posted in: Homemaking, Religion