Why I Let My Children Dress Up for Halloween

I’ve always been afraid of scary things.

I can still remember the raw fear I felt watching “Nightmare on Elm Street” at a sleepover birthday party in the 5th grade.

I called my parents to come and get me.  

Because that’s what chickens do. And because, Kujo was next on the movie list.

For weeks, lo months, the terrifying images from those movies haunted me.

My kids, especially my oldest have always been sensitive to frightening stories and images, so we don’t allow them.

And so, it might come as a surprise that I let my my children dress up for Halloween.  

At least it was to an acquaintance of mine who berated me the other day for my unholy choice.  Her words, “We avoid the day entirely. We shut off our lights and pretend not to be home because nothing about the day glorifies God.”

I must admit I felt some indignation rise up. And so I said, “Instead of hiding, why not use the opportunity to shed The Light on a dark day. It would be powerful to teach your kids that we don’t have to be like the world to live in the world.”

That pretty much ended our conversation.

But I couldn’t get away from it. Especially since I wasn’t exactly doing my brilliant idea.

I know there are a lot of Christians who share my acquaintance’s view.  And I know there are a lot of Christians who let their kids dress up in fun costumes and participate in some way.

My kids love candy. They love dressing up. And even though we usually just participate in church or neighborhood activities, I wondered what they thought about Halloween.

And so, I asked them.  
 
Some of their answers surprised me.  And so we sat down and explained some of the darkness behind Halloween.  My kids looked fearful. Not so much about the evil choices some people make on Satan’s holiday, more about the idea of us removing costumes and candy from their future.  Like the TV.

So, here’s what our family is planning:  My kids are going to don their homemade costumes (that I’ll be sharing at this week’s DIYP). We are going to stuff as much candy into our bags as we can at our Church Fall Festival the day before Halloween.  And the next day we’re going to our community activities, to replace all the candy we will eat the night before.  And on Halloween night, we will sit in our driveway and pass out the best candy we can afford.

Along with these little booklets that have a great Christian message: The Hidden Treat

We’re going to do our part to spread a little light.

I found this really great article about Christians and Halloween. The author talks about our options, most of which are extremes. Here’s the part I like:

There’s another option open to Christians: limited, non-compromising participation in Halloween. There’s nothing inherently evil about candy, costumes, or trick-or-treating in the neighborhood. In fact, all of that can provide a unique gospel opportunity with neighbors. Even handing out candy to neighborhood children–provided you’re not stingy–can improve your reputation among the kids. As long as the costumes are innocent and the behavior does not dishonor Christ, trick-or-treating can be used to further gospel interests.


Ultimately, Christian participation in Halloween is a matter of conscience before God.  Whatever level of Halloween participation you choose, you must honor God by keeping yourself separate from the world and by showing mercy to those who are perishing.  Halloween provides the Christian with the opportunity to accomplish both of those things in the gospel of Jesus Christ.  It’s a message that is holy, set apart from the world; it’s a message that is the very mercy of a forgiving God. 

What better time of the year is there to share such a message than Halloween?”

So, what do you do?

Comments

  1. 1

    says

    Our family shares your viewpoint. When I was growing up I had a friend who never did anything worldly because it was “bad” and unGodly. Honestly, I felt sorry for her. Our family is made up of Christ-following, good people who, like you said, live in this world but are not of it. I married a man with the same views, so our kids dress up and get candy (often at church events, but this year for the first time she’ll get to go to three or four doors just to see what it’s like). We have fun but within proper boundaries. Thanks for sharing the article, too! :)

  2. 2

    says

    It is an interesting topic among us Christians. We will take Madi to our church trick or trunk party on the 30th. And as long as the holiday is not taken real serious, I think it’s okay to let them play dress up and get some candy. But, I do understand why some don’t.
    Great idea with the booklets.

  3. 3

    says

    My husband and I grew up with different family traditions surrounding this holiday. We’ve both bent a bit (mostly me). We do participate in trick-or-treating. After much prayer, I’ve come to believe that non-participation in our specific neighborhood would build more walls between Christians and non-Christians. We wish to build community and point to the Light, not cede to the darkness and create higher barriers.

  4. 4

    says

    I LOVE your blog. We have always let our girls dress up. Nothing scary. This year we will have Lucy from I love Lucy, Little Red Riding Hood and a Bee. My husband’s a pastor and before kids we always questioned what we would do. I agree with a previous comment about putting up walls between Christians and non-Christians. We teach our girls about Halloween and also share with them about Reformation Day.

