Halloween happenings around the diocese

A boy with his face painted as a skull poses for a photo Oct. 26 during the start of the "Las Catrinas" festival, ahead of the Day of the Dead in Cupula, Mexico. The annual Day of the Dead is observed Nov. 1 and 2. (CNS photo/Alan Ortega, Reuters)
A boy with his face painted as a skull poses for a photo Oct. 26 during the start of the “Las Catrinas” festival, ahead of the Day of the Dead in Cupula, Mexico. The annual Day of the Dead is observed Nov. 1 and 2. (CNS photo/Alan Ortega, Reuters)

Catholics across the Diocese of Phoenix are celebrating Halloween, the eve of the feast of All Saints Day. Sacred Heart School in Prescott and St. Francis Xavier School hosted Trunk or Treat outings last weekend. The latter also featured a chili cook-off.
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Halloween from the Experts

While you’re deciding which Halloween and Día de los Muertos celebration fits into your schedule, listen to:

Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted in an interview on Mixed Voices. The interview is in English with Spanish subtitles.

Brian Canon, director of evangelization at a Scottsdale parish, who reflects on the meaning of Halloween in the latest OLPH Airwaves podcast.

Fr. Ernesto Reynoso, who reflects on Halloween, Día de los Muertos and All Saints and All Souls Day on The Bishop’s Hour. Cue up the 5:45 mark.[/quote_box_right]Consider attending some of these other Halloween-like celebrations that have passed through our media channels in recent days:

  • All Saints Parish in Mesa is hosting similar celebrations at its Trunk or Treat and Chili Cook-off Oct. 31. A canned food item for the Society of St. Vincent de Paul gets you in. Also expect costume and decorating contests, games, crafts and hayrides.
  • Catholics and their friends of all ages can celebrate Halloween at The Refuge, a local coffee shop and wine bar in Phoenix’s art district that supports the refugee program at Catholic Charities Community Services. Join in Friday Night Trivia at 7 p.m. and come in costume for a chance to win prizes.
  • If Halloween night plans have you near the All Saints Newman Center in Tempe, drop by for a party there. There will be food, music and a costume contest with prizes for the most creative, most religious, and the one requiring the most explanation.
  • Our Lady of Guadalupe Monastery is hosting Fiesta de los Santos Nov. 1. Various mid-morning start times have been published, but it lasts until 7 p.m. at its monastery north of Loop 101/Thomas Road in Phoenix. It features food, music, matachines, a fashion show, games and raffles.
  • St. Mary’s Basilica invites the community to its Día de los Muertos celebration 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Nov. 2. This first-time effort is a partnership with Xcio Inc. It features a community procession with Mariachi’s, interactive altars to remember loved ones — pets included — children’s activities and  education. This staff blog from St. Benedict Parish in Ahwatukee gives a background of the celebration.
    At. the basilica, also expect an Artisan Mercado and vendors, car show, food and live entertainment. Optional canned good donations at the door benefits the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.
  • Back on school campuses, students at San Francisco de Asís in Flagstaff will observe Día de los Muertos Nov. 3 by bringing photos, mementos, flowers or other special items for an altar display that will honor and remember their loved ones. There will be short prayer service and ballet folklorico dancers.
    The festivities follow a Trunk or Treat event on Halloween. Students will donate $1 to cancer research for the privilege of wearing a costume or free dress. Costumes can be sports-themed or saints.

    Children pick out treats during the Halloween carnival at Santa Cruz Catholic School in Tucson, Ariz., Oct. 24. Such traditions bring together hundreds of students, parents and neighbors for a night of entertainment and fun. (CNS photo/Nancy Wiechec)
    Children pick out treats during the Halloween carnival at Santa Cruz Catholic School in Tucson, Ariz., Oct. 24. Such traditions bring together hundreds of students, parents and neighbors for a night of entertainment and fun. (CNS photo/Nancy Wiechec)
  • That same day in Phoenix, Xavier College Preparatory will show prospective students what it’s like to strive for sainthood during an 8th grade day at the all-girls campus. An open house follows Nov. 2, the feast of All Souls Day.
  • Students at Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Tempe are amid their annual pumpkin decorating effort. Each classroom gives the final product to Phoenix Children’s Hospital. They’ll ultimately give away some of their candy too. Dr. Alan Cutis of Curtis Orthodontics pays $1 per pound via a candy buy back effort after Halloween. He sends the candy to troops serving overseas via Operation Gratitude.