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A Christian debate over Halloween: Counter, co-opt, or embrace it?
October 28th, 2011
02:30 PM ET

A Christian debate over Halloween: Counter, co-opt, or embrace it?

Editor's note: Listen to the CNN Radio broadcast about the debate: By Jim Roope, CNN

Los Angeles (CNN) - For many American Christians, Halloween is innocent, harmless and fun, and they trick-or-treat, carve pumpkins and don costumes with gusto.

For others, though – especially for some conservative and fundamentalist Christians - Halloween is a celebration of evil and has no place in the life of a believer.

Halloween fun facts: Spending, eating and carving

“We don’t endorse that or we don’t celebrate that,” said Joe Hernandez, pastor of Worshipwalk Church in Los Angeles, which belongs to the conservative Pentecostal tradition. “People are celebrating the devil’s holiday.”

Halloween’s roots are believed to date back 1,400 years, to the Irish-pagan New Year’s celebration. The Celtic New Year began on November 1. People would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off roaming ghosts and evil spirits.

Movies that scare the people who scare us

Some Christians, like Hernandez, believe Halloween’s pagan roots can open the door to evil. That’s why Worshipwalk is hosting a harvest festival in its church parking lot on Monday, with kids’ games and face painting.

Hernandez calls it harvesting hearts for God.

Some conservative churches go a step further, attempting to co-opt the holiday with haunted houses - called “hell houses” - that are designed to give a glimpse of eternal damnation in hopes of strengthening faith.

“There’s Satan’s lies and there’s Jesus’ redemption and there’s a message that will change your life,” said Keenan Roberts, who says he is the inventor of the hell house, which people walk or call through, just as they would a haunted house.

I was a zombie movie extra

“It’s designed to reach the ‘sight and sound’ age,” said Roberts. “The message is sacred but the method is not.”

Hell houses can be graphic. In Roberts’ hell house – which he markets through his Hell House Ministries – live actors depict scenes of abortion, rape, suicide and murder, though the journey through the house culminates in scenes of redemption through Jesus.

Pastor of the fundamentalist New Destiny church near Denver, Colorado, Roberts said that his ministry has received a lot of criticism for what critics say is “going too far.”

But he said today’s kids are so desensitized that he will do whatever it takes to get the message of salvation to take root.

Avoiding sexy costumes for kids

Mainline Protestants tend to take a much softer line on Halloween, with some mainline churches embracing it.

“Halloween for me is a time to have fun,” said Wayne Walters, pastor at the First United Methodist Church in Burbank, California. “I remember growing up - on Halloween I went trick-or-treating. I was in it for the candy.”

“And at Christmas I put out cookies and milk for Santa Claus, who always took time to sit down and enjoy them,” he continued. “None of those I think had a negative influence, destroyed or diminished my faith, he said.”

Walters says that many non-religious traditions associated with Christian holidays, including Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, hardly mean those holidays are non-Christian.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Halloween

soundoff (3,144 Responses)
  1. pastmorm

    Christians that are against Halloween are just silly. If they are so afraid of evil, they need to look in the mirror...nothing more frightening than a mean, angry, hateful, judgemental christain. I think I'll dress up as one this Halloween!

    October 28, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • Greg s

      A muslim with a steak knife fille me with more fear then any Christian. At least they wont cut your head off.!!!

      October 28, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
  2. Jon

    What's more horrifying than..
    'Do what I say or I'll send you to suffer and burn for ALL ETERNITY'
    I think Jesus should be the new spokesman for Halloween personally. It's the scariest costume I can think of.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • Learnfromlife

      So Jon,
      Jesus wore a costume? Sad.

      October 28, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
    • Michael

      Find one place where Jesus made said that.... the fact is when Jesus was asked what is the greatest commandment, it was to love God with all your heart soul and mind and to love thy neighbor as thyself...

      October 28, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • EatYouAlive

      Right, love a god that, if you do not accept him, but do no wrong in the world, you will suffer eternal torment.

      Nice guy, this god. lol

      October 28, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
    • Beast

      Awesome! Adults believing in magic....almost child like in a way.