  5. 5

    says

    I totally agree. Getting caught up in RELIGION is where people begin to condemn themselves and act like they’re above everyone else. If you have a relationship with God then you know that having FUN was His invention.

    Halloween did not start out as a block party full of candy and bobbing for apples. That is just a tradition that has developed over time.

    Keep the costumes in good taste and I don’t see why kiddos can’t have fun either!

  6. 6

    says

    We did not watch scary movies when my kids were growing up either. I still don’t watch them. We all dressed up for Halloween and went trick or treating, though, because we did not feel it was any sort of religious holiday, just a candy and costume thing.

  7. 8

    says

    We dress up and trick or treat, first down our small town’s “downtown” area about a week before, then we go celebrate Costume Sunday at church at the kids’ service, and the we go out Halloween night around the neighborhood. Most of the candy gets given away to various people to whom I can pawn it off on. We don’t focus on the origins of Halloween, just as we don’t focus on the pagan origins of a Christmas tree.

  8. 9

    says

    We are on a similar basis with you.
    This year we are also participating in our first Trunk or Treat at church! and we have never ever in 25 years bought a costume!

  9. 10

    says

    I live to dress up! It’s the only time I get to feel like a kid again. So we will dress up and go to Trunk or Treat at our church on Sunday nite. Then on Friday nite my friend’s church is giving out candy and tracks that tell the kids to come to church after trick or treat for a special treat.

  10. 11

    says

    From the time Katelyn was a baby we participated in Halloween. However, each and every Halloween Katelyn seemed to get sick right before or after. When Ryan came along, we put the dress up on the back burner – we didn’t go out, but did give out treats. However, that changed four years ago . . . we were getting nasty gore at our door that was freaking out Ryan. Then we began getting moms and dads that were literally driving up and dropping their kids off from other neighborhoods. Then kids were coming back to our door more than one time. We decided then and there that we would celebrate Halloween at home with pizza and cute Halloween movies like The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown, Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, etc. The kids really enjoy our special night.

  11. 12

    says

    We have always let our kids dress up and have fun on Halloween. If we don’t see or seek the evil in it, and take every day to celebrate the life of Christ, I don’t see an issue with it.

    Growing up Catholic, we used to trick or treat as kids, then my mom would take us to church for the eve of All Saints’ Day – a holy day of obligation in the RCC, and a time to remember loved ones that have passed away. This link provides an article describing Halloween and its Christian roots which I found very interesting.

    http://www.americancatholic.org/Messenger/Oct2001/Family.asp

    I love your idea of using Halloween as another day not to hide away, but to spread the gospel message. Great post!

  12. 13

    says

    We let our children dress up in non-scary costumes. We had a discussion the other day about why some of the families at our church are against Halloween. I tried to help the boys see their side of the arguement, then I explained to them why we thought it was okay for them to participate. I liked the quote and the flyer is a great idea. This helped me today. Sometimes it is so easy to second guess my decision on this particular subject.

  13. 14

    says

    Just have to say, I love your blog! It is going on my blog roll for sure.

    We too, are Christians, and we let our son trick-or-treat. We also decorate for the season. Although I prefer fun things like scarecrows and pumpkins, he is into scary-but-not-too-scary decorations.

    When I was a kid, I was not allowed to go trick-or-treating, and I feel like I missed out on a lot. My son and I have a lot of fun going door to door and meeting the neighbors. Then we go home and help hand out treats at our own door with my grandma.

    It is a fun tradition and I see nothing harmful about it.

  14. 15

    says

    Boy, you’re brave–this topic is so hard for many Christians to agree upon. I think you hit the nail on the head, however. Growing up, we were never allowed to dress up in anything scary and we avoided the more evil parts of celebration. I’ve continued this with my kids. We’ll go to a church or community sanctioned fall festival and let the kids play games, etc. Then, we’ll hit one or two houses of people we know, so they can see the kids in their costumes. After that, it’s home to bed. The kids see this holiday as a fun chance to dress up and get candy, and I’m willing to let them do that.

  15. 16

    says

    We are Roman Catholic and we participate in Halloween, as my husband and I did growing up. We have always looked at Halloween in a religious light because Halloween is an abbreviation of “All Hallows Eve” and hallowed means holy.

