Surprise: Halloween's Not a Pagan Festival
After All

The holiday and its customs are completely Christian, and some are uniquely American.

honoria

10/06/2010 04:03:24 PM

i wish to state concerning your theory that dressing up and trick or treating being american or french?? it is uniquely irish!! as a child growing up in ireland we always had a hollow'een party with nuts and fruit lemonade and porter, an a drop o' the ''crawthur. for the men an brandy for the wimmin. 'Neighbours and townspeople would dress up as straw men and ghosts, and call; depending on the hospitality they received, they all played games like, ""blindfolding you turning you around and then choosing a saucer, to choose clay meant early death ,water meant travel and various other choices. also we had a cake called a barm breack; in which was baked a ring, for marriage, a pea for wealth, a bean for poverty, a stick for a violent spouse,people would wake up the next day ;to find, their front gate unhinged and other various tricks, bonfires were lit; and still are! a lot of grudges were repaid that night, and still are. We still have the bonfires and the parties: and everyone has a sore head the next day, and long may it continue!!!!!!????????

fr.mike

10/03/2009 08:39:45 PM

If people don't want to celebrate Halloween, I suggest that they don't celebrate Christmas or Easter as they too have pagan roots as well. The Irish Celtic Catholic church did much to combat the pagan influences around them. They stayed true to the gospel and evangelized a country that saved European culture and society while the rest of europe was in the dark ages, the celtic church was thriving, educating and evangelizing. I suggest we use Halloween to remember the example of the saints and be encouraged to evangelize to the now lost and dying world around us.

healthyeatingforhim08

09/25/2009 04:42:18 PM

I have came out of the legalism life of 4 years or so. I thought Halloween has to do with the Devil. Yes it does in some ways but again it's a tradition of the USA. Its part of our culture to live and do and belief what we would like to be and lead too.

DNA08

01/13/2009 01:06:12 PM

I still can't believe there are people out there like Trumpeter721. How can you ever evolve if you limit yourself so drastically? Narrow-mindedness is like purposefully wearing a blindfold. Having faith in something is fine, but that is a decision you make for yourself and noone else. I think if folks learned to open their eyes a little bit, things would be much simpler. That is all.

Feinics

11/25/2008 07:16:30 PM

Way too many inaccuracies and half truths I wont even bother. . Sure now its a melting pot from various cultures, and neither the Christians or Pagans own it so its silly to argue over who has a bigger claim. But Catholicism is far from being the only the influence in Irish culture in the past but then Im Irish what do I know about my heritage and culture? I should leave halloween to be defined by a purely modern american christian context right?

Katkooteh

11/17/2008 11:26:14 PM

Not to be antagonistic or anything, but actually, it IS a pagan festival. No, Pagans do NOT celebrate the end of every month. No, Halloween wasn't created AFTER All Saints' Day, it existed before it. The Irish Catholics did many things to integrate the population into their religion, including bringing pagan practices into their own in order to ease transition. For instance, Irish Catholics in some parts of Ireland still celebrate an occasion where four virgins in white dresses light a giant basin as an everlasting fire. Where was THAT mentioned in the Bible? Secondly, Halloween (Samhain) celebrates Pagan New Year, the end of the harvest, and honoring the dead and has ALWAYS done so. All Saints' Day, coincidentally positioned after Halloween as an alternative Catholic holiday. I could go into further detail, but I'd need a chart, some graphs, and an easel. Where did this author get his/her sources? Lord have mercy.

ian531

11/10/2008 05:46:04 PM

Does it really matter any more. Why, oh why do so many people keep on dredging up all the old arguements? Halloween is more and more celebrated as a ridiculous attempt for children to go round knocking on people's doors and demanding some sort of "reward" for doing so. Samhain is still looked on by wiccan people as a reason to celebrate their traditional New Year, and why not? Do we criticize the Jews, the Chinese, the Arabs and others for celebrating their New Year when they want to and do so every year. Nor do we criticize the Scots for celebrating New Year as being more important than Christmas -- and let's be honest here, for many years there was, an in sporting terms there still can be, battles do to religious beliefs, but, by and large, they get on throughout most of the regular daily activities. So please, stop creating ridiculous comments and arguements. Stop children pestering people on 31st October and respect all other people, no matter what their religious beliefs and understandings. If you are going to criticize, I suggest that you look more fully into such religious groups as Jehova's witnesses and their belief systems - such as the transference of blood. Why would anyone want to give birth to a baby and then, in later life, deny a blood transfusion that might save that child's life. If blood is so important to them as being extremely personal, why do they not accept that the normal human body accepts the new blood, but only on a very temporary basis until it can replace it with blood made by the body itself? Life is precious, in all it's forms, and should be so thought of.