      October 28, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • meemee

      Michael

      "Find one place where Jesus made said that.... Here's one; Matt; 5 ; 29 .... "If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to throw away one part of your body than for your whole body to thrown into Hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into Hell."

      And then of course we have; Luke 12:49 "I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! But I have a baptism to undergo, and how distressed I am until it is completed! Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell y ou, but division. From now on, there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, fratgher against son and son against father, mother against against daughter and daughter against mother, mother in law against daughter in law, and daughter in law against mother in law."

      And of course there is more condemnation and hellfire preaching in the Acts and Epistles by Paul and others. And these Gospel passages ALONE are the words that have have come to pass with great force in the past two thousand years. The first few hundred years are filled with fighting between one sect and another. Then this spread to Europe and went after individuals and nations fought over it, killing millions and causing unimaginable extremes of suffering and agony.

      October 28, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
    • JonSnow

      @michael

      How do you feel that you were such a terrible person you made god kill himself? I really do feel sorry for you christians. What a horrible thing the concept of hell is. To think so many billions of people, woman children included, because of their misfortunes of being born where they were are going to suffer for ALL ETERNITY. What a sad, pathetic religion.

      October 29, 2011 at 11:49 am |
  3. Witchay Woman

    I'm Christian and I don't go to church. But as for Halloween, hell yeah! It's a good time for all and is meant to be fun. In fact, I am going to be dressing up and going to Chipotle to get my cool dealio of a $2 meal. But yeah...some of the biggest (not all) hippocrites I have ever met were in church. One year, when my kids attended a church Halloween party, this one woman saw my son dressed as a Ninja (practical, for me since he used the costume as pajamas later, AND it kept him warm outside) and he held a pair of numchucks (sic?) from the dollar store. That idiot looked at me and said, "Are those real?" And she was dead serious. I wanted to say, "Are YOU real?" But no...I answered with, "Oh, yes. They're real because I like my kids to carry around lethal weapons." What a tool...

    But I say YES to Halloween!!!!!! HAPPY HALLOWEEN EVERYBODY!

    October 28, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • lilly

      LOLOLOLOL!!!! I would have loved to see her face.

      October 28, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
    • JDillon

      You're a Christian and you don't go to church. Hmmm, if you're a Christian, don't you want to worship God on Sunday?

      October 28, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    • Ravensun

      What does the inside of a building have to do with someone's personal relationship with their chosen deity? Church-schmirch.

      Tell me where it says "thou shalt attend church each and every Sunday without fail, or thou can'st be in the club" in the Bible.

      Sheesh!

      October 29, 2011 at 8:53 am |
    • Kyser

      the correct term is Deist, Someone who believe's in God, yet does not go to church or believes in organized religion. Which I am myself. Most people fail to realize that the majority of our founding Fathers were most likely infact Deist, or believe in Deism in some way. This includes Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Cornelius Harnett, Gouverneur Morris, and Hugh Williamson. Though the real moral of the story here is, your a awesome Mom for letting your son be a Ninja for Holloween! though Nunchaku in the hand's of a child is hardly a deadly weapon, their more of a defensive weapon actually.

      November 1, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
  4. nwi

    "harvesting hearts"? sounds pretty sketchy to me.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • Skeletonkeys

      Totally! Perhaps it's a Day of the Dead Mesoamerican hold over?

      October 28, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
    • ac

      Zombies harvesting hearts instead of brains. Lol.

      October 28, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
    • meemee

      Skeletonkeys

      "Totally! Perhaps it's a Day of the Dead Mesoamerican hold over?"

      This is a popular misconception. The natives in Mexico learned Catholic "All Hallows" holiday and then added it to their own "pagan" practices.

      October 28, 2011 at 5:56 pm |
  5. yark

    So... everyone knows that decorating the Christmas tree for Christmas and decorating eggs for Easter Sunday are both pagan traditions right? The church allowed these things because they wanted more viewers in their churches and it was an easier sell to let the pagans continue with their traditions than to deny them. More money in the collection pot meant it was easier for the god-fearing folk to bend their views a bit. Who needs faith when the collection pot is getting fat?