    The Catholic Church celebrates All Saints Day on Nov 1 and All Souls Day on November 2. This is our time to remember all the holy men and women in our faith and to pray for all the souls of the faithful departed. They are very special days for us.

    I think you are correct in the idea that Halloween does not have to be about all the evil, gory, secular trappings — you can do a fun evening that shows your faith to those around you!

  16. 17

    says

    You know, we used to really struggle about this topic. Right now we are in a pretty comfortable place. As a christian, it is so easy to be cloisterd. My kids dress up. Not scary or gory (but more b/c my kids freak out at that stuff than anything.) I think it is such a personal choice. If you feel you shouldn’t be participating, you shouldn’t. But what is right for you is not right for everyone else.

    I do think I’ll draw the line at haunted houses and such when my kids are older, but maybe not.

  17. 18

    says

    I remember a Christian lady saying to me, “It’s the devil’s day…” very much like the perspective of Satan’s holiday…but the word is clear that This is the day that the Lord has made–that means every day including man made celebrations.

    So because we claim every day for Jesus, Halloween is not exempt. We dress up, give candy, and take candy. It’s such a great opportunity to get out into the neighborhood and meet people and show the world that being a Christian does not make us elite. Every day is a chance to share the gospel.

  18. 19

    says

    There are a lot of Non Christians who still celebrate Christmas. Do they celebrate the true meaning of it? No. They use it as a reason to be with family and give/receive gifts.

    Same with Halloween for us. We don’t celebrate Halloween. We simply enjoy letting our little ones dress up (which they adore) and get candy (which they adore). My husband was allowed to trick-or-treat and it didn’t ruin him. I wasn’t allowed and it didn’t ruin me.

    So in the end it’s up to each family what they choose. But I don’t think Christians should be judgmental about it if they don’t agree with you on allowing the kids to dress up.

  19. 20

    says

    Halloween is what you make of it.

    It is a day of THEATER, and drama and CANDY. it is fun and innocent.

    Do some people chose Satans path? Yes, and they do so on every other day of the year as well.

    No blood, no gore in our decor or costumes. We celebrate the joy of being young and dressing up and being silly. We celebrate Fall. We celebrate neighborhood and family. And mostly we celebrate CANDY.

  20. 21

    says

    UGH, it can be such a struggle. I’ll admit, I was in the “just ignore the day” camp when my kids were younger and we lived in Alaska. When there’s 2 feet of snow on the ground, it’s pretty easy for a pansy like me to be anti-Halloween.

    But then we moved to the fair state of Washington. What to do then? I heard all these amazing stories about our neighborhood and how they pull out the stops for Halloween. How people come from all around just to trick or treat on my street of all places! So I took a deep breath and went out that fateful night.

    And it was amazing. I was near tears as to what people are willing to do, one night a year, to make it fun for the kids. I’m talking haunted houses in people’s garages, cider and cookies for the parents, and just plain over the top hospitality.

    I would never, ever want my kids to miss out on experiencing that type of community. This is our 5th year here and I can’t WAIT for next week.

    We also do the carnival at our church and I don’t let the kids dress up in demonic things. It’s a balancing act for us. Kind of like all of the rest of life.

    So, yes, our lights are turned out on Halloween night. But that’s just because we’re out having so much fun.

  21. 22

    says

    I guess I’ll be the lone commenter on the other side? :-)

    My kids are older so it’s really not as much of an issue now but we did let our kids participate in trick or treating, carving pumpkins and the like when they were little and then stopped after a couple of years after praying and searching the scriptures specifically about it.

    We just decided we as a family didn’t want any compromise when it came to “celebrating” something based in evil and the occult. We wanted our kids to know that we took the verses in Deuteronomy 18 literally and that sometimes meant making choices about things that looked innocent enough on the outside or choosing not to read books that everyone else says are great.

    That said, we have many Christian friends who still do participate and we love them.

    Kelly McCausey has an interesting blog post on the topic
    here.

    Here’s the hard thing about the “judgement” thing that Nell mentions above. We’re not “in your face” at all about what we’ve chosen as a family on this topic. In fact, we don’t really even speak of it – we just don’t do it. But for some reason by just choosing not to participate we’re seen as judgmental. All we’d have to say is “oh, we don’t do halloween” in response to “what are you dressing up as this year?” and the assumption is there and obvious.

    So I guess I’d just caution those of you on the other side of the issue to hold judgment as well. It is something every family is free to pray, study and choose for themselves.

