Having returned from a fabulous half term in Sussex, I am trying to put the final touches to our 25th Anniversary service, which is the following day. It is amazing how long it takes to tie up these last few lose ends. I have an anxious moment when I try to remember which version of The Creed we agreed to use, before I remember that we are singing Graham Kendrick's version! Phew! (Though we sing it in a rather rockier, less syrupy style :O ) The doorbell rings. I go to answer.
In the second before I answer the door, I spot some coloured lights and remember that it is Hallowe'en. What is a good Christian supposed to do?
a) Tell them that you disprove of Hallowe'en and that anything glorifying the devil is wrong?
b) Refuse to answer the door
c) Join in.
In the past I have fudged the issue, by saying I don't do Hallowe'en, but still gave sweets as they had gone to the trouble of dressing up. This year things are different. It is the first year in our new house. I open the door, to see two suitably glad figures, nervously holding buckets, with parents hovering close by. I admire the costumes and chat to the parents. They are really pleased that someone has finally answered the door and given a reward to their offspring, as most of the houses nearby appear to be in darkness, even though it is early. During the evening I meet a procession of my new neighbours and have some good conversations. Most of them will regard Hallowe'en as no more than an opportunity to dress up and get some sweets. There is a time for talking about the darker side of Hallowe'en, but I did not feel that this was the occasion. This was an opportunity to meet some neighbours, to see 31st October in a more positive light and reclaim Hallowe'en!