    October 28, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • Melissa

      You know the scared-to-salvation variant of Christians will deny this outright (even if it's true).

      I think the funniest thing I saw was attending one of these churches with a friend one year, hearing all of the anti-Pagan ranting, and then they start singing the Holly and the Ivy. The mental disconnect is amazing.

      October 28, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
    • meemee

      Look at the days of the week; Sun Day (Sol Invictis), Saturn Day (Sol Invictis), Moon Day (Sol Invictis) Teus Day (Old Germanic for Mars), Wodens Day, "Wotan, Odin, "Germanic and Norse Gods), Thors Day (Thor, Nordic God), Freyas Day, (Nordic Goddess).

      I'm glad that the Christians weren't able to destroy this as well as everything else.

      October 28, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
    • Ravensun

      That is hilarious. "The Holly and the Ivy" is about as pagan a song as you can get, yet there it is, in the majority of hymnals I've ever seen. *snort*

      October 29, 2011 at 8:54 am |
  6. Tammy

    I don't do Halloween for 2 reasons.... it celebrates the evil and dead AND there's enough perverts and sicko's out there running around without a mask and make up on all through the year, Halloween just makes it easier for them to hide behind the masks and make up so they can do evil without anyone being able to identify them.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • William Demuth

      So you don't take your kids to church do you?

      The REAL monsters wear robes and bugger little kids.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • J. Las Cruces

      "Halloween’s roots are believed to date back 1,400 years, to the Irish-pagan New Year’s celebration. The Celtic New Year began on November 1. People would light bonfires and wearing costumes to ward off roaming ghosts and evil spirits."

      October 28, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • Fookin' Prawn

      And that's fine, don't celebrate it. But if your main reasons are because you have massive misconceptions about it, and you're paranoid, that's just...well, let's say I'm glad you don't celebrate, since it saves sane people from coming to your door.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • Zammin

      Christians celebrate the dead. It's called 'a funeral'. Whatever you may argue, it's a ceremony about letting go of a dead person and honoring their life. So that's one part of your argument gone.

      Two: It does not 'celebrate evil'. Not really. The tradition of dressing up originally began as a pagan tradition to hide from evil, to ward it off. Not to celebrate it.

      If a pervert is going to run around groping people, they ain't gonna bother waiting till Halloween. EVERYONE is in masks, and the same advice always applies: Don't let 'em touch you in weird places, and hang by people you know. The people you know and like are even easier to find because they wear distinctive costumes, as opposed to everyone wearing clothing that is actually fairly indistinguishable (a line-up of a lion, a superhero, and a zombie is a lot easier to pick out of than three people wearing t-shirts and jeans).

      October 28, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • Jen

      I like halloween. Doesn't make me any less than of a Catholic. It's plain fun to go around as a zoombie Bono! (Bono is my hero, but like to get a little creative). I like Halloween I find the folk lore interesting. How is learning about the roots of a pagan holiday really going to lead to my external damnation. (Even the pagans were seeking protection on that day, by praying, ok so we have something in common with them!)

      It is one day to have a little fun! I wouldn't go play with a oji board! But I also like celebrating the Mexican Holiday from time to time -Dia de Los Muertos (The Day of the Dead). You honor the dead on that day. I am part mexican.

      Go live a little. You only get one life to live. A costume is not hurting anyone! Buy some candy and have fun! 🙂

      October 28, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • Jimmy Ou

      If you think there is perverts around all the time then you must rethink about this God who created the world.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
    • Messenger

      By perverts do you mean the Chicago and Boston Archdioceses?

      October 28, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
    • meemee

      You know, it was the image of the Christian Day of Judgment with all those graves opening up, that led to the horror stories. The festival in the Old Religion only taught that the venerated ancestors spirits were closer to them on or near what became Oct 31 during the season of Samhaine, which was the end of the year for them. The idea that some Christians were only party pardoned, hanging out in places like Purgatory, would give some risen corpses an "evil" and partly possessed appearance. This Christian stuff is really perverse.

