Trick or treaters, eh? Or as I like to call them, Satan's mongrels. There there, little demon children caterwauling up and down streets on Satan's birthday, collecting pieces of candy made by companies who support the homosexual agenda. Keep chanting your wicked words, "Trick or Treat?"
**insert spooky fog, wet with God's disappointment**
Okay, let's back up a second.
Growing up, I was taught that Christianity and Halloween, historically speaking, don't jive comfortably. There's an image painted in my head of "them that trick-or-treat!" but as a preacher's kid, it's! not! my! fault! Personally, I have only trick or treated a few times in my life, either at a friend's house, or when I was going through my rebellious 8th grade phase, getting "drunk" on non-alcoholic strawberry daiquiri mixer.
As a kid, when Halloween came around, I was regulated to church activities. There are some churches that oppose any and all relationship with Halloween, truly believing the day is a celebration of Satan himself, so proper protocol is to ignore the day and pretend it doesn't exist, kind of like premarital sex or science. Then there are more progressive churches that have adapted Halloween into a Christian celebration by calling it "Alleluia Festival" or a "Harvest Festival." And you could usually find me there.
These festivals usually involve converting the parking lot of a local Southern Baptist church, and filling it with all kinds of Jesus-endorsed activities, like a bean bag toss or a simulation of being "raptured" on the "Rapture Bounce" (think moon bounce with rented angel wings). (Kidding. Totally kidding! Though, I'm sure I've just given someone a wonderful idea.)
At an Alleluia Festival you won't see witch costumes, crypt masters or bloody vampires. Wholesome Bible costumes bop right on by. You may spot a little version of Mary and Joseph hanging by the cotton candy machine, next to the little girl who convinced her parents it is totally Christian-like to dress as a steak.
But there's a new movement among evangelical churches, beyond Alleluia Festivals, that is sweeping the country. Introducing, hell houses. It's just like a haunted house, except for totally and utterly weirder than anything Halloween could ever spawn. The idea? To scare people into wanting to avoid hell at all costs, even if it means accepting Jesus Christ.
In a hell house, the Holy Spirit comes inside of you as Satan leads you through different rooms, each acting as a dimension of hell, each dimension filled with people reenacting scenes like botched abortions, successful gay marriages, and teenagers who die in a car crash before having the opportunity to repent of their wild, daiquiri-mix-guzzling ways.
Forget about your usual zombies and ghosts. Lurking around every corner are homosexuals, atheists, addicts, feminists, and Democrats. If you survive the horrors of the heightened, baseless, manically phobic stereotypes and untruths, you get to exit the hell house and enter the embrace of white Jesus himself; he will be under white lights holding white powdered donuts, all tag-teaming you to save your soul from eternal damnation.
It should be no surprise that I have a dysfunctional relationship with Halloween. To this day I still feel awkward walking into a Halloween party dressed as a steak. I feel like I'm playing pretend, a part of a culture I never was included in on in the first place.
But I'm a team player. Happy Halloween! Man, that feels weird. Let's try this again: from my pure homo heart to your demon-happy spirit, happy Alleluia Festival. Phew, that's definitely normal.
'Til next time!