  22. 23

    says

    Oh, don’t get me started on this topic! ha. I don’t take Halloween seriously, it’s just a fun season at our house. We are faithful Christians and I laugh at all of the “Fall Festivals” at churches. Call it what it is… Halloween Festival!!!!

    Let the kids dress in their super hero and princess costumes. It’s all in good fun. I really pray that God doesn’t judge me based on my Halloween decorations or trick or treating. God is love and costume or not, he loves me just as I am!!

    Like the little books you are handing out. Neat idea. Brave post. Bravo to you:-)

    Okay, now come and join in on my Halloween blog party while you’re at it! ha.

  23. 24

    says

    We don’t portray it as evil- we just take it for what it is to us- a fun night to dress up and get candy. To my kids, free candy is simple, and they have fun seeing how much they can get with their friends.

  24. 25

    says

    "Instead of hiding, why not use the opportunity to shed The Light on a dark day. It would be powerful to teach your kids that we don't have to be like the world to live in the world."

    Well said.

    I said something similar to my husband when I bought our child a fun, non-scary costume the other day. I don't believe we bring honor to the devil when we, as Christians, use his holiday to share Christ's love with children. Yep, I just don't think Satan likes that. I think he'd RATHER us hole oursellves up in our homes.

    My mom is here with me. She just said, "Every day is God's day.". Amen, Mama. We're not hiding & letting the devil have his way with us. We'll be jamming to some praise music when the kiddos stop by for candy!

  25. 26

    Anonymous says

    here’s another great perspective from a respected christian author/musician John Fischer.

    http://www.fischtank.com/ft/ccmarticlesdetail.cfm?ccmarticleid=47

    He used to write for CCM magazine where the article is from, and now writes a wonderful daily devotional called “catch of the day” that I subscribe to. You can read more of his stuff at fischtank.com. He posted a similiar devotional on 10/31/07 just click on “in the tank” and scroll down to that date to read a more up-to-date perpsective. I really love his writing.

  26. 27

    says

    Wow, I am almost alone here besides Quietmom and I am not so quiet :-), and neither was she- to speak up among everyone else speaking for Halloween. First that article she mentions by Kelly McCausey is AWESOME-
    http://womenbygrace.com/spiritual-articles/why-we-dont-celebrate-halloween.html

    I posted in another Post from Resourceful Mommy http://blissfullydomestic.ning.com/forum/topic/show?id=2004667%3ATopic%3A32126&x;=1&page;=1#comments

    I am sooooo shocked honestly at all the replies here and all taking Halloween so lightly. I absolutely am not sitting here in judgment to you, please dont think I am. Seriously! :-) We do not celebrate halloween -Here is what I said over @ BlissDom-
    Your too funny that you thought this would not raise a discussion! But I think its a good discussion and also like many have said, all will have their own personal convictions. I began to question Halloween over (OMG) 19 years ago. I always celebrated as a kid, not brought up in a christian home. All of a sudden at 23 I was married and had a 9 year old son. Just the year before I had began my TRUE walk with the Lord. (saved since 14, but no leadership) I began to look at Halloween with new eyes and began researching. After all I researched about the history of halloween, I was beyond convicted by the Holy Spirit to not celebrate. People are comparing pagan traditions of Christmas, Easter etc with Halloween and when you really research them they are FAR from the same. And in the Occult World they will tell you the differences of how THEY celebrate that night. In the end- it can be so simple too-
    God has NOT given us a spirit of FEAR. Halloween is set in fear.
    I live in Orlando, Fl- with Universal Studio's Halloween Horrors nights all through Oct and also Bush GArdens version.
    You dont want to see the billboards that my city has to see every 5 miles down almost every busy road that represent these events. This is just one- there are many. (click and make bigger)Wish I could include that pic here.
    People think its cute when their kids are young, dress them up funny, get candy, It is just so innocent…?
    They will not always be young, it wont always be sweet.
    There is NOTHING edifying about halloween.
    I have an excellent relationship with my daughter and have never lied to her- no santa is not real in our house, no easter bunny, no tooth fairy. I have told her the history of all, she still got money under her pillow when she lost a tooth and even a pretty glitter trail that led to the note, from me, mommy~ the tooth fairy. We have all the family over and have egg hunts on Easter as celebrate the resurrection. She sat on Santas lap and took a picture, knowing he was just a guy, but also knowing the history of the real St Nick. and that it played no actual role in Christmas itself, the birth of Jesus.

