It is some parent’s dilemmas around this spooky time of year in Fall all around them the stores are putting out candy and haunting costumes Salem Haunted Happening and decorations start appearing with ghosts and pumpkins. But some just aren’t into all that jazz because they simply don’t believe in celebrating the holiday for religious beliefs. In fact many Christians are not really all that comfortable celebrating what they believe is the dark theme that Halloween seems to embrace, and it’s focus on the arcane. In fact some Christian families do not celebrate it at all. But with the large commercialization of the Holiday it is difficult to avoid. And some parents are also concerned about their kids missing out on the fun, especially since most public schools do recognize and celebrate the holiday. There arises the question, “Will my child feel that they are being punished because our family holds different values?” There are a few simple solutions to this dilemma for parents. Celebration can still be had, but the focus of the celebration can be suitably changed.
Many local churches hold lock-in parties, where they arrange an over night party for the children of the congregation. They have music refreshments and movies to entertain the youth and games that are better suited to your beliefs. Such lock-ins are great fun for kids, especially adolescents, and parents are encouraged to chaperone.
If you live in an area where churches do not do this or if you feel your children are too young for this kind of party, it’s easy to hold your own little party. Parents are becoming concerned about the safety of trick or treating, and many that I know of are more comfortable taking their children to parties instead. My suggestion? Don’t hold a Halloween party hold a Prayer Party! An idea for this is to invite your children’s friends over to your house where you hold a costume party but not just any old costume party! Make the party’s theme a Biblical theme. Encourage each child to dress as their favorite Bible character. Encourage them to use materials they have available at home, such as bed sheets, accessories they can make themselves by drawing, or constructing them out of paper. If you’re game for it, ask them to act in character while they’re at the party, and encourage the parents to participate as well.
At the party have refreshments and punch, and decorate using a biblical theme. It is preferable to hold a prayer at the beginning, for the safety of the children out celebrating Halloween, and hopes that they return home safely and soundly. Then let the fun begin! You can plan activities such as Bible Trivia, depending on age coloring contests, Bible Pictionary, etc. and have prizes. Other activities can include usual party activities such as the pin drop, pin the tail on the donkey, and other sorts of party games that you can think of. For refreshments everything from cupcakes, chips, pizza, and as always candy will work. Use your imagination. Half of the fun of an activity like this is to get the entire family working on every aspect of it, and putting a little creativity into it. But the biggest activity of the evening should be to get everyone together and have them introduce themselves as their characters, explain what they did in the Bible, and why it was so important.
After each person has introduced their character you can start jeopardy style cannon of trivia about the characters present. At the end of the round hand out prizes and ask each party go-er, which character was their favorite, and why. Also you can hold a best costume contest, for prizes as well. There is no limit to the sorts of activities you can plan. Before the party breaks up, you can hold another prayer for the safety of the trick or treaters out celebrating Halloween, and then a prayer for the safety of your party goers in reaching their home.
Your children can still have fun and not feel as if they are missing out on anything, while you can maintain your values. You may even take the opportunity to explain the premise of Halloween to your children, and why you don’t celebrate it, and place emphasis on celebrating what you DO believe.