3 reasons to take your kids trick or treating this Halloween
PLUS: our guide to the best Bible-themed Halloween costumes
Aussies are busy trimming their houses with ghoulish cobwebs and creepy-faced pumpkins as the pagan turned Christian turned secular festival of Halloween approaches. Here are three reasons you might consider getting out the dress-ups and taking your kids door to door.
1. You could make a new friend
There’s nothing quite like knocking on your neighbour’s door, while dressed up as Professor Dumbledore, to break the ice and get to know them a little. You never know, it could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
2. You can use the opportunity to tell your kids about faithful Christians who have died and gone to heaven
November 1 originally marked the end of the summer months (in the northern hemisphere) and, at that time, the pre-Christian Celts believed the ‘Spirits of the Departed’ returned to their homes to visit loved ones. This is the same idea behind Day of the Dead celebrations (which originated in Mexico but have spread across the world and intermingled with Halloween). Masks and other disguises were worn to frighten off evil spirits who were trying to cut in on the action.
In the 7th Century, Pope Boniface rebadged this festival, and the evening before was also sanctified as All Hallows’ Eve, or Halloween. It was a time to remember the faithful believers of past ages and to pray that we, the living, might learn from their good example.
As you go door to door, you might tell your kids about where Halloween comes from, and also some faithful Christians you know who have passed away.
3. You might have a little fun
With so many competing demands on our time and what feels like the never-ending cycle of bad news from around the world, you might enjoy the chance to leave the smartphone at home and be in the moment with your family and community. Your kids will probably thank you for it.
What to Wear on Halloween
If you’re looking for a little inspiration for your Halloween dress ups this year, we suggest looking no further than the Bible. Here are eight Bible-themed costumes to get you started.
8. Three Wise Men
A little effort is required, but these historical figures will be instantly recognisable, especially if you are able to source some gold, frankincense and myrrh to present to those who greet you with chocolate and lollies.
7. Holy Spirit
The easiest costume out there. All you need is a pair of scissors to cut some eye holes, and an old white sheet.
6. The Plagues of Egypt
You could have a lot of fun with this one. With a group of friends, decorate t-shirts with blood, frogs, ping pong balls as hail, lice (and to add effect, mess up your hair as if you’ve been scratching), plastic flies, or locusts. Someone can wear all black to represent the plague of darkness and another can dress as a sick animal for the plague on livestock. If you’re good with makeup, create boils on someone’s face, but you may not have anyone willing to be this plague.
This one takes A LOT of toilet paper, but the good news is you don’t have to worry about keeping it all on as you walk around. That’s the point: Jesus brought Lazarus back to life!
4. Noah’s Ark
There has never been a better use for the animal onesie that you have been stashing in your wardrobe. Get a few friends together, and go as the very first zoo. Don’t forget the face paint – those whiskers won’t paint themselves.
3. Jonah & The Whale
Create a cardboard cutout in the shape of a whale (fish) and paint it grey. Attach it to some rope to hang over your shoulders, and voila, you are Jonah inside the whale.
2. David & Goliath
The key to a good David costume is a slingshot. But play safe, please. Also, make sure you get the face paint out and make yourself look “ruddy and handsome”. Some leather sandals and a white robe won’t go astray either.
An age-old ‘go to’ for Halloween. Turn yourself into an angel by dressing all in white, and making a halo out of pipe cleaners, or whatever white material you have nearby.