Anti-evangalists: would this offend you? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 10:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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A tract handed out (with candy) on Halloween explaining why some Christains don't wish to participate, in the context of "we believe" not "you need to believe"? Would this offend you, if your child received it?


This is the text:

Fall is a time when the plants and warm days go to sleep. Over the years it has reminded people to think about death, some respond by being afraid, others by accepting it as part of nature. Many cultures take this time to honor loved ones who have died before. Halloween makes death into something fun so people feel better about it and have a good time even though they are a little scared. Sometimes people take it as a time to play pranks or use magic.

Christians often stay away from Halloween celebrations, some act like it is a normal day and others have Church parties. Part of the reason we avoid it is that we feel pranks or witchcraft would be bad, and we love God too much to want to sin. But the big reason is that we do not need to think about death. The Bible says “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16) That means that we believe we are more alive now than ever before, and that we won’t really die when our bodies pass away, but get new bodies in heaven. If that’s true, why would we fear? And why would we need a party to make us feel better? Today and every day we joyfully celebrate life, not death. And we are not afraid.
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#2 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:16 AM
 
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I would be offended. Not because of the wording, but because I don't appreciate someone handing me a sheet of their beliefs, unless I ask for them.
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#3 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:22 AM
 
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I wouldn't be offended, just annoyed because it's not even true. Most Christians 'celebrate' Halloween. I've never even met Christians IRL who are opposed to any Halloween fun.

FTR, I'm Christian.

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#4 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:25 AM
 
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It would irritate me because of the subtlities in wording. It's an attempt to jab at those who don't agree with them (the witchcraft bit) while trying to claim it's for another reason (not fearing death and celebrating life).

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#5 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:27 AM
 
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i wouldn't be offended. i think it's kind of odd to be offended by someone handing you something of their choice when you have gone to THEIR door requesting something from them. i we want to go to people's homes we need to be open with what they're going to give us, ykwim?

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#6 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:29 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OtherMother'n'Madre View Post
It would irritate me because of the subtlities in wording. It's an attempt to jab at those who don't agree with them (the witchcraft bit) while trying to claim it's for another reason (not fearing death and celebrating life).
Exactly. I'm not offended if someone just wants to hand me something that explains what they believe. But any suggestion that what I believe is wrong, bad, etc...? That's offensive to me.
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#7 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:31 AM
 
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I would be offended, not horribly so, I wouldn't egg your house or anything, ! If you don't want to celebrate Halloween, fine...just turn out your porch light, but please don't preach to my child.
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#8 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:33 AM
 
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Originally Posted by magstphil View Post
i wouldn't be offended. i think it's kind of odd to be offended by someone handing you something of their choice when you have gone to THEIR door requesting something from them. i we want to go to people's homes we need to be open with what they're going to give us, ykwim?
But you're not just radomly knocking on doors. People who choose to participate in Halloween usually indicate their willingness by turning on a porch light or something. I don't think religious tracts are at all to be expected under those circumstances. Would it be ok if I decided to hand out condoms and a safe sex brochure to your kids?
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#9 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:34 AM
 
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I would be offended. You're handing something to my *kid* If you don't want to do halloween, turn off your porch light and don't answer the door. *That* won't bother me.

-Angela
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#10 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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It actually is true where I live, everyone I know who is Christian either has a Trunk or Treat at thier church or turns off the lights and hides. It's the midwest.
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#11 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:43 AM
 
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Originally Posted by andreac View Post
If you don't want to celebrate Halloween, fine...just turn out your porch light, but please don't preach to my child.
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post
I would be offended. You're handing something to my *kid* If you don't want to do halloween, turn off your porch light and don't answer the door. *That* won't bother me.
:

Why would you be participating in Halloween to explain why some Christians DON'T participate in Halloween? Obviously, if you're giving out candy, you're not one of those Christians who don't participate in Halloween - you're participating BY answering the door to Trick-or-Treaters. So, if you're therefore NOT opposed to celebrating Halloween, why are you speaking up for those who are? Can't they speak up for themselves, if they so choose? And wouldn't what they have to say, and how they have to say it, be more accurate for them than anything you come up with?
I'm truly confused by the logic of participating in Halloween in order to give reasons not to participate in Halloween. :

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#12 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:50 AM
 
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As a Christian who celebrates Halloween I wouldn't be offended, but I also wouldn't read it. It would be tossed the second I realized what it was. What is the point of giving these out?

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#13 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:51 AM
 
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Originally Posted by andreac View Post
But you're not just radomly knocking on doors. People who choose to participate in Halloween usually indicate their willingness by turning on a porch light or something. I don't think religious tracts are at all to be expected under those circumstances. Would it be ok if I decided to hand out condoms and a safe sex brochure to your kids?
it's the risk i take for going to your door. which is why i generally don't go trick or treating with my kids unless i know the neighborhood and the doors i'm going to.

i'm sorry i just don't think choosing to be offended by someone participating in trick or treating THEIR way at THEIR door is productive. their fully in their right to do it. it's like me being offended that someone gave my daughter a bag of peanuts when we knocked on their door. i could choose to get upset because she's allergic to peanuts or i can understand that people have the right to hand out what they want from THEIR door, just as i do, and i can monitor what she is receiving and act accordingly if i'd rather her not have it.

