Dear Family and Friends of St. Andrews,
What is Halloween?
Halloween is a celebration in remembrance of the dead that occurs annually on the evening of October 31. The name Halloween (sometimes spelled Hallowe’en) is a contraction of All Hallows’ Even(ing), meaning All Saints’ Evening, as it is celebrated on the evening before All Saints’ Day, also known as All Hallows’ Day. Saints have historically been known as hallows, derived from the Old English word hālig and related to the German word heilig, meaning holy.
Halloween is a mixture of customs of pagan and Christian origins. It originated from an ancient Celtic seasonal festival, known as Samhain, to mark the end of the harvest and to remember the dead that is celebrated from sunset on October 31 to sunset on November 1.
While not an official holiday, it is observed in a number of countries around the world, primarily in the West (North America and Europe) but also increasingly in Asian countries, as it provides commercial opportunities. In the United States, it is estimated to be the festival with the second-highest amount of consumer spending after Christmas.
Halloween is followed by All Saints’ Day (for which it is the vigil) on November 1 and All Souls’ Day on November 2. Together the three days of remembrance of the dead form the triduum (a religious observance lasting three days) of Hallowtide. People traditionally visit the graves of deceased relatives during this time. It is related to the Mexican holiday Day of the Dead.
This brief article from Google helps to explain Halloween and its origins. While it is certainly celebrated in the USA where I am from it is not indigeonously part of Native American Culture but like so much was brought to North America by waves of Immigrants who make up the melting pot the Country. It was the Irish who brought it to the USA in the 19th century and it soon caught on generally speaking. Today it is the second biggest celebration after Christmas.
However it is as much a Christian Holy Day when we remember the Faithfully Departed who are near and dear to us. One of our customs is to remember our departed loved ones at the intercessions during the Eucharist and opportunity will be given at this Sundays Service. So if you wish to remember anyone you may do it in one of a few ways. You may email the names here and they will be read out at Church, or you may mention their names either silently or aloud during the intercessions when we remember those who have gone before us.
Because this Sunday is a major feast day there will be only one Service at 1100. There will not be a 930 service because special music is being prepared by the choir and Music Director Stephen Craig so the choir will need the extra time before Service to rehearse. We hope to see you there.
A reminder that this is a busy time of the year and once again I want to remind you of upcoming events.
1. Sunday November 11, Remembrance Day. British Ambassador will be in attendance.
2. Sunday November 25, Patronal Feast of St. Andrew the Apostle. Parish and Auction is held after Church at Haga Forsamling. Sign up sheet is in the Church regarding food items to bring.
3. Sunday December 2, First Sunday of Advent.
4. Wednesday December 19th and Sunday December 24th, FESTIVAL OF NINE LESSONS AND CAROLS @1800.
5. Tuesday December 25th The Feast of the Nativity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Service at 1100.
Thank you for your time and consideration to these matters.
Yours in Christ,
David A. Bruce, Chaplain