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Should Christians celebrate Halloween?

todayNovember 15, 2022 3

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Perhaps you were brought up to see Halloween as a celebration that your friends took part in but you were never allowed to enjoy because your parents felt it wasn’t compatible with their Christian faith. Or maybe you were a seasoned trick or treater but have since changed your mind and want to do something different with your own kids. Here are some of the pros and cons of celebrating Halloween, and a few alternative ideas if you decide not to join in.


For many, Halloween is seen as a way of bringing communities together. If you have young children, it’s likely that their friends will be out trick or treating on 31 October. Making them stay home and miss out on all the fun may cause resentment for them and awkwardness for you as you tell other parents you don’t want any part in it.

Some Christians have decided to ‘redeem’ Halloween by adopting some of the traditions and using it as an evangelistic opportunity. After all, we don’t actually have to become witches, vampires, zombies or ghosts to have a bit of fun, do we? We could use the occasion to talk about subjects that are often taboo, such as death and the afterlife, from a Christian perspective.

We could even turn trick or treating on its head and offer others treats instead of asking for them. It might really turn heads if a family of pumpkins turned up and offered to sweep the leaves off a neighbour’s driveway or a couple of fairies went round collecting supplies for the local food bank rather than knocking for sweets. Imagine the conversations that might be opened up…


On the other hand, many Christians feel that opening the door to anything associated with Halloween is a dangerous prospect. After all, what have we, as salt and light, to do with the darkness? Aren’t we called to be in the world but not of it? Some feel it is their Christian duty to take a stand and turn their backs on this secular, pagan festival. Isn’t there as much of an opportunity to share the gospel by refusing to take part as there is in going along with it?

And then there’s the trick or treating side of things. Should we really be encouraging our children to knock on strangers’ doors, ask strangers for sweets and threaten to do something unpleasant if the strangers refuse? What does that teach our kids? And what impact might it have on sick, disabled, elderly or vulnerable people who may not want children dressed in frightening costumes knocking on their doors?

If you have decided not to celebrate Halloween, talk about it openly so your kids understand why they’re not out trick or treating with their friends, and give them a fun alternative to talk about at school the next day. Be open with friends and neighbours, and they will most likely respect you for it.


Given that there are arguments on either side, it really comes down to your conscience. If you’ve prayed about it and feel the Holy Spirit is leading you one way or the other, follow that leading. And if you don’t feel comfortable celebrating Halloween, there are plenty of activities you can take part in so the kids don’t feel left out.

You could have a treasure hunt with plenty of sweets to find. Decorate your rooms as a family, then hide your clues around the house for them to seek out and puzzle over. Throw in a few tricks as well as treats if you dare! Alternatively, you could have a light party at home or at church and invite other families to celebrate all things bright and beautiful. Get dressed up, get the music pumping and have a ball! If partying isn’t your thing, why not go pumpkin picking, then have a pumpkin-carving evening with the kids? Or arrange a harvest festival and enjoy gathering together different types of seasonal food. You could make gift hampers for those in need or get baking and invite your neighbours over for a big harvest feast. The options are endless!

Written by: Steven Grimmer

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