Polish Catholic official slams Halloween
PR dla Zagranicy
A spokesman of the Polish Bishops’ Conference has slammed Halloween as "a pagan custom, alien to our culture and tradition".
MANSOUR DE TOTH (Laszloen)/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)
The spokesman, Father Paweł Rytel-Andrianik, referred to Pope Benedict XVI's claim that Halloween "promotes the culture of death" and that it "pushes new generations towards a mentality of esoteric magic and attacks sacred and spiritual values".
Rytel-Andrianik stressed that in Poland the first days of November are a time for remembering the deceased, and that Halloween negates fundamental Christian values.
He also said that All Saints Day, which is marked by Christians on 1 November, is a joyous occasion, which carries the hope of life after death.
Many parishes and various institutions in Poland have held Holy Wins, their answer to Halloween. These are religious services coupled with processions and parties celebrating the saints of the Catholic Church. Most of these events are addressed to young people.
There is a long-standing tradition in Poland to visit family graves in November, particularly on All Saints Day on 1 November, a public holiday, and All Souls Day on 2 November.
Meanwhile, US-inspired Halloween celebrations, including pumpkin carving, trick or treating, costumes, and parties, are increasingly popular in Poland. (mk/vb)