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  • DO YOU OR YOUR CHILDREN CELEBRATE HALLOWEEN?

    26 posts, 19 voices, 678 views, started Oct 16, 2008

    Posted on Thursday, October 16, 2008 by Dana Arcuri

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    • Through the years, I have had mixed emotions about celebrating Halloween and allowing my kids to participate in trick or treating.  As a Christian, I want my children to be raised to
      do everything that glorifies our Heavenly Father.  There have been years in which my kids would attend a Harvest Fest at a local church for fun activities, food and candy.  Other years, after my kids begged me to dress up and go trick or treating in the neighborhood, I agreed to let them.  There are pro’s and con’s about celebrating Halloween.

      So how about you and your kids?  Share your experiences about what whether you and your kids trick or treat, attend church activities or not celebrate at all.

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          Darla5 wrote Oct 16, 2008
        • This is a topic that comes up alot in churches.

          I believe it is how YOU choose to celebrate it. I love the Lord and my Grandfather was a Pentecostal preacher for 55 years. We have always been active in church. We always decorated for Halloween, dressed up for Halloween.

          Some of the best memories of my childhood is Halloween. Oh ... how I loved to dress up and get candy. We would get a pillowcase because the plastic pumkins did not hold enough.  Tons of us kids went together. Afterwards we would pour it all out on the floor and Mom would check all the candy for us. Excitement filled the air.

          My Mom’s birthday is Halloween. So after Trick or Treating it was Birthday party time.

          My kids are 19 and 21. We planned months in advance what their costumes would be. I know some of their fondest memories are Halloween. Great pictures and priceless videos are of this day. I think my daughter would still go trick or treating if she could. She would look a little strange at 19. She still loves this time of year.

          I am sure most of us did this as kids and look at us...We turned out just fine.

          It is all how we choose to look at it. We set the traditions in our home. Make it a fun one.



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          Rene' Grandon wrote Oct 16, 2008
        • I agree with Darla,my kids are 19 and 20. They actually did both we did the harvest fest at church. They also did trick or treating around neighborhood we lived in.
          It was just something fun. They lost interest once they hit high school.

          Ciao,
          Bella



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          Cindylouwho1966 wrote Oct 16, 2008
        • On a selfish note, I do not have kids, so I don’t like being expected to dole out freebies.

          On a phobia note, I don’t like when people I don’t know come to my door. I had an experience with a peeper once, and to this day I generally will not answer my door to strangers.

          On a pet-mom note, the dog is gonna freak out.

          On an economical note, everyone is tightening their belts right now.  

          Just one gal’s opinion!!!!



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          Dee Dee Shaw wrote Oct 16, 2008
        • We don’t celebrate Halloween or Christmas (gasp!) My kids still love to play dress up though. And I will sometimes buy leftover candy in reasonable quantities. We have livedmost of our lives out in the country and haven’t had visitors. When we lived in town, we would turn out all the lights and watch a movie, or go somewhere else. I am like Lu... not so fond of strangers, and think it is for the most part a celebration of overindulgence (similar to Christmas in many ways - including the origin.)



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          Mary Clark wrote Oct 16, 2008
        • I love Halloween.  Always have.  Love decorating too. As a Christian...I don’t look at Halloween as being “bad“...“evil“...but just a fun time to dress up as whatever....laugh....and have fun.  I don’t emphasize  whatever the history is...or the meaning really...to me...when I think of Halloween...I think of costumes, trick or treating...fellowship.....laughter....making memories.. carving pumpkins....hay rides.....etc.  

          When my father inlaw was living his birthday was Halloween and we too would celebrate his birthday after trick or treating.  

          Now...I always cook a pot of chili....have my candy ready.....and sit by the door to hand out and my son loves to put on his camoflauge leaf suit and he hides in the bushes and scares some of our visitors.  We have the best time....but we also feel very safe in our neighborhood too.
          I’m sure the safety depends on where you live.  

          You know the Lord knows in my heart what I believe.....and he knows I’m not celebrating something evil.  It’s all about what you make it out to be..and what is in your heart.  To each their own is what I say.



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          Chrissyandcoco wrote Oct 16, 2008
        • I’m like many of you.  I enjoy Halloween for all of the right reasons but I understand the over indulgence and concerns of evil. We never allowed our three children to dress up or celebrate evil and they never wanted to. We have never been fond of scary movies and do not watch them either.  