      October 28, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
    • Jonboy

      Once your kids grow up and realize the fun they missed out on because their mother was naive, weird and paranoid, they are going to resent you for it. Coming from someone who has experience in this.

      October 29, 2011 at 11:09 am |
    • LPC

      So take your kids trick-or-treating yourself...as any intelligent parent would do. Who would send little kids out by themselves any day of the year. Surely you can protect them from perverts in masks for one night?

      October 29, 2011 at 11:45 am |
    • JonSnow

      Those are the same reasons I dont go to church! Verbatim! "It celebrates the evil and dead AND there's enough perverts and sicko's out there running around without a mask and make up on all through the year,"

      October 29, 2011 at 11:53 am |
    • bbmcrae

      Tammy, what a sad, tiny, crazy, paranoid little world you have created for yourself. You have my pity.

      October 29, 2011 at 3:56 pm |
    • ThatSatanGuy

      I celebrate evil every day of my life! Halloween is my favorite holiday because the kids get into it too. ALL HAIL THE DARK ONE!!!!

      October 29, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  7. Jeff Williams

    You believe in spirits, but not ghosts.
    You believe that Jesus rose from the dead but zombies are evil.
    You believe that you can symbolically drink the blood of Jesus but also that eating Halloween candy is celebrating the devil.

    What an interesting religion.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • pastmorm

      Jeff, you rule man!!!!! Way to sock it to the christians!

      October 28, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
    • Matt

      Very well done.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • Dood

      LOL! Your analogy is horrible, my friend! I seriously hope you're joking. Happy Halloween!

      October 28, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • kwirk

      Jeff, some christian groups such as Catholics do not symbolically drink his blood. They believe it IS his blood and his body. So Jesus rose from the dead and we eat HIM. Sort of a reverse zombie situation. People need to lighten up. Most kids are not "celebrating evil" they want free candy and a chance to dress up. To all the Halloween haters out there....tell me how a 4 year old dressed as a a ballerina looking for a Milkyway is celebrating evil. Celebrating tooth decay maybe but evil...not so much.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • Zammin

      Eeyup. Also, you must always obey every part of this one holy book, but you're allowed to eat pork, you don't have to avoid eating mixed fibers, and you are NOT allowed to dance wildly and accidentally lewdly for the Lord (because God is apparently down with that). Even though all those examples go against something said in the Bible.

      It makes so much sense sometimes. Mind you, most other religions make just as much sense, and several atheistic theories about the universe can be kinda stupid as well. So just do what you think is best. And step back to objectively understand a holiday before you denounce it, please. Not you specifically. You're fine.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
    • Jimmy Ou

      Well said Jeff

      October 28, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
    • Jeff Williams

      """some christian groups such as Catholics do not symbolically drink his blood. They believe it IS his blood and his body"""

      Hey I know that. I can't cover ALL the crazy. Thanks for the addition...

      October 28, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • FUNNY

      GOOD ONE JEFF. i WANT TO BUY YOU LUNCH MAN. YOU HIT THE NAIL ON THE HEAD

      October 28, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
    • CW

      Right on the money, Jeff. I'm amused when I see religious people ridicule one tradition based on myth simply because it conflicts with the myth in which they choose to believe. It's all so hypocritical. And it's all make-believe.

      October 28, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
    • Light In The Black

      ******* BEST POST OF THE DAY *****

      Jeff Williams

      You believe in spirits, but not ghosts.
      You believe that Jesus rose from the dead but zombies are evil.
      You believe that you can symbolically drink the blood of Jesus but also that eating Halloween candy is celebrating the devil.

      What an interesting religion.

      October 29, 2011 at 8:47 am |
    • bilal

      wow.. interesting

      October 29, 2011 at 10:06 am |
    • Paratrooper

      Jeff...You nailed it! LMAO

      October 29, 2011 at 8:51 pm |
    • Kimberly

      Watch any religious service, especially Catholic, and you will catch MANY throw backs to the pagan rituals and beliefs mixed in. And they don't even realize it. It is so sad. As mentioned earlier, if anyone took the time to step away from blind faith and actually educate themselves on the history of the religions, the holidays, the location of worship sites, the days of the week, the hymns, and so much more about "Christianity" they would really be amazed. But ignorance is bliss.

