Moving Halloween to Saturday: Treat or Trick?

Thursday, October 29, AD 2009

In recent years Halloween has gone from a primarily child-oriented holiday to an occasion of commercial importance comparable to Christmas or Easter. National retail sales figures indicate that Halloween is the 6th biggest holiday for retailers — behind Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day — and rapidly gaining ground, particularly among young adults.

The trend has now sparked a movement of sorts — led by the Spirit Halloween retail chain — to move Halloween permanently to the last Saturday in October. Their online petition at this link ( ) asks Congress to lend its official endorsement to the change, although that would not be strictly necessary since Halloween is not a federal or national holiday.

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15 Responses to Moving Halloween to Saturday: Treat or Trick?

  • Darn, I wish Spirit Halloween had a combox. Darn, darn, darn!

  • I vote (B) a concession to worldliness and indifference.
    Vigils, feast days, birthdays… the actual dates count for something. I enjoy a movable feast as much as the next guy, but it should have a better excuse behind it than grubbing for cash or extending the weekend.

  • Remember that they then consolidated both Abraham Lincoln’s and George Washington’s birthdays to “President’s Day”.

  • Halloween and All Saints have a particular significance for me since my wedding anniversay falls on All Saints. If they change it, I will have to come up with some other way to remember, so I vote no. Or maybe I can convince my wife to celebrate the solemnity of our marriage along with All Saints, rather than the actual day of our wedding?

  • I think you make a compelling argument overall. Actually changed my mind, as a matter of fact.

    As to changing the date – I actually find it to be more confusing. When I’m looking at my calendar, it’s so much easier to assess the fixed-date holidays as compared to the floating ones. “Which weekend is that on this year?”

  • For the record, I also would vote “no”.

  • Pingback: Vatican Condemnation of Halloween False « The American Catholic
  • Also, I really need to give credit here to Todd Aglialoro, now a writer for Inside Catholic, who many years ago when he worked for the Peoria Diocese Family Life Office, wrote a column for The Catholic Post titled “How Halloween Is a Very Catholic Thing.”

    It was in that article that I first came across the quote from Chesterton on paganism and Christianity. Unfortunately, I cannot find this article online anywhere, and I no longer have print back issues of The Post to refer to.

    If you happen to be reading this, Todd, thanks for the inspiration, and can you tell me where to find that article?

  • Instead of moving Halloween to Saturday, it needs to be moved right off the calendar. There is nothing good about it- junk food for kids, wild parties for adults, strangers ringing your doorbell all evening, drunks in the ER all night. Once again, America has taken a religious day and turned it into a mockery.

  • I understand your concerns, Annie, but by your standards, St. Patrick’s Day should probably be “moved right off the calendar” too.

    It lacks only junk food for kids and strangers ringing your doorbell… although strangers in an adjacent apartment who start their St. Paddy’s Day party at 2 in the afternoon are just as annoying 🙂 Likewise, it too is a religious holiday that has been pretty much turned into a caricature of itself, at least in the U.S.

    Also, I read somewhere many years ago that the government of Ireland, back in the late 50s or early 60s, briefly considered moving St. Patrick’s Day to September so there would be better weather for outdoor celebrations! Needless to say, that didn’t fly.

  • And speaking of moving holidays to weekends — if I remember correctly, students at U. of Ill. in Champaign observe something called “Unofficial St. Patrick’s Day” on the Friday or Saturday closest to the actual St. Paddy’s Day. The observance consists entirely of hanging out in bars and getting as drunk as possible.

    I suppose that no matter what happens to the Spirit Halloween petition drive, the preceding Saturday will become, if it hasn’t already, “Unofficial Halloween” for adult partying purposes anyway.

  • Goodness, perhaps someday the secularists will wish to ensure “Christmas,” which they will call “The Winter Holiday,” always falls on Friday so everyone gets a 3 day weekend.