    And you know what… today at 15, she will tell you herself how glad she is that we did things the way we did. And she is not asking to go to Halloween Horror nights like all my sisters kids are now. (All my sisters are Christians too, just not w/the same conviction of me when it comes to Halloween and Harry Potter, Or Vampire Books!)
    She sees truth and how if your only doing halloween to have fun or dress up cute- you are missing the way bigger picture.

    I am probably going to get slapped by some for this post, But I will say that I respect each persons decision to celebrate or not. My sisters and some of my friends who are All strong women of God do not have this same conviction, I have never judged them. Same for the whole Harry Potter/ Twighlight Books (Vampires).

    Its all about being truly informed, praying and listening for what God leads. And if He leads, than obey. If He doesn't~ who's to judge!

    Ok, there is my .01 worth!
    Blessings! Noelle
    PS – We are not called to judge each other but we are all being judged all the time by God for what we choose to do and participate in.We will all be held accountable. I believe you cant ju

  27. 28

    says

    I just found your blog and really enjoy it. Can you tell me where you got the little flyer? Maybe you said and I missed it. I struggle with balance in almost all areas of life. I find Halloween no different. On the one hand I too remember dressing up and stuff from when I was a kid and we had a ton of fun. But then I think as one who follows Christ am I not supposed to take all things seriously?

    At any rate my husband works late and we had our kids pretty close together. I am not comfortable going out with them by my self so we put on our homemade costumes and go to my moms to hand out candy to the kids in her area. (We don’t have many kids in ours.)

    If we look back far enough I am sure we could find evil in just about all the things we now celebrate without a second thought. I really appreciate your view of sheding light on the darkness of the day. Have a very Happy Holloween.

  28. 29

    says

    When I was growing up my parents went back and forth on Halloween…some years we did it and there was a stretch of time where they didn’t feel it was right and we went out to the movies or bowling or something. I remember having a non christian friend who would bring me a bag of candy the next day at school…so sweet!

    With our kids, we do participate. We do not do anything evil, I decorate with fall pumpkins and the kids wear cute costumes. I love getting them all dressed up. It is a great time for us to get out with our neighbors, show them the kids, talk to them, share treats. I think on our street if we didn’t participate it would send the wrong message. We want to make opportunities to spend time with our neighbors and befriend them and show them the reason for the hope we have. Now that my son is 4.5 he is noticing a lot of the ghosts, goblins, witches in stores and we have had many discussions on evil, what is evil and on glorifying God not Satan. Sometimes I fear I may give him TMI, but I don’t want to lie to him or shelter him too much either. I want him to know there is evil in this world and that Christ came and overcame evil.

  29. 30

    says

    Whew, what a read. And I must say I read them all. My seven year old dresses up everyday-a cowboy, starwars, or police officer.The best are the costumes like bandana-man. He made that one himself! Halloween is the only day he gets candy for it. We are in it only for the candy!!!!!! They have no concept of evil or darkness, because we as parents just don’t focus on that. You can make anyday a day for Christ.

  30. 32

    says

    I will put my 2 cents in for whatever it is worth. We are the family that ignores Halloween. and I absolutely agree with Quietmom, I have never been judgmental of other christians choice to celebrate or participate in halloween but I am constantly judged. If feels unfair to me. We have our reasons and I belive that each person has a truth for themselves. I struggle with some things and I am on the fence about some things but when I do make a decision I wish I wouldnt be judged for it by other Christians. We also dont belive in Santa Clause and have never told our kids about the toothfairy or easter bunny, when people ask my kids a question and my kids respond with truth, I get the LOOK. You know. The look. It makes it so much harder than it has to be and once my 7 year asked me if we were doing somthing wrong because we didnt do halloween. Now how wrong is that, my kids feeling like they did something wrong??? It hurt my heart. We were in a group once and a letter was sent out and it said, If you child does not believe in Santa please make sure they do not tell other kids. This is unfair to the children. Well doesnt that go both wayas. I would appreciate people not pushing santa on my children! I know the world not fair and I dont expect things to change but just remember this conversation goes both ways.

  31. 33

    says

    i’ve been planning to blog about this. my mom never let us dress up or anything, it was “satan’s holiday.”

    i cannot express accurately how much this hurt me as a child. it made me feel like such a FREAK!

    as a result, i got married on halloween out of spite, and to force my parents to recognize me on that day. it’s now my favorite holiday and i celebrate it with gusto.

    please people, don’t do this to your kids! i am proof of how hurtful it is!

