It occurs in a month full of and surrounded by relevant observances and seasons: All Saints and All Souls, when we remember the dead; Thanksgiving, when we express gratitude; Advent, when some of us anticipate Word-made-flesh.
All Saints' Day also marks the first day of Transgender Awareness Month, with its own equivalent annual vigil, the International Transgender Day of Remembrance to commemorate those slain in anti-transgender hate crimes.
In the Bible, blessings and curses are not 'how-to' instructions. Instead, blessings and curses create a set of values, an ethos that shapes how people are to understand God, themselves, and the world.
Celebrating death, especially with food, seemed so strange to me as South American Latino. When I asked about this to my Mexican friends they said that it was a way to celebrate the life that the dead person had had in this world.
Halloween may be silly on the surface, but Samhain offers us the opportunity to face the deeper difficulties of life and death. When you've had your fill of candy corn and costumes, take a moment to step outside: A new year is beginning.
When you read the complete stories of the lives of these saints and shift your focus from the gruesome details of their martyrdoms and extreme ascetical practices, you might meet people who can teach you about being who you are.