We've run light parties at All Saints' for a few years now – and we have always had a great time. We have it on “All Hallows’ Eve” - the day before “All Hallows’ Day” – also known as “All Saints’ Day”.
“All Hallows' Eve” is more commonly know these days as “Halloween”.
This time of year is when the Church traditionally remembers Saints' who have died (on All Saints' day), and on the following day (All Souls’ day) remember all people who have died – so All Hallows Eve was the day of preparation beforehand.
For hundreds of years, people have felt the darkness drawing in at this time of year – the days are getting shorter, and winter is coming! It can be a time when we remember our own mortality, as we also remember those who have gone before us – but alongside this we can also remember the promise and hope that Jesus brings – he has overcome death and given us the promise of life after our earthly death.
As a Christian community at All Saints', we feel that some of the traditions associated with Halloween have lost their roots – and become something which remembers death and darkness, but with none of the hope, promise and light. At this time of year many shops are filled with decapitated heads and gory costumes depicting violence – each year worse in an attempt to shock and frighten.
While escorted children trick or treating among homes that expect to join in and who enjoy sharing out sweets can be fun, many householders feel threatened by groups of older teenagers who come prepared with ‘tricks’ such as raw eggs. At no other time of year would it be acceptable to knock on stranger’s doors and threaten them unless they provide some kind of treat!
However, we like a good party (and treats!) as much as the next person – so we are holding our light party to have fun, and celebrate light and hope – offering a safe space for families to come together and enjoy lighting up the darkness.
Join us at All Saints’ Church, Dudwell Lane on Tuesday October 31st 6pm – 7.15pm.