What does the Orthodox Church Think about Halloween?

The charge d’affairs of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church Metropolitan Antony (Pankanich) talks about this Anglo-American tradition, which has now spread all over the world.


A man is known by his deeds and a holiday by its spirit. If a holiday brings joy and peace, and the traditions connected with it bring goodness and warmth to people’s hearts, this is a true sign of its rightness and importance. In the opposite case it is nothing more than a colorful performance, and a masquerade of this ilk can in no way be called a holiday—it is a pseudo-holiday.

This is precisely the situation that has arisen with Halloween, which has recently come into our lives: a dubious history with unkind personages bearing neither meaning nor joy, popularizing evil spirits. The main themes of Halloween are evil spirits, death, occultism, and monsters. It is paganism in its truest form.

Photo: countryliving.com Photo: countryliving.com     

Nevertheless, people unsuccessfully try to find a “higher” meaning in Halloween and even ascribe some fringe-Christian motifs to it. In fact, many have found themselves on the hook of the businessmen who are introducing the fashion of Halloween costumes, etc. and making money on them.

The main goal of every Christian feast is the glad tidings of Christ. If there are no glad tidings, then it has no relationship to Christianity.   

We need to be extremely cautious about pseudo-holidays. Playing with evil spirits cannot lead to anything good. This is extremely dangerous for spiritual life. In fact, so is any participation in pagan festivals, like “Ivan Kupala”1 and others.

A spiritual fall can be unnoticeable at first—we think, what’s the harm in a little distraction? But a small distraction from the main road can bring fatal consequences: the loss of our orientation and a departure from the sure path. After this comes wandering in the dark. And that can become endless, even for the rest of your life. The dark spirits do not let go of a person so easily, but keep him clutched on all their hooks.

Therefore it is so important to hold on to the Truth, even in seemingly minor things, and not depart from the true path under any pretext.

Metropolitan Antony (Pakanich)
Translation by OrthoChristian.com

Union of Orthodox Journalists


1 Ivan Kupala is a pagan Slavic festival involving bonfires that takes place around the summer solstice. The name sounds like John the Baptist and therefore some confuse it with a feast of the saint.

Susan Stavros11/1/2019 10:29 am
Practicing Halloween is opening doors to evil spirits, making our most innocent children vulnerable. Ignorance is not an excuse...Evil spirits are real...doing this in the name of cute fun the devil is cunning. Parents wake up teach your children to love God and be delivered from this evil practice.
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