  32. 34

    says

    I plan on blogging this topic too. I’m not really for the people, who call themselves Christian, and definitely do not look LOVING to anybody who sees them.

    I’m also not for sacrificing animals or practicing witchcraft.

    So we dress up, we play, we make ourselves sick on candy. And I mean sick. Anything and everything that they can stuff in their mouths. And then we toss it before bedtime. That’s it. Done deal. No halloween candy until Christmas in our house. Dentists around here will actually buy your candy from you. $4/ lb type of deal.

    Since I also don’t seize the opportunity to witness any other time of the year (not that this is a good thing), I will not seize this opportunity to stuff kids treat bags with Christian tracts.

    Now, what about the teenagers after dark who come to get candy without a costume?

  33. 35

    says

    wow. lotsa passion here. I agree that this is a conscience issue and as such each person should do as he is convinced in his heart and not pass judgement. I agree that every day is the Lord’s and should be claimed and lived to the utmost for His glory. I agree there is no harm in dressing up and collecting candy. Our kids dress up all the time and we buy them candy quite a bit, but we don’t take part in the merriment on the date of the original Samhain festival by “mimicking” the things that originally made up that festival (dressing up to not be recognized by the roaming dead, going door to door to (now all in good fun mind you) threaten tricks on good homes if they don’t indulge you, leaving jackolanterns lit by the front door to scare off other spirits by tricking them into believing that Jack the Ghost is at your house). Sure these things are not even recognizable in the celebrations of today, but is that a good thing? Is being so far removed from the origins and so “played down” make it acceptable? Maybe, probably yes. I don’t think when we stand before Jesus we are going to get brownie points for not taking part in Haloween, but that’s not the point.

    The point is that each of us must answer to how we responded to our conscience. And each one of us must be humble enough to realize that our conscience is a guide. And what might be wrong at one stage in our life (because of our maturity or lack thereof) might become okay at another point.

    God might tell me at one point to refrain from all acoholic beverage, for sake of example, for the sake of protecting me from a slippery slope. If I reach a point in life where alcohol would not be a threat to me or cause friction in my relationships, my conscience might come to a point of peace with it.

    Right now our conscience says we don’t need to make this day a personal day of celebration and take the initiative to make it one for our kids. When they reach ages of more independence (12 we’re thinking) we will allow them to wrestle it out for themselves and if they want to celebrate the day we will let them make that choice for themselves based on their own conscience.

  34. 36

    says

    sorry, I just convicted about writing that after having made a conscious decision last year to not discuss this topic ever again with other people based on Romans 14:22 “your beliefs about these things should be kept secret between you and God” (and the whole chapter). I think this is something we should all shut up about because the more we talk about it, the more damage appears to be done. having said that, can you please delete my earlier post? Thanks!

  35. 37

    says

    I grew up as a Pastor’s Kid and we always did the trick or treating thing. We had rules about our costumes, mainly because of money. But I want to direct you to another blog post that pretty much sums up what I think about Christians participating Halloween.

    http://thesift.atlblogs.com/archives/016424.html

    This is my favorite paragraph:

    “It is not “the devil’s day”. It is actually the very opposite. Satan has been thwarted, Christ has won the victory, and this is a day of celebration! We remember those saints that have gone on before us, and laugh at the defeat of our enemy. More from Jim Jordan: “This is why the custom arose of portraying Satan in a ridiculous red suit with horns and a tail. Nobody thinks the devil really looks like this; the Bible teaches that he is the fallen Arch-Cherub. Rather, the idea is to ridicule him because he has lost the battle with Jesus and he no longer has power over us.” Halloween is a day of mockery. It reduces the power of Satan to plastic fangs and fake blood… it is a day when the ghoulish and ghastly are really nothing more than peeled grapes in a bowl, cold cooked spaghetti. It is a day when someone says, “BOO!” and we laugh. “

    Anyway, I know this is my first comment on your blog (getting here from twitter, BTW), so I hope you don’t mind me just jumping in on the topic.

  36. 38

    says

    I almost didn’t comment because I am super non-confrontational!

    We do not celebrate Halloween (which I keep to myself as much as possible) and I never judge any other family for their participation and love seeing kids in cute little costumes. I feel that others judge me and think that we are “bad parents” for not participating.

