As a child growing up, I recall getting dressed up in costumes and going trick or treating with my siblings in our neighborhood. After I got married, we kept the tradition of celebrating Halloween with my ex-husband, taking our two young children trick or treating around our neighborhood, while I stayed home and answered our front door bell and passed out wonderful goodies all packaged in special Halloween bags. We did this for many years. But when I became a “born-again” Christian, the Pentecostal church that I belonged to always told us that we do not celebrate Halloween day because it is the devil’s day. So our church would always have a well-organized children’s carnival in the church’s huge parking lot. There were game booths with lots of toys to win, great activities each child could participate in and win wonderful prizes, and lots of candies were given out to each child. We celebrated Halloween this way every single year.
As the years went by, and my children got older and became adults, my daughter always celebrated Halloween with all of her friends wearing extravagant costumes and partying all night in Waikiki. This was her yearly ritual. I always stayed at home on Halloween and became like the rest of my Pentecostal Christian friends. I never celebrated Halloween any more. Instead, I left my front door porch light off so no neighborhood children would ring my doorbell and say trick or treat and I thus stopped buying special Halloween bags and candies. For me, it was the devil’s day and therefore, I had no desire to celebrate it nor give any attention to that day at all.
As I did my research on Halloween, I was somewhat surprised and rather shocked to discover that Halloween has a connection to Christianity. While doing my research, I stumbled upon these very interesting facts and the history of this day, and would like to share them with all of you.
History of Halloween:
According to Google.com:
“The tradition originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, when peoples would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts, in the eighth century. Pope Gregory III designated November 1 as a time to honor all saints. Soon, all Saints Day incorporated some of the traditions of Samhain. “
Why do we say trick or treat?
I found this to be very interesting since I never ever gave it a second thought until I discovered the reason behind the words: trick or treat. The phrase means that if a treat (like candy) is given, then the child will not perform a “trick” (mischief) on the owner of the house. “This popular Halloween custom has its origins in the ancient practices of “souling” and “guising”….The term “trick or treat” first appeared in print in 1927 in Canada.”
Why do people dress up for Halloween?
“The wearing of costumes at Halloween may come from the belief that supernatural beings, or the souls of the dead, roamed the earth at this time. The practices may have originated in a Celtic festival, held on 31 October – 1 November, to mark the beginning of winter. The festival is believed to have pre-Christian roots.”
What is the real meaning of Halloween? “Hallow” : or holy person refers to the saints celebrated on All Saints Day, which is November 1. The “een” part of the word is a contraction of “eve” or evening before. So, basically, Halloween is just an old-fashioned way of saying “the night before All Saints’ Day”----also called Hallomas or All Hallows’ Eve”.
Is Halloween religious? Halloween is a religious holiday belonging to the Roman Catholic Church…..the holiday is: All Hallows’ Eve (or all Saints Day) and falls on November 1.
The history of Halloween and Christianity goes all the way back to the Middle Ages. The roots of trick-or-treating can be traced back to a medieval Christian tradition, in which the poor would go to wealthy homes on Hallowtide ----the eve of All Saints; Day ---- and offer prayers in exchange for food and beer. I found this fact to be very interesting and very surprising to me.
Although it’s derived from ancient festivals and religious rituals, Halloween is still widely celebrated today in many countries around the world. In Ireland, Canada and the United States, traditions include: costume parties, trick-or-treating, pranks and games. I always thought trick-or-treating, wearing costumes and ringing doorbells to demand treats ---- which has been a tradition in the United States and other countries for more than a century. However, this practice can be traced to the ancient Celts, early Roman Catholics and 17th century British politics.
According to: adayinourshoes.com:
Halloween is really old. It is believed that Halloween and traditions began in the year 4,000 BC, which means that humans have been celebrating Halloween for over 6,000 years. Wow, another surprising fact I discovered while doing my research.
Jack-O-Lanterns got their name from an old Irish story of a man named Jack who liked to trick the devil who, because of his tricky ways, was barred from entering Heaven and Hell. Jack was sent off into the night with only a burning coal to light his path. He placed the coal inside a carved – out turnip and has been roaming the earth ever since. People in Ireland and Scotland began creating their own creations of Jack’s lanterns out or turnips, beets and potatoes. The immigrants from Ireland brought this tradition to the United States and people began to use pumpkins for the lanterns instead. Thus, you have Jack-O-Lanterns today. Today, in some USA cities, families would take all of their young children to pumpkin farms to pick out the best, nicest, or largest pumpkin they can find, to take home with them and to carve them. Many would enter contests and win great prizes, which is another popular tradition today.
To my surprise, I discovered while doing my research, that Halloween is more popular than Valentine’s Day or New Years' Day. This is probably based upon the HUGE amounts of monies spent on Halloween by the American consumers. For example: Did you know that Americans spend almost 10 billion dollars per year on candy and costumes for celebrating Halloween? Shocking but true and personally I think it is ridiculous: 10 billion dollars? Imagine what can be done in our country of America with 10 billion dollars. I, personally, can think of tons of things to help humanity: such as our growing or rather exploding homeless situation and for the currently millions of unemployed due to the Covid 19 pandemic.
According to records, Boston, Massachusetts, USA, holds the unique record of having the most Jack-O-Lanterns lit at once (over 30,000).
According to Insider.com: Much of Halloween’s most iconic traditions are deeply rooted in history, dating back to ancient Ireland.
As I continued to do my research on Halloween, I discovered many more interesting and fun facts, which I never knew. Hope some of the ones I described above helped you all to learn a little more about this famous and well-celebrated annual Halloween.
So until the next time that we meet again, keep on smiling, dancing, and meeting new people at our many daily events on Smeet. Click on the calendar icon on the bottom of your computer screen where you will find many daily events hosted by our Smeet EN/INT DJs that everyone can participate in to have fun and meet new people from all over the world. If you are one of the shy ones, look for a Smeet matchmaker, who has two red hearts above their avatar’s head.—ask them to assist you in finding a friend or a significant other. This is one of the FREE services provided by Smeet---- unlike other chat communities online.
If you see me around on Smeet, please say, "Hi" and if you have a question or would like to read articles on certain topics that I have never written articles on the Smeet blog, please message me in private. Always remember: to love one another because love conquers everything.
Happy Smeeting and GOD bless. <3
SAYURI, EN Journalist