      October 30, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
  8. Magic Rat

    Pagan roots? Ummm, what do they think the Christmas tree and yule log are? Not to mention celebrating Jesus's birth around the winter solstice? And what's up with rabbits carrying eggs to commemorate the Resurrection?

    October 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • Aaron

      You are very knowlegable about this. Good for you . The fact is that Easter bunnies, eggs, christmas tree, halloween are all from pagan routs ... the sad part is that the Church, in all its holiness, condoned and even embraces these things... Christ did not give permission for any of this stuff; yet the church embraces it. And, they call themselves holy and representative of Christ.

      Very sad indeed.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
    • Jen

      I know we have a lot of customs from the pagans we forgot about. I love history. Our depection of the devil is drawn on paganism. Pan-mainly. Other traditions the Christmas wreath. Lots of things. I am Catholic, I love Halloween! 🙂

      October 28, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • kwirk

      Aaron, I have news for you. Lots of things you may think are purely Christian come from traditions far older than Christianity including things like the virgin birth. All religions pick and chose what they want to declare as true faith to suit their needs. Why else would the bible have changed so many times over the past two thousand years.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
    • meemee

      In the Church in Nazareth, there is an old painting of Mary holding an egg. This is a fraud story about how she witnessed for the resurrection this way. But any who look very far can easily learn that she was depicting the Goddess Oestre who brought the Spring and the egg represented all the new birth (chickens start laying more eggs). Mary with the "Christ Child" is nothing more than the "Triple Goddess with her offspring, the son of god, meaning, the birth following the death of the Sun at the Winter Solstice. His warmth is first shown in nature in Spring with the new growth.

      October 28, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
    • Kimberly

      Lets not forget May Day baskets that all of us made in elementary school and gave to our friends! (Beltane)

      October 30, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
  9. buddhabreadboy

    The Church engineered Christianity, not a Savior.

    And secondly the origination of Halloween is the Commemoration of the day before the Destruction of Atlantis. Period.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • Brian

      Lol, that is as good of reason as any....

      October 28, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • meemee

      Better adjust that tin foil hat!

      October 28, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
  10. thierryjtaule

    Christmas = Saturnalia. (look it up)

    October 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      Psst...you might wnat to look it up first. They don't even coincide with each other.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • Eric

      actually they do coincide....but not day for day...that was intended

      fesival of Saturnalia was reduced to increase productivity and reduce court closure time

      day was lined up with the Solstice, and since recognized as a long tradition holy day, was adopted as the Christian equivilant during the time of Constantine. The holy day became the celebration of Christ's Birth, and later incorrectly recognized as his actual birth day.

      Research can be fun.

      October 28, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      Ah..so you agree then Eric that Christmas does not equal Saturnalia..which was the point of the comment. Thanks

      October 28, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  11. keith

    who cares what the churches think. Its a holiday eveyrone has fun with.....they just need to yank their head out of their butts. Priests are already scary to kids anyway

    October 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
  12. Chase

    They do realize that Christmas on December 25 is based on a pagan holiday or are they just that ignorant?

    October 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • J.W

      That does not mean the holiday itself is pagan. If we moved it to november 12th would you still say it was pagan?

      October 28, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • Brian

      It in fact not on Nov 12 for a reason.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • J.W

      Like Uncouth explained below it is not on that day because it has pagan roots, but rather to compete with pagan holidays.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  13. Hugo

    My kids go to a Catholic school and they have a Halloween event every year. Get real people. The Christmas tree is pagan itself, yet the Church made it Holy because they couldn't suppress it.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
  14. Unknown

    Let's see them protesting Easter and Christmas also, those holidays have pagan roots also.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      Not really..or not in the way most think. They are Christian holidays that were put near pagan holidays to compete. Most would say that Jesus should have been born in the spring but Christmas is near the winter solstice which had pagan holidays near it. It's not that Christian holidays bagan as pagan and then became Christian...they were Christian and were arranged in some cases to compete with pagan holidays.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
  15. J.W

    Halloween is definitely evil. That candy makes the kids fat.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • Answer

      @J.W

      Being stupid as usual .. blaming any kind of food for causing fat? What about not exercising? I guess selective blaming is an innate response of the religious.