ocachisu

11/01/2008 02:59:15 PM

first off, halloween was created by the catholics to mock the pagan beliefs because, as you put it so nicely, the catholics thought pagans worshipped the devil. i couldn't read ahead from the first paragraph so i don't know what else you said to so happily spit on my religion but i do know that halloween is a fake holiday to scare pagans into becoming catholics, as so it did around 1500 years ago. the day of the dead (november 1st) is originally a pagan holiday dating back to even BEFORE christianity (around 3000 years ago). catholics stole, not adopt, STOLE that holiday from the pagans then thought of a brilliant idea of killing off innocent people who didn't believe in the catholic religion. the catholics renamed the day of the dead "all saints day" which pretty much celebrates the same thing as the day of the dead. and i don't see where you made the connection that anything that people can't control (ei: spirits or their own actions) is considered a sin. did you know that catholics still kill off innocent people because of a religion difference today? because i don't remember murder being holy.

Mystere de la Nuit

10/31/2008 09:44:07 AM

I beg the good Father's pardon, but Hallowe'en (also called Samhain) is very much a Pagan tradtion, but it is true that it has very little, if anything at all depending on one's path, to do with devil worship. Although Richard-ECLA is inaccurate in his statement that Samhain begins the Pagan year (that Sabbat is called Ostara and takes place on the vernal equinox, the time when life begins anew), it is a rather important holiday for many. Many Pagan festivals revolved around the cycle of harvest, and Hallowe'en was usually the last of three sacred harvest days, and was traditionally the day to slaughter some of the animals on the farm so the family would have meat for the winter. The communities or families would gather together, much like is done here in America for Thanksgiving, and celebrate the harvest and enjoy what would not last through the winter months. It is also believed that, on Hallowe'en Night, the Veil between this world and the spirit world is thinnest and that spirits can return on this night. It is a common practice for a Pagan to cast a circle around her Hallowe'en feast, purify the area, and to invoke the spirits of her ancestors to come and enjoy the feast and their family. Magick (which can be considered a sort of active prayer) can be performed, or the presence of family long gone enjoyed. It is also a common practice to leave food outside for the dead. Being a former Catholic myself, I have done some research. Trick or treating evolved from a practice (which I believe took place in Ireland or the British Isles, but I am not sure anymore) where the children of families would dress up as saints or dead family members and go around the village. People would offer gifts to these little facsimiles of the saints and ancestors to honor them or, in the case of the dead, to appease them for some wrong they had been done. Often, this was food, and reminiscent of the traditional Pagan offering of milk and cakes. Hallowe'en is called such because it is a shortened version of the original phrase "All Hallows Even," for Christians referring to the evening before All Saints Day or All Hallows. Some Pagan traditions use this term as well because it is a sacred night. It is discouraging that one that is to be looked to for information and advice did not research this before posting this up. I pray to my Goddess that the good Father will look to his God and see that he has misstepped in his preistly duties.

LisaIreland

10/05/2007 04:59:20 PM

I am agast that this factually inaccurate article is STILL up. How can Fr. Thompson fly in the face of renowned celtic scholars such as Sean O'Duinn and James Makey? For e.g: his assertion that dressing for Halloween was developed by the 14th century Church to immitate the black Death dead is ludicrious. As an Irish history teacher and now youth Minister for a catholic church, I am sorry that Fr. Thompson didn't do his homework. This is appaling. Halloween, All Saints and All Souls are celebrated ALL together at home and long may that last! We see nothing wrong in that and it's very sacred for us still.

sabbathkeeper76

11/08/2006 10:42:43 AM

Right on Trumpeter721

Richard-ELCA

11/01/2006 05:33:22 PM

Fr. Augustine is off base here by assuming that his Church began this annual celebration. That is not the case. Nor is it true that Halloween, aka Samhain to Pagans, is a minor end of the month festival. Samhain marks the beginning of the Pagan year. It is a sacred time. We Christians need to remember the debt we owe to our Pagan sisters and brothers inasmuch as we have "stolen" much from them and never once acknowledged their contribution to our faith practices.