    Awfully pesky the way things are now, when Dec. 25 can fall on a Wednesday. Once you remove the religious significance of these holidays, there’s no point to keeping to a set date.

  • Some of you should read up on history a bit.

    The reality is that the Church chose Dec 25th for Christmas in an attempt to add religious meaning to an already existent pagan holiday. There is circumstantial evidence that Jesus was actually born in April.

    Back to the holiday at hand…Halloween is and always has been a pagan holiday. The religious holiday that the Church attached to it (once again, in order to add a religious meaning to it) is All Saints Day. This petition doesn’t mention moving All Saints Day. In fact, you might end up with more people in the pews on Nov. 1st if they haven’t been out trick or treating and then stuffing themselves full of candy all night the night before.

  • Martha,

    I wasn’t aware that the Hebrews were pagans. Wasn’t Dec. 25th the date the temple was re-dedicated? It seems like a religiously significant date for the temple in Jerusalem and since Jesus refers to Himself as the temple – it makes sense, don’t you think?

    As for Halloween – move it, don’t move it – it doesn’t matter – for most of us, including the secularists, it is just a fun night to dress up act silly, beg for candy and share some frivolous entertainment with each other. There is a danger that the occult becomes cool, but I think for most people this is innocent fun. As for all the drunks, rowdy morons, witches and satanists – they are going to do what they do, with or without secular Halloween and they’ll do it on Oct 31 and/or the last Sat in Oct – do they really care?

    People are not skipping Mass on All Saints because of Halloween – how else do you account for all the other days they skip Mass?

    Holidays have the significance we give them. Christmas can be just a day to drink egg nog and get gifts. Easter can just be about chocolate eggs. We are not forced to worship God; we are just as free to worship ourselves – at least for a little while – then Bam! Halloween won’t mean a thing although some of the imagery might be familiar in hell.

  • Thanks for sharing with information. now i know more about holloween..please keep posting. I will visit again.


Wednesday, October 7, AD 2009


     White founts falling in the Courts of the sun,
     And the Soldan of Byzantium is smiling as they run;
     There is laughter like the fountains in that face of all men feared,
     It stirs the forest darkness, the darkness of his beard;
     It curls the blood-red crescent, the crescent of his lips;
     For the inmost sea of all the earth is shaken with his ships.
     They have dared the white republics up the capes of Italy,
     They have dashed the Adriatic round the Lion of the Sea,
     And the Pope has cast his arms abroad for agony and loss,
     And called the kings of Christendom for swords about the Cross.
     The cold queen of England is looking in the glass;
     The shadow of the Valois is yawning at the Mass;
     From evening isles fantastical rings faint the Spanish gun,
     And the Lord upon the Golden Horn is laughing in the sun.

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11 Responses to Lepanto

  • Capponi’s book is indeed excellent, and I strongly recommend it.

  • Thank you Dale.

    Is it Triumph good?

  • Tito,

    I found Triumph to be more exciting but Dale is right – it is awesome. If you liked Triumph make sure you get the History of Christendom by Dr. Carroll, founder of Christendom College – I think it is five or six volumes. Excellent.

    What saddens me is that we seem to have forgotten the victory at Curzolaris (Lepanto) and we are losing ground through immigration and population, especially in Europe. The West may simply wimper and die. Where are the Knights? Where are the fathers and mothers? Catholics lead the way.

    Our Lady of Victory ora pro nobis.

  • AK,

    I have read Dr. Carroll’s series, it is top notch to say the least!

    What I am currently reading is almost as good as Triumph and Dr. Carroll’s book it’s “How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization” by Thomas E. Woods. It is good reading so far.

    I will take both Dale’s and your advice and get that book.

    I hear that Hilaire Belloc’s Crusade’s book is great also.

    Our Lady of Victory ora pro nobis.

  • Dr. Woods’ book is excellent. He also hosted a few episodes based on the book on EWTN. Not on the same subject but his most recent, Meltdown, is very well done too.

