- I learned something new yesterday, something liberating, that freed me from decades of guilt. I raised my nine children in the shadow of other dedicated Catholic mothers, mostly homeschoolers, who thought that Halloween was evil, dedicated to witches. Their children were not allowed to celebrate but went to a church basement ( which was an hour away from us) to celebrate All Saints Eve. However I felt that my children suffered enough alienation from their peers that I did not want to deny them the joy and creative fun that surrounded this cultural, childhood tradition.
- GUESS WHAT!! HALLOWEEN IS CATHOLIC!
I wish I had been able to read Father Steve Grunow’s research and commentary 30 years ago. He would have saved me a lot of grief because, although I let my kids celebrate Halloween, often dressed as saint. I felt guilty.
Halloween does not have pagan roots but rather Catholic. Halloween (or “All Hallows Eve”) is the festive precursor to the celebration of the Church’s public commemoration of All Saints Day.
And this is precisely why Protestant Christians dislike Halloween and all other Catholic Festivities.The public festivals of the Catholic Faith were characterized as a corrupting and dangerous form of paganism. Halloween with all its carousing and shenanigans was especially problematic, as it represented the incursion of a specifically Catholic cultural form into a public life that was supposed to be Protestant. Everything associated with these Catholic festivities was caricatured as pagan and the association stuck with even the Catholics internalizing the critique and believing that their own customs were holdovers from paganism. Read Father Steve Grunow’s eye-opening article.
Today is All Saints Day which celebrates the lives of all Christians
who have died in a state of grace.
This is the first All Saints Day that I can commemorate
my newly discovered patron Saint Melania!!!
- However, holiness is for every baptized person, regardless of personality type, career, age, race, or marital status. Leon Bloy, a French Catholic writer, once said “the only tragedy in life is not to become a saint.” Holiness is about realizing our deepest, greatest potential, becoming who we were truly destined to be.
- The problem is most of us go about becoming saints all the wrong way! We try to hard, concentrating on our own piety, discipline and not on the saving power of Jesus Christ. In fact the best way to become holy is to quit trying so hard. I discovered that I just got in God’s way. Surrender, giving up control however is the hardest thing for humans to do because it is all about giving up our pride, realizing that we cannot save ourselves. Period, We need a Healer, a Saviour