SolusCado

11/01/2006 04:04:36 PM

This article seems to reflect (for me) a major problem with Catholocism in general. Historically, as evidenced in this very article, the Catholic Church has taken upon itself to invent so-called religious holidays. Strictly speaking, I don't see how any organization can take it upon itself to determine what religious holidays people should follow. If the Bible (the living word of God according to Christian believers) says nothing regarding a celebration, to invent one and call it religious is in fact sacreligious. Furthermore, the fact that such Catholic inventions so commonly seem to coincide and share attributes with blatantly pagan holidays just shows at the very least the non-Christian influence on the non-Christian holiday in general, and at worst a deliberate plot to provide a 'Christian' alternative so non-Christians don't have to give anything up in their forced conversion.

Eoconnorntep

10/31/2006 11:35:20 AM

There are several pagan articles, but they're in a separate section. Go to the home page and Celebrating Hallowmas is one of the four features.

pixygiggles

10/30/2006 03:16:19 PM

I also find it deeply disturbing that Beliefnet did not include more articles from the Wiccan and Pagan communities about this holiday. Samhain is a very spiritual time of the year that allows us to reflect and remember those people who have passed on as Samhain marks the end of the Pagan calendar year. In the future I hope to see more diversity in the article posts.

saadaya

10/30/2006 11:02:31 AM

I was saddened to see so many Christian articles on Hallowe'en in your Hallowe'en page and not a single pagan or Wiccan article explaining the true meaning of this important festival. I understand that many Christians visit beliefnet, but I would think pagans would have a better understanding of the true meaning and purpose of All Hallows' Eve, to remember and send light to those who have left their bodies, than Christians who often demean and demonize the festival.

Stormmaker

10/14/2005 08:36:53 PM

Halloween's ok.

fr_tuck

11/02/2004 12:38:28 AM

Oh well. Interesting but not accurate is a good consensus. i had to listen to some guy (who once reminded me that the Bible says all things are lawful) tell someone that Christians who know Halloween is a Satanist holiday and still celebrate do so in rebellion. Only those without a clue regard Halloween as being anything of occult importance aside from the fact that it's celebrated by a lot of people. Occultists generally use a different calendar for spellcasting and such.

Human_Being

11/01/2004 06:21:13 AM

As a child, the rabbi taught us that Judaism is the most humanistic and open of religions -- no dogma, no "banned books". So, I saw no con-tradiction in celebrating Halloween. We also went "Trick or Treat for Unicef", to help others, too. The rabbi has since become a psychologist because it pays more, and I have learnt that Judaism indeed does have dogma. Yet I continue to celebrate Halloween - perhaps definantly. To me, it celebrates humankind's searching for answers to eternal questions. And why not a little mischief? Simcha Torah has lots more! Questionning authority is GOOD for freedom! Finally, to me at least, it's a celebration thanking God for his gift of the Imagination, and for our minds' intelligence (and compassion) as well. To me, EVERYTHING is a gift from God...and Halloween lets people thank Him for our intellectual gifts!

Mondeskind

10/31/2004 03:29:11 PM

Hello all! Yeah, I'm not buying this article overall. There are some very interesting historical points, that add to his argument, but uhm.....it's a pagan holiday. True it's a pagan holiday that has become very bastardized through American capitolism, but Christians can say the same about Christmas. Speaking of which...if you don't want to let you're kids go trick or treating because of the pagan roots of the holiday, you'd better not be putting a Christmas tree up in your living room, come December either... Didn't mean to sound so negative. I hope everyone has a fabulous day and has a GREAT celebration, whatever your faith is. :)

mobrienchi

10/31/2004 09:28:42 AM

With all due respect to Fr. Thompson, O.P. and his article on the origins of Halloween, he is so far off base in his description of the Celtic holidays, the significance of Samhain, and how and why All Saints Day came to be placed next to the old festival date, it's, well, 'scary!' To read a quick and ACCURATE account, try the History Channel's site: http://www.historychannel.com/exhibits/halloween/holiday_origins1.html I find it very disturbing that professor of religious studies is so ill-informed on a subject he purports to write on that he'd pass this off as accurate. To call Samhain a "minor" festival to the Celts is the first hint of a major ignorance of the Celtic world. It was a MAJOR festival, the Celtic New Year. I am a Catholic, a theologian, and a Celt, btw.

