How to celebrate Halloween as a Christian.

How to celebrate Halloween as a Christian.

It might depend on their pastor, according to a survey, released Tuesday (Oct. 18), by Lifeway Research of Protestant Christian pastors from all across the United States.

More than 90% of pastors encourage their congregations to observe Oct. 31 in a particular way, ranging from avoiding Halloween completely to inviting people to Halloween-adjacent events at their churches, the survey found.

“Few pastors simply ignore the fact that so many Americans participate in Halloween celebrations,” Lifeway Research Executive Director Scott McConnell said in a written statement. “Most pastors focus on the social nature of these celebrations, encouraging their congregations to engage with others outside their church.”

Many children across the U.S. celebrate Halloween by dressing in costumes and walking door to door to neighbors’ houses requesting candy with a cheerful, “Trick or treat!” Carving pumpkins into jack-o’-lanterns, watching horror films, and visiting haunted houses are other popular pastimes during the spooky season.

Some pastors (13%) discourage their congregations from participating in the holiday in any way, according to the survey. This could be because some Christians consider the day’s festivities to be evil — or, at least, to glorify evil.

But a growing number of pastors are encouraging their congregations to engage with the celebration, primarily by inviting their friends and neighbors to church events on and around Halloween. Those events can include fall festivals; “trunk or treat” gatherings that allow kids to collect candy from cars parked in the church parking lot; or judgment houses, also known as hell houses, that aim to scare the hell out of visitors by depicting its horrors.

 

 

How to celebrate Halloween as a Christian.

what does the Bible say about Halloween?

It says virtually nothing about the actual word “Halloween.”  However, we need to get a clear understanding of what Halloween means. Halloween (a shortening of All Hallows’ Evening), also known as Hallowe’en or All Hallows’ Eve, is a yearly holiday observed around the world on October 31, the night before All Saints’ Day.

Much like Day of the Dead celebrations, the Christian feast of All Hallows’ Eve, according to some scholars, incorporates traditions from pagan harvest festivals and festivals honoring the dead, particularly the Celtic Samhain; other scholars maintain that the feast originated entirely independently of Samhain. –Pulled from Wikipedia-

The word broken down means or is saying ‘hallowed evening’ or ‘holy evening.  If you are puzzled as I was when I first learned this, you may be wondering yourself, “there is nothing ‘holy’ about Halloween.”  You are right.

An Abomination to Jesus?!?

It is essentially a day where we remember the dead and attempt to communicate with them because they are “saints.”  If you are an informed Christian, you already know the dead are not in Heaven but are in the dirt of the earth waiting on their judgment.

You also know that communicating with the dead is impossible and yet if done is an abomination to the Lord God Jesus. Communicating with the dead is done through a means known in the Bible, a familiar spirit.  Leviticus 19 v31 says, “31Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.”

‘And the person who turns to mediums and familiar spirits, to prostitute himself with them, I will set My face against that person and cut him off from his people (Leviticus chapter 20).

 

 

How to celebrate Halloween as a Christian.

Halloween Mean?

The current English name Halloween traces back to medieval Christianity. The word hallow is derived from the Middle and Old English words for holy. As a noun, it can also mean saint. In those days, the Christian holiday we know as All Saints’ Day was called All Hallows’ Day, and the day before, when an evening mass was held, was All Hallows’ Eve. That three-word name eventually got shortened to Halloween.

 

 

Halloween is a holiday celebrated each year on October 31, and Halloween 2022 will occur on Monday, October 31. The tradition originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. In the eighth century, Pope Gregory III designated November 1 as a time to honor all saints. Soon, All Saints Day incorporated some of the traditions of Samhain. The evening before was known as All Hallows Eve, and later Halloween. Over time, Halloween evolved into a day of activities like trick-or-treating, carving jack-o-lanterns, festive gatherings, donning costumes, and eating treats.

 

How to celebrate Halloween as a Christian.
Little girl carving pumpkin at Halloween

 

Why Do We Celebrate Halloween on October 31?

 

The ancient Gaelic festival of Samhain, which occurred on November 1 but kicked off the evening before, is the earliest known root of some of our secular Halloween traditions. It marked a pivotal time of year when seasons changed. Still, more importantly, observers also believed the boundary between this world and the next became especially thin, enabling them to connect with the dead. Some other cultures share this belief; a similar idea is mentioned around the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, which also typically occurs in October and involves saying prayers for the dead. This connection to the dead is also where Halloween gains its “haunted” connotations.

The path to the Christian Halloween date of October 31 is a little more complex. Pope Boniface IV began All Saints Day in the early 7th century when he dedicated the Pantheon in Rome to the saints, but the day was May 13. In the next century, Pope Gregory III changed the day to November 1 when he dedicated a chapel in St. Peter’s Basilica to the saints. Yet another century later, Pope Gregory IV added All Saints Day to the Christian calendar, extending the celebration from Rome to churches everywhere. With All Saints Day came All Hallows’ Eve on October 31. This was, perhaps, an effort to offset the pagan occasion with a religious celebration.

 

Ancient Origins of Halloween.

 

Halloween’s origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in). The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago, mostly in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1.

This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.

In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort during the long, dark winter.

To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities. During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other’s fortunes.

When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.

 

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