    It is a very personal decision that we made only after much consideration, reading of scripture, and prayer. And that is what we felt that God was calling our family to do – He may be leading your family to do something completely different.

    Our son can dress up in costumes any time during the year (but he doesn’t really like to) and there is never a time that we don’t have candy in the house! I just asked my son (he’s 9 and rather practical)if he wishes that he could participate in Halloween and he said no! He thinks the idea of dressing up and asking people for candy is “lame” – sorry – maybe that’s his age or something – we’ve never told him anything like that. :)

    Anyway, we just treat it as any other day, but we do usually go out to dinner to a nice family restaurant as there’s no wait – everybody else is at home getting costumes on and heading out. And it beats being at home feeling like you have to hide in your own home because you are the oddball in the neighborhood.

    So I am not judging anybody! You should prayerfully consider it as a family and do what God calls you to do!

    And I don’t think this “discussion” is damaging – it’s nice to hear what others are doing and what their reasons are. We are all created different, after all. Friendly discussions are always a good thing!

    Thanks, Kristen for bringing it up. And I love the booklets you’re handing out.

  37. 39

    Anonymous says

    Wow! These are all really good comments, and I did read them all. Women can be one another’s worst enemies, and tear each other apart over topics like this…so with that said, brave post. As for my family, I do let the kids trick or treat. This will be my oldest’s last year, as he is getting too big. We don’t look at it as the Devil’s holiday, as there are different views historically on this, and while I am not a historian – neither are my children. We don’t bring evil into it – there is evil in everything if you look hard enough, and I don’t intend to do that to my kids. They are in it for the candy – trick or treating for candy had nothing to do with the occult version of this holiday.

  38. 40

    says

    Can’t we all just get along. I once had a Christian tell me that Halloween was wrong because there was nothing about that holiday that benefited families or God.

    Really, cause on Halloween every year my hubby’s divorced parents both come over and take my kids trick or treating. Cause that was one of the holidays they came together for when my hubby was growing up. Sure, we could tell them that the holiday is unholy and blah, blah, but my girls are restricted in their costumes and we live in a very Christian neighborhood and so it is just a chance for family to get together and have some fun.

    To me this is a non issue and everyone’s participation needs to be respected.

  39. 42

    says

    I’ve thought long and hard on this topic and researched everything related to Halloween and prayed and wrangled. And I decided to not participate in the holiday at all. I feel at peace with my decision, but you won’t hear me putting down other families that choose differently. I think you’re plan is great!

  40. 43

    says

    It may be too late to chime in on this discussion but I suggest this article on the subject:
    http://stevebrownetc.com/blogs/the-guest-room/internet-monk-halloween-rant/
    My kids are all dressing up and trick or treating, just like I did when I was a kid, and they all love Jesus, just like I do.
    I think sometimes Christians give Satan too much power in their lives by allowing themselves to withdraw from things that are simply not on God’s radar screen.

  41. 44

    says

    I’m Catholic and grew up with Halloween, but it always was a fun, not a violent, holiday. For decorations, I keep things cute and not gory. My kids can dress up at their school as long as its not gory or violent. I really got tired of other catholic parents chewing me out (at an old job) because I let my kids celebrate. They are kids for such a short time and if my MIL taking them trick or treating and dressing up makes them happy one day a year, I’m ok with that.
    I think as Christian and Catholic parents, we have way bigger battles in our parenting paths to face.

  42. 45

    says

    Interesting reading! It all varies so much, doesn’t it? I was gonna comment then I decided NOT to comment so I commented on my decision to not comment.

    ;-)

    Happy Saturday.

  43. 46

    says

    My husband posted about this on his blog.
    http://fireballspulpit.blogspot.com At first, I thought he was a little off – letting people know what we do for Halloween. I think I was a little worried what people would think about a Pastor’s family going out. But then I thought, why not let people know what we do. We are not doing anything scary. We are promoting Christ and the church.

    I had friends who would hide out in their homes on Halloween while growing up. They missed such a good opportunity to share the Gospel.

    I have to tell you I LOVE your blog!

  44. 47

    nomore says

    I really like this post. I feel the same way about the horror movies and scary stories, things like that have left scars on my heart since childhood. – But, praise God! – he is so good! In Him, he heals!