Mskitty2

10/31/2004 08:51:48 AM

Catholics are pagans!? Could it be that it was meant in a positive way or tongue in cheek? Not that I care one way or the other, but from where do such ideas spring? I have to say since moving to the Bible Belt I have a more and more negative impression of Christians. I was baptised in the Methodist church as an infant, and then later confirmed in the Episcopal Church. The evangelicals and fundamentalists who dominate the area where I live have really turned me off on the religious heritage of my youth.

DonaldPrytherch

10/30/2004 05:00:17 PM

Nowhere in the Halloween discussion do I find any mention of "Trick or Treat for UNICEF" (the United Nations Children's Fund". This was started many years ago by a Presbyterian Church youth group in Chester PA to encourage children and young people to share with other children-in-need around the world - along with costumes, candy, and neighborhood parades and parties.

veronikao

10/29/2004 10:10:55 PM

obviously this man should not be speaking of things which he knows nothing about. he's not done research and is talking out of his ***

foresttytto

10/29/2004 11:28:20 AM

Leave it to a Catholic priest to take away the importance of a pagan holiday and make it Christian. And yes, I realize that Halloween and Samhain are not the same holiday, rather Halloween arose from Samhain. Either way, Happy Halloween and Blessed Samhain!

methodistsearching

10/29/2004 09:47:37 AM

Sorry, typo: This whole idea of Christians begin against "all things pagan" should have said "being against"

methodistsearching

10/29/2004 09:45:41 AM

This whole idea of Christians begin against "all things pagan"is a very misguided, IMHO. I really don't think that God was talking about Zeus, Apollo, and any other cultural icon of that ilk when he made the commandment against idol worship or to have no other gods. To borrow from our friends in Real Estate (Location, Location, Location), the most important sets of idols he was warning against were: Money&Power, Money&Power, Money&Power. Those ideas were as relevant then as they are today (i.e. "eternal", like God!)

rickybarnes1960

10/27/2004 07:36:08 PM

Fr. Thompson is merely perpetuating the long Christian tradition of stealing concepts and practices from other belief systems and claiming them to be Christian in origin. Only the most basic of research will contradict most of his assertions, beginning with the origin and reasons for the holiday and the reason for the date.

paganivy

10/31/2003 02:01:59 PM

This is like saying modern-day retail-industry driven Christmas is indicative of all that is spiritual about Christmas, or that chocolate-covered eggs and giant fluffy bunnies are the message of Easter. In the case of all three, there is an "American Holiday" and a spiritual undertone. The thing to remember is that we are all the same, and God (no matter how you conceive of said entity) loves us all the same. We can only do our best, people. Halloween is (today) a day to celebrate that which frightens us, silliness, pretend games and candy. Samhain is still the most sacred day of the year and the spiritual new year for Pagans the world over. Walking around in a witch costume on Halloween will no more make a Christian child a Pagan Witch than hunting for Easter Eggs will make a Pagan (or Jewish, etc.) child a Christian.

pacigoth13

10/30/2003 03:57:44 PM

I don't think the halloween issue is an either/or dilemma. The essence of "halloween 2003" is a hybrid of many different roots from many different places; some sacred and some secular. By accepting it as a whole, one accepts things that are clearly unbiblical; by rejecting it as a whole one reverts to fundamentalism. The solution is obvious, balance. There is no reason to fear the day or look down on people for eating candy. Get over it. With that said, before engaging in a specific action (like trick or treating) do yourself and look into where the practise came from lest you re-enact evil unknowingly.

