Halloween as a Christian

Chepkorir Hilda - posted on 10/08/2010 ( 14 moms have responded )

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I need some advice about Halloween. I was not born in this country and i still struggle with the meaning of the whole thing. I am reluctant to have my kids participate because the holiday to me looks demonic with all the decorations and costumes. Any advice?

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Victoria - posted on 10/10/2010

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halloween is always a very touchy subject in this community as we have those who celebrate it, those who use it as a seed planting ministry tool (with tracts on treats) & those who want no part of it.

With this current thread there has already been some personal attacks, I am therefore locking it to further comment.

Heather - posted on 10/09/2010

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There is a TON of history behind Halloween, and none of it is biblical. Regardless of which history you look at, it is still a day that God made. I don't believe that we should hide in our houses, but neither do I want my children participating in it. Last year we stayed home and had a family movie night, and blessed others by passing out candy. The boys got to help give it away (and eat as much as they wanted). We gave each child a baggy of candy with a thank you card in it that they could color and give to the adult that took them trick-or-treating. We also included a Scripture and really enjoyed sharing God's love with so many people.

Jennifer - posted on 10/08/2010

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I am not a advocate for Halloween, one thought would be to see if any of the churches in your town have a harvest festival or something. Sometimes churches do Trunk or treating and yes, some parents allow grousome or demonic costumes. I hate to set my daughter apart from her peers so back home she could dress up and go to Boo at the Zoo... but for us face paint and dressing up is not a once a year thing.... I choose not to participate in trick or treating because 1) it is a bunch of strangers running around masked and 364 days a year you wouldn't open your door to a masked stranger (big or little) and 2) it negates everything we teach our kids with the going to strangers houses and ringing the bell thing, and 3) I just don't like it. My daughter can dress up and go to her school party dressed up and go to church dressed up but that's it. We stay pretty well out of the ruckus.

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Merry - posted on 10/10/2010

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Yes I too was a kid once and I had a great childhood too, but it was without believing in Santa clause or the tooth fairy! I know jesus wasnt born in december, I've always known, but christmas was placed there to have a substitute for the pagan holiday. And there's nothing about the dates that would 'upset'god so to speak!

As for the tree, saying always went like this for us- that we use a pine tree because they stay green and alive all year long just like jesus is always living with us, and the branches point upwards to praise god as al nature is praising god, and we put lights on the tree to remember that we are the lights of the world, and we put ornaments on to remember where we come from and our past. And finally the gifts are to remember the wise men who brought gifts to baby Jesus and to remember the joy of giving.

I've never heard much said about Halloween in reference to Jesus or how it could bring him glory, unless someone actually reads the verses passed out!

Jennifer - posted on 10/10/2010

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My daughter is a pessimist... she always has been. She's always known I was behind everything. Once the "tooth fairy" left her a note with a coupon for a special dinner with mommy. I'm a pretty unorthodox mom though. My step son was born on dec 25th and we make a cake for him and a cake for jesus. I've explained that Jesus wasn't born dec 25th but it's as good a day as any to celebrate it. We get a tree in November and decorate it and enjoy it, we have gifts, but we also GIVE... She chooses any toy she really really wants for herself and we give it to toys for tots. We participate in giving tree, buy blankets and pizza for homeless, we sing carols but we do that all year long. Holidays are what you make them for sure. one year we invited a close family friend to dinner and he came as santa claus.. my daughter looked at him studied for a minute and said "Hi Dave". We do not decorate for Halloween but she may dress up for her school to do's and if our church has a harvest festival we will participate. My poor little cynic doesn't believe in any of the fairy tales figures... I guess i was lucky that way.

Merry - posted on 10/10/2010

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My family always stayed out of Halloween, we would go bowling on Halloween night and have a great time.
Our explanation was just that there were bad traditions that went along with Halloween that god wouldn't agree with, as we got older we learned the origin and such. I never felt I missed out on anything because at st nicks day we would get candy in our stockings! It was just as good to me.
Now my husbands family participated in Halloween, they dressed up as nice characters and carved nice pumpkins etc. One yearly husband was 10 or so he decided to dress up as Moses and instead of receiving candy he gave each house a paper with verses on it.
He wants to dress up our son this year, he says it's mostly because he knows Eric is so cute and he wants to show him off! I don't want to. I want to have our own time but not participate in Halloween.
I don't like what it started as, I don't like what it's become. I just don't want to invite it into our kids lives.
He says I'm being too extreme but I just don't feel comfortable trying to change it into something good, I'd rather just stay out of it.
We already have agreed not to do the whole Santa clause thing or the Easter bunny or the tooth fairy etc. So I think its reasonable to just not celebrate Halloween either.
Idk, maybe I'm too extreme, but I just don't feel ok with my sweet innocent boy having anything to do with a holiday that for some, involves witches, ghosts, demons, spells, animal sacrifice, etc etc etc
Idk, I guess we need to discuss it more, until we reach an agreement but I don't see myself being ok with it....