    I researched Halloween a couple years ago and found that it originated as a Christian holiday to begin with years and years ago. “Hallow” meaning holy, and “een” meaning evening. It was a time for the Christian community to come together to remember and honor the deaths of fellow saints who fought the good fight, and finally were martyred for the cause of Christ.

    Then somewhere down the line it became a ‘pagan’ holiday.

    But, I agree with you! We Christians can get out there and let our lights shine! We hand out little tracts (sometimes handmade) to those we get candy from and vice versa. We also do costumes that are not scary, but fun!

    I’m kinda new to blog world so my blog is young, but feel free to visit anytime! Deanna

  45. 48

    Anonymous says

  46. 49

    Lacey C. says

    Hi Kristin,

    I am clicking over here from the link you put on today’s post. I have been looking everywhere for a good tract to pass out on Halloween. Is there a link to the one you use? I am at laceyrose(dot)1(at)juno.com

    Thank you for this blog where we can all respectfully share our opinions. We do not celebrate Halloween. We are very intentional in all that we do and have researched, studied, prayed, and given careful thought. The trick-or-treating, jack-o-lanterns, witches, candles, EVERYTHING, has meaning and history behind it. We are just as thoughtful and intentional with every other holiday as well. Our family will not participate in Halloween because it is not harmless. My own aunt fostered a child that was saved from a sacrifice ceremony on Halloween. His twin brother had already been killed but someone tipped the cops just in time to save the other brother. We strive to do everything to the glory of God, and so we really do our research before we make any “harmless” traditions with our kids.

    We should not be naive, but we should not neglect this great opportunity to show love and compassion to all our neighbors! When else do I have all the neighbor kids knocking at my door? So we do hand out candy with scripture attached.

    Blessings!

  47. 50

    says

    Well I am also one of the few that share an alternate view. When we read the Old Testament we see many times where God told his people not to observe the new moons and festivals of their neighbors. (This was forbidden.) They were not to practice their rituals or celebrations. To do so was a compromise and was seen as unfaithfulness to God.

    Now what about today?. Would Halloween be considered a Christian or Worldly festival? I know in our “hearts” most Christians are not celebrating anything Satanic or evil. But their hands, and feet walk up and down streets to doors asking for candy. Many decorate their homes with such non God honoring images, etc.
    The day is celebrated with tombstones, spiders, witches, goblins, etc. I don’t want my children going up to a house covered in spider webs, ugly pumpkin heads, ghosts hanging from trees, and scary music going on, etc.

    I am not judging those that think it is no big deal. (But I wonder how much time one really spends in prayer and seeking God for HIS mind on the matter. (Many times it is OUR mind on the matter, not his.) Because we want to justify our own actions. If we really study the Bible out -where is the MIND of God on the matter.

    I also feel that most Christians that do celebrate do judge our family for our position. Just the other day I had someone look at me as if I was from another planet when I said we don’t celebrate Halloween. (And we don’t celebrate- by not participating in the events and actions that make the day what it is.)

    The other thing I really wonder is : If Jesus were here on earth today, what would he dress up as? Would he lead my kids around the blocks dressed up and have them go “trick or treating”with him? Would he go to a costume party? Well maybe he could go as the Apostle Paul or Ellijah the Prophet. But I just cannot imagine it. I cannot imagine him thinking it was okay to see the glorification of things dark, ugly, and death. Tombstones don’t glorify God, Jesus defeated Death, Hell and the Grave and Satan as well. I cannot imagine him organizing a “trunk or treat” at a church or anything of the sort.

    As Christians we are under Grace, not law. So God wants our hearts-not us doing something because we feel it is a religious “Rule” of whether we can or cannot celebrate the day.

    :So to sum it up: We do not celebrate Holidays that do not glorify God. (Nor do we participate in pagan rituals or non Christian parts of other Holidays that do glorify God. Examples-Santa, the Easter Bunny etc.)
    When we celebrate something we can leave our children a legacy of why we do celebrate it and what it means to honor God in everything we do. I want my kids to imitate Jesus -and have the mind of Christ.

    Blessings,

  48. 51

    says

    This product does not require sunbathing or messing with gooey unmanageable creams or complicated sprays.
    The best way to exfoliate is to sit in a hot Jacuzzi for 20 minutes until you feel
    your dead skin cells have fully absorbed as much water as possible or until your
    fingers become wrinkly. Our solution has been well-tested in order to ensure
    that it looks exactly like a natural tan.

    my site :: fake tanning gone wrong

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>