rbethell

10/30/2003 12:11:35 PM

I can't believe people get upset about this. Halloween in our day and age is the celebration of commercial candy manufacturers and B movie horror flicks. All Saints Day is something which I never even consider in the same breath. One means a lot to me. The other sends my kids to the dentist. :-)

originalpatricia

10/30/2003 06:05:20 AM

Over a period of many centuries things alter and customs do not stay the same. Hallows E'en was always a Christian Festival from the time the Christians took it over from the Pagans (bad joke) the Christians take over other peoples festivals a lot, I understand from the past differences between Christianity and other fundamental faiths Judaism Islam etc. they may not want to "Celebrate a Christian Festival nor a Pagan on" ok - so dont then but I am a LIBERAL free thinking woman who is Christian and Loves and respects all people and their faiths and beliefs and to stop your kids from "Trick or Treat" playing, is silly, God loves you anyway He loves every one even Party-Poopers to read that people prevent their kids from a little harmless fun makes me sad I will pray for them

leonel_martinez

11/04/2002 11:55:51 AM

PaulBnow: I am Catholic and don't consider "pagan" a pejorative term, but any encycopedia will tell you Catholic does not equal pagan.

PaulBnow

11/04/2002 02:58:30 AM

This proves that Halloween is Pagan. Whenever you have a Catholic priest defending it. Catholic=Pagan

damianna

11/02/2002 03:35:16 PM

This is really quite funny. I'm a bit ashamed of my fellow Celts here, to abandon the debate of our most sacred holiday to the fundies and the fluff bunnies. But oh well. I don't have any quarrel with my Wiccan or Christian cousins here, but I'd just rather that the facts be straightened out. (Where's Eric when you need him?) Thanks to Brannogenos for stating that Samhain some silly pagan holiday where we Celts all got drunk or whatever. This is our most sacred holy day of the year. This is NOT to be confused with Halloween, which IS a Christian holiday (as is, I believe, Dia de los Muertos). The author is correct on that stance. But as for us Celts, we don't advocate human sacrifice or Devil worship on our most sacred holiday of the year. (Heck, we don't even believe in Devils, a Christian creation, much less worship them.)

FaeryDragon

11/01/2002 03:29:20 PM

themarirev, This question/statement, "That there is no possibility that those who did brought some of their previous held rituals/rites and incorporated them with the Christian rituals/rites?" was from me not Trumpeter721. >>If you actually studied the sociology of religion for 25 years as I have, you would know that all religion has bits and pieces of other religions mixed with it.<< I would agree with you and this was also the point I was trying to make. :)

FaeryDragon

11/01/2002 03:20:36 PM

Trumpeter721 wrote: >>Answer: Hello?? I don't know what type of Christianity you practice, but the Christian God that I know does not permit us to keep worshiping pagan gods and performing pagan rituals!<< Christians from many different denominations still practice rituals/rites that were originally pagan(read the history books on the different popular common rituals/rites for Christian holidays). Just because that these Christians still do or engage in these rituals does not mean that they are worshipping other gods or disrespecting God. In fact, a lot of them do them for the opposite reason.

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 02:13:22 PM

themarirev- I think your point is well taken as far as the children / parents "faith" and how the church is not just a building, but a people, in their hearts. However I have to disagree with you on certain aspects. (cont below)

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 02:12:31 PM

No where in the Bible or in any right teachings will you find that Christians are to respect other religions - we are to respect other PEOPLE, which would include their property. But the actual religions that they practice, anything outside of Christianity - that is an abomination to God. The first commandment that God always gives is to worship Him alone - from the ten commandments to when Jesus was asked the most important and He replied with the two (Love the Lord your God with all your hear, mind, and soul; and love your neighbor as you love yourself...) it is clear how God feels about any religion that does not worship him. Faith in anyone other than Jesus is NOT respectable. However we are to treat every person on this earth with the love and respect that Christ has shown us. (cont. below)

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 02:10:24 PM

First of all, I have studied other religions, and though it is admirable that you have dedicated such time to religious studies, it seems there are some concepts that you are not understanding. Learning comes through the Holy Spirit - which is why the Pharisee and like parties can study scripture their whole lives and still not understand it, yet Paul in just a few years could acquire an amazing understanding and become one of the greatest writers/teachers of the church. (cont below)

