When we were kids in the '70s, Halloween was totally normal. Everyone in our ward lived in the same town, and we had cool parties at the church. We wore masks and costumes to go trick-or-treating. It was totally normal by my current nonLDS neighborhood standards.
But by the time I had kids of my own, masks were not allowed, the kids are called upon to do the trunk-or-treat instead of visiting their friends and neighbors for holiday fun and candy. And when they did decide to have a Halloween activity, it was definitely no party. More like a YM/YW meeting with face paint and a spider web.
The trunk-or-treats are a buffoons paradise. And what's funny is that the only ones who go to the trunkortreat are the leadership wives, and the kiss-ups. The kids don't go either unless they are too little to say otherwise.
A lot has changed since those days when people were allowed to be people and to have fun. Nowadays they are expected to "stand in Holy places" which means to pretend you are in the temple everywhere you go, and apparently to act like you are at a funeral.
I had a similar experience growing up in Utah. It used to be normal here. Everyone participated in trick-or-treat. There was no stupid trunk or treat substitution. I even remember that for the weekday Primary that was the last one before Halloween, we did not have to have the usual Primary songs and lesson. Instead when we showed up for primary that week we sang songs like, "There's No Such Thing as a Witch," we heard an innocently spooky Halloween story or two and we had refreshments like donuts and apple cider. I vaguely remember wearing a costume (including mask) in the church, too, but am not sure it was to the primary-before-Halloween meeting. Of course, regular primary in those days didn't used to be such a brainwashing session as it is now....we had semi-fun, normal activities and our lessons were benign things like "I can be grateful" rather than today's "I must hang on the prophet's every word and obey church law to the letter so that I can go to the temple someday...otherwise bad things will happen."
Even then, when door-to-door trick or treat was supported and participated in by almost every house in the community, parents tended to take their kids only to the houses where they knew the people well. THis, in my heavily mormon neighborhood, translated largely to going to fellow church members' homes. My parents were good friends with the few token Catholics in our town and when we would show up on their doorstep, they got excited that kids had stopped by and deemed their house an acceptable place to trick or treat. They always gave out full size candy bars because hardly anyone showed up and they were so thrilled when they got trick-or-treaters. Halloween was a lot more fun in those days.
I was a kid in the 90s in northern Utah, and as far as I know Halloween was the same as everywhere else. We wore whatever costumes we wanted to (I was girly so the only "scary" costume I had was a vampire costume) and we went trick-or-treating throughout the town with our friends and/or siblings.
On the one hand, I can see how this is an appealing social activity for churches to organize. On the other hand, did tscc give some sort of statement about kids not being allowed to trick or treat? That seems a bit odd.
At our ward trunk or treat people bring their favorite chilie recipe for all to eat, the kids play games where they win prizes, then they go around to the cars to gather candy. As far as I can tell they are having fun and most of them still go out on halloween night. The thing about masks is that there is a safety issue in that masks can impair ones vision, which can lead to accidents and when there is a group of people together, including both kids and adults (like at trunk or treat), it's best to be able to identify who everyone is so there is no problem with strangers. I think this is mostly an unwritten policy.
Halloween party? Seems really paranoid. I could see this if the policy applied to adults, but not to kids. Besides, even with masks on, people recognize others by their voice, body type, who they are with, ect... A ward's family party.. wouldn't everyone be there with multiple people? I guy who shows up randomly, alone.. would stand out with or without a mask.
I remember our ward having a Halloween party in the church building in the early 90's. They emphatically told everyone NOT to dress up, though, because they did not want to invite any evil spirits into the church.
on the last day before Halloween when primary was in the afternoon on a weekday.
Masks and cross dressing were fine. Instead of regular primary lessons, there were carnival games like ring toss and apple bobbing, refreshments, fortune telling, and prizes, and the halls and classrooms were draped in lavish decorations.
When actual Halloween evening arrived, all of the kids trick-or-treated. They did this a day early on Saturday if the holiday fell on a Sunday.
Those were the good old days.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/30/2010 08:18AM by Cheryl.