Celebrate Halloween in a Catholic way...
As Catholics, should we celebrate the “devil’s holiday,” so to speak, by dressing up as witches, devils, demons, or even “innocent” characters from movies or books? If this day is evil, why do we celebrate Halloween? This is a controversial subject at best this time of year. Some say this day has pagan origins, but we are going to focus on the Catholic side of things.
The real name of Halloween is “All Hallows Eve,” and it is the day before All Saints Day in the Catholic Church. Traditionally, an eve of a feast is a day for penance, not dressing up like werewolves! All Hallows Eve is also the pre-cursor to the “Day of the Dead,” All Souls Day – now November 2 in the Catholic Church.
Catholic News Agency reported:
Halloween “is not as innocent as dressing up as a witch and creating jack-o-lanterns with scary looking faces.” Father Joan Maria Canals of the Committee on the Liturgy of the Spanish Bishops’ Conference told La Razon that the problem with Halloween is its connection to “occultism and anti-Christianity.”
Parents should “be conscious and channel the meaning of the day towards that which is good and beautiful instead of towards terror, fear and death itself,” he added. (Catholic News Agency)
So, as parents we can allow our children to celebrate, but we can define the celebration of “All Hallows Eve” by encouraging our little ones dress up as saints.
Now, if you are from a Mexican descent as I am, you may also want to celebrate the “Day of the Dead.” This is done by honoring the loved ones that have passed from our families. Here are some articles on this celebration if you wish to research further:
Day of the Dead (Catholic.org)
Why do Catholics celebrate Day of the Dead? (Aleteia.org)
Celebrating All Hallows Eve in a Catholic way First, have your child choose a saint they like the most. Perhaps it is St. John of the Cross or St. Rose! Then they should dress up like their favorite saint. St. John would need a cross or crucifix – perhaps make a special one for him to carry. St. Rose should dress in white and wear a crown of roses and perhaps add in a black veil, as she was a Dominican tertiary.
Next, think of a party theme idea! I have been to various All Saints parties – there are many ways to do this. One way is to have a March of the Saints and maybe a guess the saint game! First of all, have all the “saints” march together, down your street if you are hosting a party, or if at a church, go around the block and come back to the church hall.
Then, if you have priests in attendance, they can guess the saint. If you have nuns in your chapel, maybe they could be the ones guessing. Anyway, this will take some time; the other partygoers can have snacks while the guessing game is going on. If you have a church where you have classrooms, you can decorate the doors with particular saints if so desired and then hand out candy at each door – or the candy can be handed out in the hall or at your home. Other games can be played as well, such as a ring toss. Use your imagination! If you need ideas, read the book Saints and Seasons of the Liturgical Year from Catholic Heritage.
There is also another tradition called “Soul cakes” where you pray for a person that has passed soul. The name of the person is put on candy or food (like if the host makes cupcakes or donuts – you can attach a name of a departed person on a card or sticker) – then the person eating the food must also remember to pray for that soul that has passed! I really like this tradition as it ties the Catholic All Souls Day to All Hallows Eve, and you are tying a much-needed prayer for the Holy Souls that have passed from this life.
End your party with singing some songs about saints and holy souls!
Now, that you know how to properly host a All Hallows Eve party - yes, Catholics can definitely celebrate Halloween in this wonderful way!
Will you host your own party this year or find a way to celebrate as a saint? What saint will you be? Can you guess the saints below?
Should Catholics Celebrate Halloween?
Technically the proper name for Halloween is "All Hallows' Eve" and yes it is OK to celebrate it in the Catholic tradition of things. We should be celebrating saints that have died - since the next day is All Saints Day! Secondly, in the Traditional Latin Mass calendar, Christ the King Feast day happens to land on Halloween this year - so maybe trade in the idea of ghosts and goblins to being Knight or a King! Christ is King of our Hearts and this is a great feast day to celebrate!
One of these days I may just make a class just for information about the traditions and feast days of the Catholic Church.
Our Bereavement course sale ends on November 1st - so get in for good deal for only $77.00 - go here to learn more!
Anyway, so what's on the menu for end of October or November at Catholic Doula?
Well, first of all we are working on the Magnificat Doula Certification for fertility doula class - and I made a page where you can signup for the waitlist. So, if you want to do that please go here. https://mailchi.mp/b8c33a0bc763/magnificatdoula1
Then we are still hosting our herbal course - we have decided to do a live over 2 nights and then the rest of the class is your modules and you make one herb. I may also send you some mini videos extras as bonus! Plus, I put it on sale for less only $77. So, go here to signup!!
November we are going to do business doula class and rebozo classes - so look for that information here for business and here for rebozo classes!! We hope you will join us on one of those dates!!
I also may do herbs again in December if we have enough interest.
I am considering offering GIFT CARDS for Christmas time - a Gift card could be purchased for $50-$200 to go towards a small class or big class.
October is usually a busy month for everyone -but let's hope you can make time for a Doing Business the Doula webinar - we set up 2 dates for our live class - they both will make if we have someone signup - choose October 13 or October 22nd. Be prepared for 2 hour with break class! Learn more about the doula business class here!
November we are offering our fall herbal class (2-3 class meetings) - enroll early for a special bonus herb to be sent to you!! This herbal class will also include a replay of our mini-belly binding class from our postpartum class. Read more here about the herbal class and how to enroll!
Bereavement class is currently still self-pace and we are considering an update of the course for us to add it to Magnificat Childbirth Educator Thinkific platform. So, we are discounting the current class from October 2nd-October 15th in honor of bereavement doula month - become a certified sorrowful doula! Learn more at this link about the course!
December we will probably be taking some time off - usually it is our slowest month - however, self-pace classes will always be available. And we may still run a surprise sale ! We look forward to serving you again in the new year. We may even have something around Epiphany (Jan. 6th) live class - so look for details on that later on in this year!
Want to be on our mailing list and are not getting Sacred sisters doula news or Marian Mother's news? Email us here and say "add to newsletter" - get specific if you want. Marian mother's news has items more aimed at mothers and parent classes while Sacred Sisters has info for doulas!
Also, since today is St. Therese's feast day - it is time to start a novena to her - so here's the novena link. Ask her to send you a rose - I am for sure!!
God Bless! Oh, in our next blog we will announce more about Rebozo workshop most likely for mid or late October!
Juliana Larsen is the author of the Catholic Doula Blog.