    I have not read Belloc’s stuff and if I get any more books my wife might kill me. However, I did enjoy Madden’ short book about the Crusades. Also completely off topic, Crocker has an excellent book about the War for Southern Independence, the PIG to the Civil War and he specifically mentions the crown of thorns the Pope wove for President Jefferson Davis, CSA.

    You don’t sleep much do you?

  • Meltdown? I’m going to do some research and update my Amazon wish list again!

    No, don’t sleep much, but I do like to sleep.

  • Great poem from Chesterton.

    Reminds me of my school days – good work Don.

    My RCIA night was Tuesday 6th. I told them all about the feast day – “The Holy Rosary” – previously “Our Lady of Victories.”
    I gave them Crocker’s article in Crisis Magazine a year or so ago. They were all astounded.
    So then I told them about 9/11 – 11th Sept 1683 – the Battle of Vienna where the Catholic army defeated the Muslim army and sent them packing back to the Balkans.

    When I explained the same history to my daughter she was quite overwhelmed – this stuff is not taught in schools anymore – not even Catholic schools.

    The salvation of Western civilisation is in debt to the Catholic church – no mistake.

    Tell that to your average Joe on the street – you’ll be met with guffaws.

  • Unfortunately Don too many Catholics know as much about the history of their Church as a pig knows about penance. I am glad, but not surprised, that you are waging a one man campaign against this tide of ignorance!

  • God created time for us so we can journey back to Him through it. If we don’t know where we came from, how we got here, what we did right and what we did wrong; how the heck are we supposed to know where we’re going?

    The best way to demorilze a people, take away their pride (the good pride, not hubris), confuse their values and enslave them is to make them forgot their history, or better yet give them one more sympathetic to your cause.

    That’s what we have today in this country, the Western world and in the Church. The Church built Western Civilization and preserved the wisdom of the pagan philosophers, the good things from the Roman Republic and transmits the most important historical event.

    As Don Kiwi said most people would laugh at this becuase they’ve been taught that Rome fell becuase of the Babrabrians (they have no idea what global cooling had to with it) and then kingdoms cropped up that forced the working-class to work for the feudal lords and then, in typical western warmonger fashion, invaded Muslim lands until the Enlightenment, when smarter, more rational and irreligious people saved human kind from the Dark Ages.

    Irrational, decietful and woefully borring. Hence why kids can’t keep their pants up around their waist – they don’t know the history of belts.

  • I first encountered this poem in the form of an excerpt — the first four lines of the last stanza — which appeared as part of the foreword in an edition of Don Quixote that I read at age 14. I didn’t remember who wrote it, but it has always stuck in my heart and I was delighted years later to discover Chesterton was the author, and along with that, the rest of the poem.

  • Tito:

    I’m not a huge fan of Triumph. It has its moments, but Crocker’s handling of Byzantium suggested to me that a Greek guy had beaten his high school football team for the state championship and stolen his girlfriend afterwards.

    I don’t have a problem with a historian displaying his sympathies and animosities, but I prefer it to be based on something other than sheer spite.

8 Responses to The Angelic Doctor

Lest We Forget

Tuesday, November 11, AD 2008


by G.K.Chesterton

You whom the kings saluted; who refused not
The one great pleasure of ignoble days,
Fame without name and glory without gossip,
Whom no biographer befouls with praise.
Who said of you “Defeated”? In the darkness
The dug-out where the limelight never comes,
Nor the big drum of Barnum’s show can shatter
That vibrant stillness after all the drums.

Though the time comes when every Yankee circus
Can use our soldiers for its sandwich-men,
When those that pay the piper call the tune,
You will not dance. You will not move again.

You will not march for Fatty Arbuckle,
Though he have yet a favourable press,
Tender as San Francisco to St. Francis
Or all the angels of Los Angeles.

They shall not storm the last unfallen fortress,
The lonely castle where uncowed and free,
Dwells the unknown and undefeated warrior
That did alone defeat Publicity.

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4 Responses to Lest We Forget