           I always cooked at church when our children were young (with a group of women) for our Wednesday night program of about 300 people or so. We had a church celebration like Holyween.  I would make their costumes usually for our church party and then they would wear it around our close knit neighborhood on Halloween. We only made a big deal out of family time carving the cute pumpkins that my husband has always enjoyed doing.  His carved faces always look like the Mr. Potatoe Head toy. We would also watch funny cartoons and we plan to continue the family tradition with our grand babies.  That way it takes the focus off of anything negative. And since we have a two year old grand daughter he is more excited to pumpkin carve again and show her off to all of the friends and neighbors! She is going to be a ladybug. She showed up at our house last year as Dumbo the elephant and my husband was so excited to carry her around that he picking her up before changing out of his dress suit from work and off they went.  He carried her to all of the houses on our street.  He could not wait to hear what she was going to be this year. You would have to know my husband...the serious, focused and methodical man turns to MUSH! She is Opa's girl. I’ll post pictures of course!
          Happy everyday!
          Gayle



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          Ms-kay wrote Oct 17, 2008
        • Halloween is a big deal to many people for many reasons.  

          When I was younger there was no religious significance involved in either the day itself or in such elements as pumpkins or costumes. It's true that such things as jack-o'-lanterns, bonfires and black cats, which are part of the Halloween tradition, may have roots in pre-Christian activities. But when children (mine included) go trick-or-treating or visit “haunted houses” at the local shopping center, they are not thinking about participating in any religious festivities at all. They are just trying to “have fun” as they would at a movie or amusement park.  

          Most Christians believe they can celebrate Halloween (in some respects) as a purely secular day of fun. We should remember that much of the television we watch and many movies we see are what we often call “mindless entertainment.” Many other things we do for fun, we do precisely for entertainment and for no other reason.  

          Many people see trick-or-treating or visiting a haunted house as being in the same category. It's just plain fun, and has no spiritual, religious or enduring significance. Viewed on that basis, participating in various Halloween fun activities wouldn’t be any different than going to Disneyland's “haunted house” or enjoying similar entertainment.

          Should Christians and their children participate in Halloween activities if they are unsure whether it is the right thing to do or are convinced it is wrong? The Bible teaches us that we should be fully persuaded in our own minds about these things—either pro or con. But we should not judge or condemn others who are of a different persuasion.



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          Deb Link wrote Oct 17, 2008
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          Denise Alleyne-Hill wrote Oct 17, 2008
        • I’ve never celebrated Halloween, even though I wasn’t raised in a religious home...My mum never believed in it. Now that I am a mum and we are Christians, our children really don’t stand a chance of being able to go out “Trick or Treating” with their friends...Sure we get flack about it from them, but then we sit them down and remind them what we stand for...“If we don’t stand up for Christ, we’ll fall for anything“...We might go to Walmart the day after and buy a bag of candy to share between them, but that’s about it. The neighborhood kids once egged our house because we were the only house that didn’t participate, but it still doesn’t deter us.



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          Bobbi Bacha wrote Oct 17, 2008
        • You know I hear this every year.  

          The truth is that all Christian and non-christian Holidays are based upon some pagan beliefs.  Easter and the Egg, was a pagan symbol used by the church to lure none believers and trees were worshiped by Pagans as and brought into homes in the winter months and churches used them as a lure for to bring pagans to church. (I could go on and on) but bottom line is that Halloween may have been originally a pagan holiday, but since its on our calendar and many Americans celebrate it, I think its a fun time of year for kids and adults to have fun, dress up and exchange and eat candy.  Its all about the candy, RIGHT ?  And its a nice way to start the fall / winter months.   My fondest memories were tricker treating as a child and never once did I ever think I was worshiping the devil by doing so.

          I did make sure my children knew the history of every holiday even to the pagan beginings, but explained to them that we just have fun with the celebration, but in no way do we deny our beliefs.  Its like not believing in Santa Claus at Christmas because he had nothing to do with the actual biblical event.    

          I love giving out candy to my neighborhood kids and seeing all thier little costumes and their eyes wide in wonder as I come to the door in my witch hat and cape with my broom with my cat following me.  Priceless.  Its all in fun.  God knows my heart.  

          Again, everyone has thier own belief, this is just mine.  I respect all others beliefs.



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          Leeann wrote Oct 17, 2008
        • Halloween is what you make it. I love it . We have a great time. I make cookies and my kids have friends over for pizza and my hubby and I take our younger kids out to trick or treat.



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          Joan Cox wrote Oct 17, 2008
        • hrmm.. I do not see it to much as a problem... because truth is.. I am not sure WHAT holiday is out there that IS Christian..