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#14 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:53 AM
 
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ITA with lotusdebi and the two people she quoted. The subtle language in those things is really upsetting to me.

We are Catholic and on Halloween, we're not "celebrating death" or practicing witchcraft. My son is dressing like a knight, my daughters like a pony and a puppy, and they're getting free candy. That evening we'll go through the candy, pick through it and donate the excess to a DV shelter or kids in the hospital. The next day, on All Saints Day, we go to Mass and pray for all the saints in Heaven. Not exactly black magic, KWIM?

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#15 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by magstphil View Post
it's the risk i take for going to your door. which is why i generally don't go trick or treating with my kids unless i know the neighborhood and the doors i'm going to.

i'm sorry i just don't think choosing to be offended by someone participating in trick or treating THEIR way at THEIR door is productive. their fully in their right to do it. it's like me being offended that someone gave my daughter a bag of peanuts when we knocked on their door. i could choose to get upset because she's allergic to peanuts or i can understand that people have the right to hand out what they want from THEIR door, just as i do, and i can monitor what she is receiving and act accordingly if i'd rather her not have it.
(we crossposted)

I understand your reasoning completely, but to me, the tract itself is what is offensive. I don't care if dentists choose to pass out toothbrushes instead of candy, or if a church chooses to pass out a TACTFUL pamphlet instead of candy, but they are giving my children what I consider to be extremely hateful and offensive literature. And I'm not the only one - almost every person I know is offended by them; they're very anti-Catholic and anti-athiest...and, well, anti-everyone-but-the-people-who-wrote-them.

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#16 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by alegna View Post
I would be offended. You're handing something to my *kid* If you don't want to do halloween, turn off your porch light and don't answer the door. *That* won't bother me.

-Angela
Exactly.

Honestly if someone gave that to my kid, I would go back to thier house & rip them a new one. But we only trick or treat at friends & families houses so we fortunately don't get that kind of garbage.
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#17 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:57 AM
 
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I can't say that it would deeply offend me, but I don't think it's terribly accurate and I think it's inappropriate. People aren't taking their kids trick or treating to be preached at. IMO, it's manipulative to lure kids in with candy and then hand them a tract on why Halloween is "bad" and "sinful". If you don't want to participate, then don't.
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#18 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 11:59 AM
 
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Originally Posted by andreac View Post
But you're not just radomly knocking on doors. People who choose to participate in Halloween usually indicate their willingness by turning on a porch light or something. I don't think religious tracts are at all to be expected under those circumstances. Would it be ok if I decided to hand out condoms and a safe sex brochure to your kids?
Great way of putting it!
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#19 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:00 PM
 
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Most Christians around here participate in Halloween.

It's unnecessary, imo. If you don't want to participate, just don't hand out anything, shut your porch light off and be done with it. Making children and parents defensive on Halloween is just petty.

And, I totally wouldn't read it at all. It would get chucked.
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#20 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:01 PM
 
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If I wanted my Son to be given religious tracts for halloween we would go to the local christian church.
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#21 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:03 PM
 
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Originally Posted by nova22 View Post
(we crossposted)

I understand your reasoning completely, but to me, the tract itself is what is offensive. I don't care if dentists choose to pass out toothbrushes instead of candy, or if a church chooses to pass out a TACTFUL pamphlet instead of candy, but they are giving my children what I consider to be extremely hateful and offensive literature. And I'm not the only one - almost every person I know is offended by them; they're very anti-Catholic and anti-athiest...and, well, anti-everyone-but-the-people-who-wrote-them.
that's understandable. there's stuff that really offends me in this world but people passing out anti-holiday/religious literature more annoys me than anything else. i don't give it my time, ykwim? it gets a roll of the eyes and a toss in the trash (although i hate wasting paper like that! it's a peeve of mine. if something is printed i feel the need to read it to validate it being printed on a precious resource. i'm weird. ).
this comes from having lots and lots of those pamphlets dumped on me as anti-Mormon literature growing up. at first i was so hurt and offended and i would argue it with my well-meaning friend. and then i realized there just isn't any use. i'll allow them their beliefs and i'll stay over here and have mine. if i don't like it i just won't participate by reading it. and i don't have enough energy to waste on being offended by people exercising their freedom of religion and passive-aggressive bashing.

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#22 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:03 PM
 
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If it were realy important to the person they could turn their porch light off and then post a tract on their door. That way if someone doesn't notice the no porch light they would stop and read it before knocking/ringing the doorbell. That way you (general you) are explaining why you don't participate but aren't handing out a bunch of papers that are likely to get tossed (enviro friendly option! ) and it's less likely to be viewed as preaching to them or forcing it on them or being dishonest/manipulative.