Sarah - posted on 10/09/2010

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When I was growing up, it was always a tradition with my dad & me to carve pumpkins together & then I would dress up & he would take me trick-or-treating around our neighborhood. I had a lot of fun! I always remembered how much innocent fun I had when I was little, so I have chosen to have similar traditions with my kids. This year my husband & I are taking our son (he'll be 13 months) trick-or-treating around the neighborhood that I grew up in. It's a very safe place & I feel VERY comfortable taking him there. We are dressing him up as a little lizard & plan to get lots of pictures, too. I've never thought of the holiday as a celebration of ghosts/demons/witches etc. I just think it's fun to dress up & get lots of candy lol. This is what works for our family & I understand that other families have different opinions on the subject. I think you should only do what you are completely comfortable with!

Carla - posted on 10/09/2010

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My grandson LOVES dinosaurs. His mama got him a dinosaur costume. Our granddaughter is going as Snow White. We always participated in Halloween, and our children, and now grandchildren. We light up the house, carve pumpkins with nice faces and take pictures of the neighborhood kids when they come to the door. We are very careful with our grandbabies, they go only to neighbors we know and then the parents cart them to grandparents' houses for more candy and pix. It's a great night. We do NOT scare them with stories of demons. The day is what you make it. To them it is a time of lots of candy and showing off their costumes. Also, their church has park 'n treat at the church parking lot. All the members bring their candy and the kids trick or treat the cars of the members. I thought this was a novel idea.

We are to be the light of the world. Hiding in our houses or not participating is not interracting and showing you can have fun without danger or evil. If your children are not from this country, they are probably looking forward to going out! I like to let children be children as long as they can, so we believe in Santa and the Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, etc. It in no way diminishes our love of Jesus or the Reason for these Seasons.

God bless, honey

Shirley - posted on 10/09/2010

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I completely agree with you about how it looks. My advice is to research the origins of the holiday and what each tradition symbolizes. Im sure you will find that this is a tradition that you may not want to start.

Candy - posted on 10/09/2010

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We let our girls dress up. We dont do the trick or treat thing. It is to dangerous and plus we told them not to take candy from strangers. We dont let them dress up in anything to scary. I think it is how you celebrate not what is being celebrated. My grandmother would hand out church fliers with her candy every year. Your Christmas tree is a pagan traditions. So it is all about how YOU celebrate the holiday and what you teach your kids. God can be in anything.

Trina L - posted on 10/08/2010

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I still struggle with this myself. I was raised a Catholic, many of whom celebrate Halloween wholeheartedly. I always did the Halloween thing as a child, and I have always allowed my little girl to do it. The last few years it has really played on my mind about the pagan ritualism behind a lot of it. You should definitely look up the traditions behind Halloween to help you decide if you want to participate or allow your kids to. I'm definitely praying about it this year. One of my girls is probably going to a Halloween-alternative at a a church, but my youngest child is going to be with her dad that weekend, and I know he will go all-out for it. I don't have an answer for you...I just wanted to let you know you are not the only one who wonders about it.

Chepkorir Hilda - posted on 10/08/2010

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Thanks all for your input our church do have some kind of harvest celebrations which my kids will participate in for the first time this year, I just wanted to know how to handle school situations where the hold halloween parties for them. Thanks Rebekah for that history of its origin.

Rebekah - posted on 10/08/2010

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I don't know if you have actually studied out how Halloween originated, but it did not originate from a "demonic" or even pagan culture. It's roots go back to Ireland and Scotland. Halloween was never the name of this night, it was actually All Saints Day or All Hallows Eve, which "Hallows" means Saints. The purpose of this day was to end the last harvest before winter in Ireland/Scotland, they would go to the hilltops and light a bonfire which would start bonfires across the lands and they would dress up as the evil spirits because they believed it warded them off, since on this night everyone believed that the dead would roam the earth (similar to the Day of Dead celebrated in Mexico). In Scotland kids who were poor, this was the one night they could go trickering or "trick-or-treating" as well call in in America... and kids would literally do a trick, such as a dance, or a song or juggling, etc. for a treat, which was usually food or candy. This became adopted in America and of course as we Americans do, have changed it and altered it into something it was never meant to be. Is the whole warding off spirit thing a little paganish? Yes, but Christianity didn't reach Ireland/Scotland until later.

I personally look at it this way. You don't have to teach your kids about Halloween and the evil aspects about it, but you can teach your kids how to be a LIGHT on the darkest night of the year. My son is only 2, we won't do trick or treating this year too young in my opinion, but he's going to get to pass out candy to all the kids that come to our door, and attached to each piece of candy will be a verse. I want to be the lighthouse in my neighborhood that draws all people to it, because I have the very thing they need in life - JESUS!!! :)

Deshetta - posted on 10/08/2010

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Most churches in Houston host a Harvest Festival. We allow the children to dress up, but they aren't allowed to wear scary costumes. Their parents and people in the community have to follow the same guidelines. Instead of going trick or treating, the church members supply the candy and they just give out goodie bags. There are also games and contests, food, and lots of fellowship.

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