From the only reliable source of news on the net, the Onion. My last trick or treating experience as a child was in 1969 and I have reared my children in the McClarey Halloween tradition of ample candy, cheap costumes and Dad falling asleep on the couch after over indulging in candy. May my offspring keep these hallowed traditions alive for the next generation!
In the spirit of the season, Taylor Marshall (Called to Communion) offers “top ten ways to have a Catholic Halloween:
This time of year introduces several debates. Among conservative Protestants it’s “Halloween or no Halloween?” which sometimes becomes “Halloween vs. Reformation Day,” the latter being the celebration of Martin Luther’s posting of the 95 Theses on Oct 31. Even some Catholics are concerned that Halloween has become “evil.” Well, here are ten ways to keep good ol’ Halloween fun and sacred. …
Secondly, a great reflection by John Zmirak (InsideCatholic) on “the brightest, best moment of the whole liturgical year.”
And speaking of our Protestant brethren, John Mark Reynolds (First Things‘ “Evangel”) asks: Is Reformation Day the new Kwanzaa? 😉
Last Friday on October 30 the mainstream media here in America reported inaccurately that the Vatican was warning parents that Halloween is ‘anti-Christian’. Of course no such thing occurred. The Vatican did not say that Halloween is ‘anti-Christian’, in fact they didn’t say anything at all.
On that same day, Jack Smith of The Catholic Key Blog debunked the story with yeoman’s work finding the source of the “alleged” Vatican Halloween Warning to a priest of the Spanish Bishop’s Conference by the name of Fr. Joan Maria Canals, CMF, a liturgy expert. I followed up with a posting on this website early the next day supplementing Jack Smith’s findings with common mistakes made in reporting what is and isn’t official.
I then submitted my article to several news organizations, including the Drudge Report and the USA Today. Additionally I left comments and sent emails explaining why their reporting was inaccurate. To their credit, both the Drudge Report and the USA Today, rectified the situation some extent.
The Drudge Report removed the link to the Daily Mail late Saturday morning. Then early Monday afternoon on November 2, Doug Stanglin, who wrote the piece that inaccurately attributed the Vatican warning parents of the anti-Christian nature of Halloween, followed up with our side of the story.
[Updates at the bottom of this post.]
In what is a common occurrence that happens more than you think, the media again has done a poor job of reporting the news that emanates from the Vatican. If it came from the Vatican at all. The new one today is that the Catholic Church condemns Halloween, or some variation there of.
Various news outlets have reported that the Pope, the Catholic Church, or the Vatican have condemned, blasted, slammed, or as the Times of London said, “reserved their venom for the millions of parents who allowed their children to celebrate this “pagan” festival.”
In recent years Halloween has gone from a primarily child-oriented holiday to an occasion of commercial importance comparable to Christmas or Easter. National retail sales figures indicate that Halloween is the 6th biggest holiday for retailers — behind Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day — and rapidly gaining ground, particularly among young adults.
The trend has now sparked a movement of sorts — led by the Spirit Halloween retail chain — to move Halloween permanently to the last Saturday in October. Their online petition at this link (http://www.spirithalloweekend.com/ ) asks Congress to lend its official endorsement to the change, although that would not be strictly necessary since Halloween is not a federal or national holiday.