Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven… deliver us from evil: For Thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, forever. Amen. Matthew 6:9-13
Halloween has always been my least favorite holiday, until now. It seems there is more to the tradition than you’ll find at the bib box stores. As leaves fall and chill winds and gray skies beckon us to hearth and home, we recognize autumn as a slowing down and moving inward, physically and spiritually. For millennia, Halloween was considered the 1st day of the autumn triduum with All Saints day and All Souls Day, coming between the fall equinox and the winter solstice; a time when the veil between this world and the next is thin. Celebrated to usher us into this quieter, more contemplative space, the autumn triduum honored our ancestors’ lives, contributions, and passings, with a glimpse into the scary, yet compelling mystery of death.
Unfortunately Western culture kept only the traditions rooted in superstition: costumes worn to prevent ghosts from recognizing us, jack o’ lanterns imitating skulls lit with candles to frighten spirits, and begging for wood to light a bonfire to keep away evil entities devolved into begging for candy.
Originally the word halloween meant “to make holy,” een being the shortened form of evening. Viewed from this perspective, Halloween becomes significant to our lives as Christians.
To restore this sacred time, herald its coming with a short meditation. In a prayerful posture, call to mind all the saintly people, past and present, public and private, who have made your life possible. Pray for them. Thank them and God for their presence in your life. Acknowledge those who rise to your awareness, knowing God sends them with love and healing. Then allow Jesus to come, the One who is the Source of our good. Thank Him for your many blessings, including the challenges which help us grow into our best selves. Thank Him for transforming the shadow of death into the light of the resurrection. We have nothing to fear from darkness—we have Jesus. This Hallowed Evening take time to remember the true Spirit of the season.
Deliver us from evil: For Thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.