I was having breakfast with a parishioner friend over at one of the Jalan Kayu food stall, where we had some prata with teh halia and tehchino.
Over the course of the conversation, our subject matter came to the festivity of Halloween and how does it square with our Christian faith. Our current understanding to this seemed to have been muddled by the overwhelming presence of the secular and the practices that tend to border on the pagan realm. Its actual intention certainly had been Christian but somehow all this have been hijacked by the forces of consumerism, pagan lore and other urban legends that one wonders where faith begins and superstitious mumbo jumbo ends.
Here states the point clearly concerning Halloween (or Hallowe'en): Solemnity celebrated on the first of November. It is instituted to
vast panoply of scary creatures [of] the human imagination ..." has been made available to them. Unfortunately, this type of imagination has not been carefully qualified to them concerning the influences and effects that can do them no good, thinking that all this is harmless or for the sake of entertainment.
Fr Barron has a reason for this rather taken-for-granted attitude which may the be symptom of our generation today: we are, by nature, wired for God, but in this time and age, our very deep aspirations for the divine and the supernatural have been deprived or suppressed, this suppression thus brings about an effect of a coming out or an acting out of an alternative that expresses itself in forms in what we now see in this fascination for monsters, zombies, vampires and the dark supernaturalism powers and their ilk. So, for this night, there are opportunities that abound all over town and in entertainment places where Halloween would be celebrated and enjoyed within this view that centers on the supernatural dark of things, and all in the name of fun and harmless enjoyment.
I may not be too far in saying that some of our people of the faith also do join in these 'festivities'. This begs the question: Could we be better off celebrating this vigil of Hallow's Eve in a much more fitting manner that do give honour to the saints and the dead in the light of God's love rather than engaging in activities that celebrate the dark?
While at Vespers and Adoration this evening with the seminarians, I found my answer. It was a long time since I attended one, where my whole being was in attention to the celebration, in the wonder and awe of the Eucharistic presence of the Lord in the monstrance during adoration for the Evening Prayer I for All Saints. The singing of the hymns by the seminarians in the chapel attenuated with the structure of the building and gave their voices almost angelic-like and there was the palpable presence of the divine and I could almost, just almost, touch the hems of the multitude of saints and those who have gone before us in heaven. That powerful and awesome was the feeling and I would recommend this form of adoration incorporated with Vespers to welcome All Saints on this eve.
It is as if to bring about a choice to be made to the following question, which was mentioned in M vs M: "... It’s what Jesus calls the broad and the narrow way and it boils down to this: the Monster or the Monstrance."