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 02:09:35 PM

Saints is a term used by Paul in the Bible referring to Christians. The Church has a process of canonizing certain people as ?saints? ? which is basically an honor saying that the person was definitely a Christian and that they served God in an exceptional, or recognizable way. Also, our funerals are NOT the same as the "day of the dead" celebrations. We do not have food offerings meant for the dead to enjoy - we have meals for us to eat! It is a time to say goodbye. No one goes back every year and thinks that for one day their dead relatives come back to visit them! We dont believe their souls are in the grave and come back to visit every year. Christians believe when we die we are with Christ. The two could not possible be more different. (cont. below)

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 02:07:22 PM

Ah -I just checked your profile and see that you are not Christian. That explains alot, because your understanding seems to be in favor of a god or higher power, but it lacks Biblical principles. You need to understand that you cannot be mulit-faith and call yourself born- again, in fact you state that you are not a Christian. The term born again is a Biblical term used to describe someone who has accepted Jesus as their Lord and savior, namely a Christian.

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 02:06:43 PM

You are caught up in this concept that God made all things, so all things are of God and if you believe in God, you can see good in everything... This is just not true. Yes, God created the universe and everything in it. But there is evil in this world and you cannot be so pretentious as to think that you are above temptation. If you read all of Thessalonians, you would see that Paul is telling us to stay away from anything that could lead us astray from worshiping the one true God. You are talking about giving your whole life over to God - but do you even know who that God is?? My honest suggestion to you (and please take this as a loving advise, not an insult) but perhaps you should concentrate the next 25 years of your life on developing a personal relationship with the God of the Bible. Then maybe you will understand the fierceness by which I defend my faith and will accept no alternative "multi-faith" God. There is only one way to knowing this God, and it is through His son Jesus Christ.

themarirev

11/01/2002 09:52:43 AM

Trumpeter721 "That there is no possibility that those who did brought some of their previous held rituals/rites and incorporated them with the Christian rituals/rites?" If you actually studied the sociology of religion for 25 years as I have, you would know that all religion has bits and pieces of other religions mixed with it. The scholor Joesph Campbell made these connetions quite evident. Maybe your should study other relgions before being so pompous about your misperceptions. Saints are not deities appointed by God but are prayed to as assigned divinity of God. These can be related to Hinduism, which is thousands of years older the the Abrahamic religions. Study ALL things of God o ye of little understanding. Cont...

themarirev

11/01/2002 09:52:15 AM

Cont... "In other cultures they celebrate customs such as "day of the dead", where they believe their ancestors come back from the dead for a day. They even go to the cemeteries and bring a food offering and celebrate among the dead." Christains have the same celebration everyday under a different title. They get together and bring food offerings, communing and discussing the attributes of the dead. It's called a "funeral". Then again, historically speaking, Christains like to give a ritual from another culture a different name and think symantics make it more rightous. Cont...

themarirev

11/01/2002 09:51:25 AM

Cont... "Abstain from ALL appearance of evil" (I Thessalonians 5:21,22). " Appearence is a manifestation beofore our eyes and our core perceptions are what makes the evaluation of "evil" or "good". Once one TOTALLY GIVE THEIR ENITRE LIFE (NOT JUST PART OF IT) TO GOD, they can see God in everything and fear no perception of evil appearing before them because ALL THINGS are of God and only ye of little faith feels the power of "evil" can hurt them. It can only do so if your faith is less then the size of a mustard seed. Cont...

themarirev

11/01/2002 09:49:41 AM

Cont... " from the unspeakable things that occur in worship rituals, to the ax-murderers ? are ? cool mentality, to the pumpkin-smashing, egging/toilet-papering vandalism done by children." The greatest majority being the children of Christains. Proving the rhetoric of their parents does not match reality of their "faith". If church were seen as it should, within the heart instead of in a building, maybe more respect woould be seen. However, respect of others beliefs (thereby their property) is not a promotion of the majority of sermons. Arrogant self rightousness is. Rev

