Opinion: Should Christians Celebrate Haloween

by Katelyn Minder

“Halloween: noun, the evening of October 31; the eve of All Saints’ Day; All Hallows Eve: observed especially by children in costumes who solicit candy,” often by threatening minor pranks. Sounds pretty harmless, right? Wrong. I mean, we have all seen the harm that costumes can do. Come on people, the clowns…need I say more?

The question becomes: Is it permissible for Christians to celebrate Halloween?

A quick overview about the origin of Halloween: Celts in Britain celebrated a holiday they called Samhain. The holiday consisted of dancing around bonfires to ward off ghosts. They believed ghosts of the dead were allowed to return to earth on this day. By dressing in costumes and offering sacrifices to pagan deities, they hoped they may be spared.

In the 700s Pope Gregory III created All Saints’ Day, a holiday to celebrate saints and martyrs, which was held on November 1. This holiday took some of the traditions of Samhain and All Hallows Eve (Halloween) was celebrated the evening before All Saints’ Day. Many believe this was a move to make a pagan tradition a religious one. For more information on the origin of Halloween, visit History.com.

While this may have been a very intelligent ploy on the part of Pope Gregory III to unite the culture of an area and the religious system, can believers really use the premise of All Saints’ Day as justification to celebrate an originally pagan holiday? That’s debatable.

We read in 1 Corinthians 10:23: “Everything is permissible, but not everything is helpful.” So, while celebrating Halloween may be permitted by a lot of believers, it may not be beneficial. Christians are called to be a light in the world, not part of it.

Don’t get me wrong, spotting kids dressed up as their favorite cartoon character or animal is adorable and fun for them. However, as young adults who can perceive the evils of this world and understand that, as Christians, we are the light of the world, should we really be watching movies that celebrate evil and go to haunted houses that make light of Hell?

I cannot tell you that celebrating Halloween is wrong for you. I simply ask that you use discernment in participating in activities that celebrate darkness instead of light. So maybe this year, instead of going to a haunted house or watching a scary movie, try to spread some light around this holiday.