But yes, it does seem a tad oxymornic to say as a Christain you don't participate as you are participating by handing stuff out.

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#23 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:05 PM
 
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If you don't want to celebrate Halloween, fine...just turn out your porch light, but please don't preach to my child.
and before you are going to talk about someone else's religion(witchcraft) get informed. Just do not assume.
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#24 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:05 PM
 
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I wouldn't be offended, but my kids would totally poke fun at the lack of logic behind the statement. My 10 yr old would probably pick out the references to "fear of death..." We LOVE halloween, it's our favorite holiday, we look forward to it all year long because we love to dress up. We plan our costumes out months in advance, change our minds several times, and plant pumpkins in July so they'll be ready to line the walkway with on halloween. We find all the local costume contests and competitively plot out how we'll win.

This year, I"ll be about 6 weeks from the birth of our 6th baby and my costume is going to be a fortune-telling vending machine. I'm using a PVC and cardboard box frame, and my belly will be the crystal ball. I better win something!

My 13 yr old would poke fun at the idea that halloween doesn't glorify God. If our days are numbered, then getting "comfortable" and dealing with our fears of "the end of this physical life" would have to be a good idea, wouldn't it. Yea though I walk through the Valley of death... Why on earth would it be evil to celebrate the inevitability of our passing- if- that's what halloween symbolizes to you? If you dug up a dead body- Christian or not- it would look icky. It's just our physical body. Costumes that are creepy are just a reflection of whatever the wearer decided to project that night. If it's bothersome, dress up like an Angel or something.

We don't do gruesome blood-n-guts costumes at our house, we are brides, ballerinas, cowgirls, pirates, cheerleaders, pageant queens, and someone is always a witch (gotta love the long black wigs and fake nails). Dressing up is fun- every kid knows that. Dressing up and leaving the house in your costume after dark, to go collect candy with friends, that is super-fun. In fact, it's the one time of year in my house, that the kids are allowed to eat that much candy.

I think it's silly to deny yourselves one of our absolutely meaningless social-cultural holidays because of God. God doesn't care if you trick-or-treat. It doesn't need to be justified by adding a religious script to the candies. turn off the porch light but don't try convincing little kids that they're going to hell or something, that's rude.

I think you're giving more energy to the dark side than is necessary, it's just halloween.
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#25 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:06 PM
 
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But yes, it does seem a tad oxymornic to say as a Christain you don't participate as you are participating by handing stuff out.
oh i know! that and "we won't participate in that Pagan holiday" and then they have a "harvest festival" instead which is more Pagan then the commercial costumes and passing out of candy. :

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#26 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:09 PM
 
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Originally Posted by nova22 View Post
(we crossposted)

And I'm not the only one - almost every person I know is offended by them; they're very anti-Catholic and anti-athiest...and, well, anti-everyone-but-the-people-who-wrote-them.
Well, I am a Christian and I don't give a hoot one way or the other about Halloween because I don't place any religious basis on it. It isn't really a celebration of anything anymore. It's just a time for kids to dress up and run around eating too much candy. HaHa!

That said, I guess I kinda feel a little "meh" about the situation. In a way I feel like, if you don't believe that you are right about something, even enough to tell others what you believe... what's the point of believing anything. These people believe they are right and believe that it is actually a sin to participate in the holiday. They also believe that it is against God's Will for them not to tell you that you are doing something for which you might "go to hell." As judgemental as the pamphlet sounds, I do believe they have a good intention, however misguided. So, I wouldn't be mad. Chances are your kid is too hyped up on sugar and being dressed up to read some boring old pamphlet, and you can throw it away if you don't want it around.

As a side note, around here, parents drop their kids off in unknown neighborhoods by the truckloads all the time for trick-or-treat. If your porich light is off, they will pound on the door and look in the windows to see if you are home. They are quite persistant. They did this to my dad one year when he ran out of candy. He turned the light off, but they just kept knocking and knocking. He finally ended up giving them bada of microwave popcorn and even packages of ketchup from a resturant to get them to leave!
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#27 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:12 PM
 
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These people believe they are right and believe that it is actually a sin to participate in the holiday.
And by telling everyone it's a sin (by answering the door and handing out tracts) they are in fact participating and therefore sinning.

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#28 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by OtherMother'n'Madre View Post
And by telling everyone it's a sin (by answering the door and handing out tracts) they are in fact participating and therefore sinning.
but to them they are merely "spreading the good word" and not participating in that they are not dressing up, going door to door, etc

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#29 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:16 PM
 
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I don't find "spreading the word" to those who don't want to hear it acceptable. It is rude and presumptuous at best.

-Angela
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#30 of 213 Old 10-16-2007, 12:17 PM
 
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Originally Posted by magstphil View Post
but to them they are merely "spreading the good word" and not participating in that they are not dressing up, going door to door, etc
Like I said in my OG post, I think it's manipulative to lure kids in with candy and then hand them a tract that tells them what they are doing is "bad" and "sinful". Not only is that illogical (they ARE participating by handing out candy) but it's sneaky and in poor taste.
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