The Open Door Christian Fellowship
Seventy Digital, September 21 2018

WHY LIGHT PARTIES?

Why we recommend “Light Parties” to our families instead of celebrating Halloween

Love it or loathe it, you can’t escape it. Halloween is firmly established in our calendar with shops and media referring to “halloweekend” and even “halloweek”.

As a Church, we try to discourage families from celebrating halloween and from “trick-or-treating” in the community. But why - are we just being the kill-joys that the Church is often portrayed as?

Origins: The exact origins of halloween celebrations are uncertain, but the consensus is that they are connected to pagan rights and superstition. Many activities associated with halloween originate in practices designed to ward off or appease evil spirits; games such as apple-bobbing were possibly forms of divination. Without a doubt, halloween was a night in which there was a strong focus on death, spirits and dark forces in the world.

Recent Trends: In recent years popular culture has helped focus young people’s attention on occultist practices and imagery. Harry Potter, Twilight, Buffy and other franchises have increased young people’s interests in magic and other-worldly topics. Of course, witches have appeared in children’s literature for centuries, but recent trends have shown a more positive, seductive and exciting view of witches and wizardry. The result is that young people are far more interested in occult and dark practices than ever before.

At the same time rates of depression and suicide amongst our young people have increased alarmingly. It is hard (impossible?) to draw direct links between occult interest and the mental health of our young people, but the parallel increase in both appears more than coincidence.

Biblical Principles: Throughout the Bible, witchcraft, divination and mediumship are strongly condemned. The Bible also encourages us to reflect on the positive and good things in life;

 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things.                                                                            [Philippians 4:8, NIV]

With this in mind, it seems wrong for Christian families to allow their children to act out pagan practices and focus on death and the occult, even in the name of fun.

Light Party? But why “Light Parties”, do they not celebrate halloween in a different way? Every Christmas and Easter we are reminded that these were once pagan festivals that have been hijacked by the Christian Church. The early Church realised that it is very difficult to stop people enjoying a good celebration that has been assumed into culture. So they chose to change the focus of those celebrations for those who identified themselves with the Church. In the case of halloween, it is difficult to tell our children that they cannot enjoy the same parties and celebrations they see the rest of the community participating in, hence we seek to give families and young people in the Church a different focus to their celebrations.

We aim to have parties that celebrate goodness and light, in particular Jesus Christ who is the Light of the World.

In conclusion we really encourage parents (particularly parents who identify themselves as Christian believers) to seek alternative entertainment for their children this halloween and to seek out a local church running a good light party.

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Seventy Digital

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