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 05:25:02 AM

Don't some of you realize how serious the battle of souls is? How often did Christ warn us to be watchful, to be cautious - or even the very elite, the most devoted of God's people, will fall prey to the devil's deceptions. The Lord says "My people perish from a lack of knowledge" To us, we may just be putting on a bunny suit and dancing at a costume party - but there are people out there who practice wiccan and worship these false pagan gods. There are young kids who think it's cool to have a seance or go to fortune tellers - these are false gods, people. They are the devices of the devil, and they open up doorways for satan to enter our lives. (continued below)

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 05:24:29 AM

(continued from above) Jesus was very serious about these things, because he knew that souls would be lost... Especially today, when so many are searching for answers and turning to ppl like Ms Cleo instead of to Jesus. We can't act like these things are ok... we can't be ignorant of where our customs come from or why we believe what we do. It is not harmless for a married person to flirt around with some other man / woman.. likewise it is not harmless for us to "flirt around with" the customs/rituals of pagan religions and pagan gods.

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 05:05:52 AM

>>Question, do you think that no pagans willingly converted to Christianity? That there is no possibility that those who did brought some of their previous held rituals/rites and incorporated them with the Christian rituals/rites? Answer: Hello?? I don't know what type of Christianity you practice, but the Christian God that I know does not permit us to keep worshiping pagan gods and performing pagan rituals! Hence the rejection of Halloween by myself and like-minded Christians because we DO NOT THINK IT'S COOL TO MAKE A PLAY DAY OUT OF A PAGAN HOLIDAY!

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 04:38:41 AM

bustusmaximus- You mentioned the various holidays during the Christmas season. Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Christ, and it rather irritates me that ppl would go and make up their own holiday so that they can enjoy the festivities without worshiping or celebrating Jesus. I feel they have no business doing so, because the Christmas holiday is a time to celebrate Jesus. In the same sense, Christians have no business getting involved in a clearly pagan celebration. Halloween is a major feast day for many pagan religions, including witches, and satan-worshipers. In other cultures they celebrate customs such as "day of the dead", where they believe their ancestors come back from the dead for a day. They even go to the cemeteries and bring a food offering and celebrate among the dead. (continued below)

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 04:37:34 AM

While we may be out doing what we feel is 'innocent trick-or-treating', there are other very terrible and ungodly things that take place on this evening. For us to ignore that, or to make a joke of it, would be very ignorant. Reading a daily horoscope or getting your palm read can also be done and not taken seriously, but God instructs us to "Abstain from ALL appearance of evil" (I Thessalonians 5:21,22). "Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness," Paul warns us, "but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret" (continued below)

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 04:35:29 AM

To think that renaming a holiday or creating a 'copycat' holiday can change what that holiday really is or stands for is just plain ridiculous. Halloween is a pagan celebration ? from the unspeakable things that occur in worship rituals, to the ax-murderers ? are ? cool mentality, to the pumpkin-smashing, egging/toilet-papering vandalism done by children. Halloween is Not something that any heart seeking the Lord would want anything to do with or have anything to do with.

Trumpeter721

11/01/2002 03:50:54 AM

'It does seem anomalous today that even many evangelical Christians have come to regard Halloween as sort of a harmless holiday on which to play games and dress up in masks and occult-theme costumes. These at least imitate and attempt to minimize those works of darkness which Paul exhorts us to ?cast off.? ?Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness,? he says in another place, ?but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret? (Ephesians 5:11,12). ?Prove all things; hold fast that which is good,? Paul says in yet another place. ?Abstain from all appearance of evil? (I Thessalonians 5:21,22). ?Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil? (Ephesians 6:11), for the devil ?walketh about, seeking whom he may devour? (I Peter 5:8).' HMM

FaeryDragon

10/31/2002 02:37:57 PM

mettamorphosis wrote: >>Samhain (Hallowe'en) was a pagan festival hundreds of years before christ was born.>The christians used torture, assimilation, and extreme conformity to change Samhain into what is not known as Halloween.<< Question, do you think that no pagans willingly converted to Christianity? That there is no possibility that those who did brought some of their previous held rituals/rites and incorporated them with the Christian rituals/rites?

