When I was growing up, my family held very strong opinions about Halloween. It’s an evil holiday, celebrating demons and devil, and we must stay as far away from it as possible. In fact, we didn’t even go to school on that day. On Halloween night we would close all the blinds, turn off the lights, and maybe spend the evening in the kitchen or a room that wasn’t facing the road. Trick-or-treaters wouldn’t see any lights and would skip our house.
Now that I’m older and teaching kids at public school as well as Sunday school, I became more aware of the controversy revolving around this holiday. Public schools embrace this holiday and many assignments and crafts are affected. Lots of Christian families have started to accept the holiday as well, sending their kids off in costumes to trick-or-treat. Other families continue to “hide” and want nothing to do with this holiday. Still others make an attempt to “redeem” the holiday by dressing up as angels and trying to share the gospel. Or they hand out flyers or Bibles with or instead of candy.
The roots of Halloween are pagan: people were dressing up with scary masks to scare off the evil spirits roaming the streets at the end of October. There are numerous stories explaining the exact origin with slightly different twists in various cultures and countries. However, they all have something in common, which is the concept of evil, fear, dead people’s spirits, demons, goblins, witchcraft, etc.
For a Christian person, this is not something to associate with. By the grace of God, we have been given a chance for a new life in Jesus, and we need not fear. We don’t need to “hide” away from the world on Halloween. At the same time, if we try to share the gospel on Halloween ONLY and give out pamphlets or Bibles, we might not be making the difference we hope we are. It may be a bit hypocritical, in fact. A truly Christian person will be a shining light always, no matter what.
My husband helped explain Halloween holiday to the Sunday class we were teaching: Halloween is not our holiday. Same concept as with Rosh Hashanah, or Ramadan; those are not our holidays, so we don’t celebrate them. Now Thanksgiving, and Christmas, and Easter, ARE our holidays, thus we celebrate them. At school I simply state I don’t celebrate this holiday. Since it’s not my classroom, I cannot quite control the activities and crafts that take place, but I can state my position.