I wonder what my fellow attendees of the Vatican Bloggers' Meeting would say if they knew how much I love Halloween.
Part of it is climate. I have lived all of my life in northern places (I'm counting Virginia as northern. Sorry, CSA.). In the fall everything dies. Sure, the leaves go out with a blaze of glory- I love fall leaves, to a point beyond reason- but face it' it's all going downhill. Those gorgeous reds and golds? They're a death rattle.
So thousands of years ago man looked around and said to himself, "Everything is dying. This can't be good." It stands to reason his thoughts would turn a little gloomy.
Flash forward to the days of Christianity. Christians celebrate the Feast of All Saints on November 1. How long do you figure it was before somebody asked himself, "It's one thing to throw a party for the saints, but mightn't there be, um, gate-crashers? And wouldn't it be a good idea to, you know, ward them off if we can?"
Bingo. All Hallows' Eve, the ultimate velvet-rope=and-bouncers holiday. Carve your scary pumpkin and relax, there's no way wondering spirits are getting past that.
Worried cavemen, nervous Christians, what's not to love? Throw in the Legend of Sleepy Hollow and a couple of tell-tale organs and voila, you've got yourself a gathering around the campfire. Which is a party in my book.
I know many of my fellow Christians have reservations about Halloween. Many of them I think are well founded. I hate slasher movies for the most part. I'm not real keen on the blood and gore that Hollywood thinks is an autumn theme. I object to that stuff, too.
But I don't object to the ghostly stuff. I like graveyards. I like ghost stories. I don't think there's anything unchristian about ghost stories, either. There are ghosts in the Bible. What about Saul summoning up the Witch of Endor? Huh? And if the apostles had never heard anything about ghosts, why did the post-resurrection Jesus have to prove to them He wasn't one, by asking for something to eat? Huh? Huh? What about that, huh?
It's the end of the growing season. Everything is dying. In a few weeks we'll be buried in the dead cold snow.
Let's party while we can. Boo, baby!