bustusmaximus

10/31/2002 01:42:53 PM

There are obviously some folks that don't get that there CAN BE different holidays that land on or around the same time. Samhain and Halloween are not the same thing. Christmas, Hannukkah and Winter Solstice all happen in December, but that does not make them all Pagan. If your birthday lands on December 25th that doesn't make you Christ. Spend less time being a "finger pointer" and more time leading by example.

mettamorphosis

10/31/2002 01:16:07 PM

And speaking of the Bubonic Palgue, or Black Death, Europe may have not been brought to its knees if the christians hadn't been so obseesed with killing innocent cats. The Plague was carried by rats who got it from infected fleas. And since every civilized person knows that cats are wirches' familiars, everyone realizes that they are inherently evil. Alas, if only the helpful felines had been around to EAT the rats, pehaps Europe may have been saved...

mettamorphosis

10/31/2002 01:12:49 PM

Where on earth did Father Augustine get his information?! Samhain (Hallowe'en) was a pagan festival hundreds of years before christ was born. Halloween is NOT christian nor is it American. The christians used torture, assimilation, and extreme conformity to change Samhain into what is not known as Halloween. Virtually all traditions are descended from ancient Celtic rites. What I don't understand is how people like Father Augustine can claim that Hallowe'en is actually a christain holiday and a holy one at that. Witch hunts and torture are holy themes? The systematic slaughter of the Druids was sacred?! Yes, trick-or-treating is American, but that little tradition was created by an American president during WWI in an effort to stop the vandalism and trickery going on in the cities on the night of October 31st by Irish youths. The actual act of traveling from home to home was practiced not only by children, but also by adults and the elderly in Pagan society.

cynthiawolf

10/30/2002 06:08:11 PM

Even my dictionary agrees, Halloween is the eve of All Saints' Day. However, Wiccans (white witchcraft) also celebrate this day as the Hallowing believing it to be the day the dead are closest to the Earth hence the seances, etc. To me, it's just one big costume party! HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Every day is happy when you invite Jesus to the party!!!

leonel_martinez

10/30/2002 04:54:26 PM

People who believe Halloween is an evil holiday have a right to this belief, and they should be respected. However, it would be ashamed to assume that their stance constitutes THE Christian position. It's refreshing to read this article by Father Thompson because it represents a much older and more widely accepted tradition within Christianity.

AmysAngels

10/30/2002 02:24:25 AM

Maybe I was just more informed than most Christians, but I've known about All Hallow's Eve and All Saint's Day since I was extremely young. I think since I've been able to recite John 3:16! I just took for granted that everyone else did too. I guess I can see where some of the ppl who post on here might think that ALL Christians have believed Halloween to be a "pagan holiday", but as I said before I've never thought that...I guess that's because I was educated and I'm assuming that others have not been. My children already know that it isn't a time of "devil worship" or whatever other silly stuff the media and society tries to place in their heads. I've already told them what I learned myself...at a very early age. God Bless you all.... Christian, Pagan, Athiest, or whatever your belief... AmysAngels

Renaissanceman48

10/30/2002 01:24:43 AM

The Germans may be copying this tradition. A friend who just returned from visiting over there said that there was a surprising amount of Halloween decorating and related activities.

innerstrength

10/29/2002 11:51:00 PM

Shavirin, Christians believe in God and in Christ; therefore, Christianity is not a pagan religion. Pagan's do not worship God and Christ. Get it straight!

brian0526

10/17/2002 08:39:03 AM

Great to see facts about Halloween instead of the rabid shouting about how it's the Devil's day. Like many Christian holidays, it's closely related to past pagan celebrations. But, Halloween is by no means Satan worship. Thanks for presenting the facts. Peace, Brian

shavirin

11/12/2001 04:39:54 AM

In fact this article clearly prove, that Christianity is pagan religion. Looks nice.

Brannogenos

10/31/2001 08:54:00 AM

The holiday of the ancient (and *modern*) Celts of the British Isles and Brittany in north west France celebrated on Oct31/Nov1 was *not* a 'minor' holiday, it was *the* most important holiday in pre-Christian times, and is still important among Celtic communities. It is true that Samhain/Sauin/Samhuinn and All Hallows Eve have seperate origins though, at least someones getting that now... its rediculous that so many Christians say a holiday they created (All Hallows, which became Halloween) is 'pagan'.

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