Finding God In Halloween

Few things in the world delight God more than community between people. Community is the greatest way in which a person can begin and sustain a relationship of love. Jesus placed a great deal of hope in the power of relationships. This is the power of the incarnation, that God would speak to us through other people. He said that the world would know God by the way his loved each other. And, that the Church would be known as the body of Christ. Their relationships with God and with each other revealed the image of God to the world (Though obviously there are personal (interventions) and natural revelations (creation) ). The study of Jewish culture reveals that everything is based upon the community in which you are raised in. Your identity is found within it. The great spiritual teacher Jean Vanier teaches that three things build community: 1. People praying with one another. 2. People eating with each other. 3. People celebrating occasions in each others’ presence.

There is a certain spiritual abuse that happens when people over-idealize the separation from the world. There is far greater damage done by celebrating a political candidate’s victory in the name of God than by having a Halloween party. There is a certain logical trust that if you let your kids go trick-or-treating then most likely, they won’t be participating in some form of dehumanizing witchcraft when they get older. Hopefully, we can take the celebration of Halloween as a sign to build deeper relationships with our children, our friends, or the neighbors we hand candy out to. Just because Halloween doesn’t offer some apparent spiritual virtue to our lives doesn’t mean we should dismiss it (otherwise, why would we celebrate Thanksgiving, or Mothers/Fathers day?). Halloween should be a day, like every other day, where we can learn to celebrate one another. On this day, we can just celebrate the personal quirkiness and eccentric choices over others’ apparel.

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6 thoughts on “Finding God In Halloween

  1. Yvonne Shek says:

    Love this! Thank you!

  2. As a Christian who helps build and run a Charity haunt in MN, I completely agree!

    Watching the community we work in come out and spend time laughing and talking with one another is one the biggest reasons we spend so much time putting this event on for no money. We save and spend money out of our own pockets so that we can have people come to our event and donate to the local food shelf instead of paying us the price of admission. The community does an AMAZING job of coming together to make this an event worth putting on.

    If you would like to participate in a fun and family friendly charity event in Cottage Grove, MN, please head to http://www.facebook.com/nightmaregrove

  3. Thanks for this Mike-great thoughts on Halloween & community. We take part in our local Halloween expressions (candy; parade) and it’s a great way to bond and get to know our neighbors better.

  4. Shouldn’t we be celebrating Reformation Day instead of Halloween? I would think remembering the people that have come before us would be more important.

  5. Melody Bacon says:

    I appreciate your insights into the communal aspect of this day – so often we forget that being gracious (emphasis on grace) and kind, reaching out to connect with others, is really at the center of Christian practice.

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