          Most holidays if not all, are taken origionally from Pagan days and the Catholics just nudged Paganism part to the side and altered it a bit with Christian symbols, but to me the foundation is Pagan, ergo.. no matter the house built on the foundation.. its Pagan at heart

          but see, thats ME... I prefer to view the foundation something sits on and go from there.. thats how my heart and mind sees it..

          and I guess thats it.. you have to decide your heart.. your mind.. and go with it.. you see the real foundation beneath the house? Or do you see the house and not the foundation? Neither view is WRONG.. because it is in the eye of the beholder...  

          make your choices.. and stick to em *grins8

          just dont hide facts behind facades.. I guess i am a person who likes to tell it like it is.. my kids know what things began as and how other faiths built on top of other faiths on top of other faiths (you get the idea).. *shrugs*.. they love the facts of it all though and in turn as adults they celebrate all the facts.. pagan and christian.. because in the end.. its all on the same plot of land.

          our family is nuts though winks

          for treats now.. i give books. I work at scholastic book clubs inc, and as such I am able to go to the scholastic book store. There i can get paperback books for 35 cents each.

          SOOOOOOOOOO instead of stocking up on 20 bux worth of candy.. I stock up on 20 bucks worth of books. and on top of that, we have book boxes periodically throughout the year, 10 bux for a box of books.. so I am always filled to the brim with paperback books.. kids love it! I get repeats *grins*.. kids come, pick a book.. then i notice 20 min later.. they are back again .. i dont mind.. its BOOKS!



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          Dana Arcuri wrote Oct 18, 2008
        • Debrajl9, how cool and creative that you thought up a neat idea to give your boys candy, allow them to dress up in costumes at school and then treat them for an evening at Pizza
          Hut!  It sounds like fun to me and a safe alternative to celebrating Halloween!

          Deniseh40, I applaud you for standing firm in your faith!  By chance, do you plan any alternative activities for your children, whether it is attending a church harvest party, taking them out to eat or staying home to enjoy a family movie with popcorn?  On years that I did not permit my kids to trick or treat, I always had an alternative, fun activity for my kids so they did not feel bad about missing out on celebrating Halloween.  This way, my kids were able to have fun with other kids, play games, win prizes and even receive candy, plus it was safe and we did not have to sort through it to make sure that it wasn’t poisoned!  

          Greeneyedlady, yes, I agree with you that holidays all have a pagan root.  That is good that you share the history with your children so they know what each holiday means and you explain to them the importance of their faith.

          Willowdreams, that is so neat that you give out BOOKS, instead of candy!  Very creative and a safe alternative to candy!  Plus, kids need to read more and this is a terrific way to promote reading!  

          Jackie65 and Jesus‘girl,both of you brought up a very good point that we should NOT commercialize holidays that are truly days to celebrate the birth & resurrection of Christ.  Yes, I firmly believe that we need to focus and celebrate the REAL meaning of Christmas and Easter.  My kids and I enjoy bringing out the manger with baby Jesus, the four Kings, the angel and barn animals.  I have even bought my kids a nativity set to play with.  Each year, all our relatives and family get together on Christmas day and we have a birthday cake in which we sing “Happy Birthday” to Jesus!  

          On Thanksgiving, our family takes turns to say one thing that we are most thankful for.  It is fun and it teaches our children that we are so blessed and we have so much to  thank our Heavenly Father for.



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          Denise Alleyne-Hill wrote Oct 19, 2008
        • Now that we are “A happy blended family” we try to start our own traditions...Most times we just fudge along really...The children don’t seem too upset at their lack of participation in what their peers do...Being a large family money is tight and we explain that to them and when we can, we have “Family date night” where one child gets to pick where we go out to eat...They love that...And when it’s their birthday, we take them out, their choices, we just let them know what the budget looks like...Aside from that, my birthday is Christmas Day (lucky me) so we have an extra special celebration because of that, but God is always in our celebrations, as Jackie65 said, we celebrate the reason, not the commercial...No easter bunnies, or santa claus, our children did not grow up with the “tooth fairy“..We keep it real...They know that whatever Christmas gifts they got, they got from their parents, both sets. For Halloween, they get cookies, that they make (they love that) maybe some candy, but most importantly, they have each other.



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          Denise Alleyne-Hill wrote Oct 19, 2008
        • Teeky...Thats priceless what you said about your daughter...And then if you think about it...that’s so ridiculous to set children up like that...What if they believe in the whole Santa Claus thing and their house doesn’t have a chimney? Does that mean that “Santa won’t be coming to their house and dropping off goodies?“...Why set them up like that and traumatize them???..I mean...hey everyone has a right to do as they will in their home, but for me and mine...we‘re keeping it real with them...ALWAYS!!!...There’s enough in this crazy world to traumatize them, I’m not gonna be the one to do it..

          My 8 year old just lost her tooth, of course the teacher told her to take it home and put it under the pillow for the tooth fairy...she simply said to her...you mean my mummy and daddy???...lol...Smart child.



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          Denise Alleyne-Hill wrote Oct 19, 2008
        • Yes my grandmother was in the delivery room when Nadia was born and immediately she said (In that Bajan accent)...“This child is going to be something else, flies won’t settle on her (meaning, you won’t be able to fool her)..lol...Ans she was right...



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