Why we don’t celebrate Halloween


It’s that time of year again, where I feel like a total oddball mother for not letting my kids be immersed in all the ghoulishness and celebration of All that is Evil known as Halloween.  My husband is even “worse” than I am;  he has the kids turn their heads when we pass houses that are decorated for the season.

I was going to do a whole writeup on this, but then was alerted (by Daja at Gombojav Tribe) to a post from Milehimama on the very topic.  It’s a good post, and I heartily echo 99% of it (the other one percent being that Milehimama is Catholic, and instead, celebrates the following day, All Saints’ Day, which we don’t do).

In short, the day — really, it’s turned into the whole month — is a celebration of everything that I am mothering against!  Fear, gluttony, selfishness, blackmail, evil, the grotesque… It’s all wrapped up in candy, and sold as a fun holiday for children!!  Ugh.  I don’t want to be the starchy mom with her finger wagging, quoting Bible verses, but I can’t help but recall, over and over and over,

  7For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Please do read.


About Karen Joy

I'm a partially-homeschooling mother of six -- 3 boys ages 19, 17 and 15 years old, and three girls: 11, 8, and 3. I like birding, reading, writing, organic gardening, singing, playing guitar, hiking, the outdoors, and books. I very casually lead a very large group of homeschooling families in the Phoenix area. I have a dear hubby who designs homes for a local home builder and who is the worship pastor of our church. I live in the desert, which I used to hate, but now appreciate.

Posted on October 29, 2007, in Christian Living, Motherhood, Parenting, Sad Things, Scary stuff, The Kids. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. That was a verse I used with my two older kids when we stepped away from celebrating Halloween.

    Thanks for sharing those blog post links. I really needed those today!

  2. We didn’t really celebrate Hallowe’en in UK when I was young, although I think in recent years it has become more popular. I don’t know what is true for Australia. I notice the shops are full of Hallowe’en merchandise but I don’t see anyone actively celebrating it. Sometimes I think these holidays are a big excuse for marketing! In any case, it all seems largely irrelevant to me. If I was better Catholic I would celebrate All Saint’s Day but I have very sad memories of a mass I went to once on that day and so avoid it. Now the biggie in UK when I was young was Guy Fawkes Night on November 5th, when an effigy of a Catholic terrorist is burnt on a pyre! My Grandma used to say we shouldn’t celebrate it but we all looked forward to it much more than Hallowe’en. Sigh… I’m glad Australia doesn’t have that holiday! That is one thing I really don’t want to have to explain to Kiko…

  3. With all respect to your feelings, I see it differently. My family and church celebrate the Day of the Dead and Halloween, and it isn’t about embracing fear and evil – it’s about looking at what is “scary” (Death) and sad (losing loved ones, grief), and bringing the joy and the light of community and faith so that we need not fear and mourn alone. All the fun and games and decorations are part of making light of our fears, of looking at them but not letting them be real or overcome us. For my Sunday school lesson, we read “There’s a Nightmare in My Closet” and talked about how our fears aren’t so scary if we bring them out to look at them – that’s how I see this holiday. I’m not trying to change anyone’s mind, but I did want to give a different perspective on the issue.

  4. Mrs. N ~ Glad to help!!

    Helen ~ I didn’t know that’s what Guy Fawkes Night was about! Golly, how morbid! And, it seems awfully sad to me, like one more thing to pit Protestants against Catholics and vice versa. 😦

    Sara ~ I appreciate your input. I can totally see the idea of laughing in the face of fears… But… you mention about “not letting [fears] be real” when, in actuality, there IS evil in the world, and it IS real. That’s one of the main things about it that bothers me; it’s a holiday that both glorifies and trivializes evil… But, OTOH, it’s true that when fears stay hidden, they grow, and it IS good to bring things out into the light and take a good look at them.

    John ~ I thought for sure that the cartoon would actually mock my viewpoint, given that it’s The Onion, after all. I was nicely surprised.

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