      October 28, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
  16. coder

    drinking the blood of and eating the body of – isnt creepy enough – with a pedophile priest drooling over its next victim

    christians have no room to talk about evil – considering the evil the christian faith has caused

    October 28, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      Cute how ppl take va_gue generalities and apply them to the whole. And by cute I mean very silly and ignorant.

      October 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
  17. deano

    Here they go imposing their religion on me, all the while screaming that they are under attack because of their religion. Silly christians.

    October 28, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      How are they imposing anything on you?

      October 28, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • Answer

      How are they not?

      October 28, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
    • Entil'za

      Last I saw..most of us on here are in the US...we have a little something about separation of state and church. No religion pushes itself onto the citizens.

      October 28, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
    • meemee

      Entil'za

      "Last I saw..most of us on here are in the US...we have a little something about separation of state and church. No religion pushes itself onto the citizens."

      Are what? Christianity has always attempted to cause a theocratic democracy. Why does Congress Pray when going into session? Why do the military forces have such an overwhelming Christian operation within it? Just today, I had two Jehova Witnesses come to my door. How would they like it if two Muslims came to their door? I don't want any of these people on my property, but they come.

      October 28, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
    • Entil'za

      @meemee- "Christianity has always attempted to cause a theocratic democracy."

      That's a bold face lie. I also have to question your terminology.. a democracy ran by any religion, creed or belief systeem or lack thereof seems like an oxymoron.

      "Why does Congress Pray when going into session? Why do the military forces have such an overwhelming Christian operation within it? Just today, I had two Jehova Witnesses come to my door. How would they like it if two Muslims came to their door? I don't want any of these people on my property, but they come."

      You mixing things a bit here. Congress..not all pray and it's also part of tradition. Also with the military..and their are chaplins of many faiths in the military.
      The JWs have the right to go to your door. You have the right to refuse to answer. If it bugs you...put up a sign or fence.

      October 28, 2011 at 7:32 pm |
  18. ItSOnLyME

    If "Christians" oppose halloween because it has pagan roots, then they need to oppose Christmas as well...

    October 28, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  19. flashtrum

    Wow some of these people really, really need a high colonic or at least a hobby where they can enjoy themselves every now and again. I don't think my 5 year old understands paganism or eternal damnation, nor should he. I prefer he enjoys being a kid and having fun like other kids his age. He has plenty of time to be "indoctrinated".

    October 28, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
    • meemee

      Are you sure he is not being indoctrinated at school via the PC curriculum or the TV? People even children need some deeper guidance. I would simply argue that it shouldn't be something as manipulative or nasty as Christianity, or any of those other Middle Eastern systems of fear and anger. "Paganism" fits best as it is honest and is the Easter Bunny, the Maypole, the harvest festival, and the summer fest, and yule. All seasonal events related to agriculture, animals, and if anything else must be added, the remembrance and veneration of ancestors.

      October 28, 2011 at 6:36 pm |
  20. bp

    Some conservative churches go a step further, attempting to co-opt the holiday with haunted houses – called “hell houses” – that are designed to give a glimpse of eternal damnation in hopes of strengthening faith.

    Proof the religous nuts use fear to keep people ignorant

    October 28, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
    • ali

      Exactly!

      October 28, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
    • Eric

      If you look back through history, fear has ALWAYS been a tool of large organized religion to maintain control of a populace. When faith wanes, fear of repercussion is sometimes all that is left.

      October 28, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
    • meemee

      The entire structure of Christianity relies upon fear, fear of death, fear of the end of the world, fear of punishment, on earth or in hell. On that alone, this religion deserves to be rejected. What sort of supreme being would love or care via threats? The psychology involved is highly manipulative and preys upon the suffering, the ignorant, and the fearful.

      October 28, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.