NI Hallowe'en celebrations 'highly dangerous' say clergymen

Rev Canon David Crooks (above) said Hallowe'en in Northern Ireland is becoming a "cult".

The way in which Hallowe'en is celebrated in some parts of Northern Ireland is "highly dangerous" and "becoming a cult" according to some Church of Ireland ministers.

The comments were made during the Diocese of Derry and Raphoe's Dioscesan Synod at An Grianán Hotel in Co. Donegal on Wednesday evening.

The Rector of Taughboyne, Rev Canon David Crooks, described the celebration and street carnival as "ridiculous nonsense" and called for church leaders to "speak about it".

“Halloween, which is the eve of All Hallows – All Saints – is turning into this ridiculous nonsense,” said Canon Crooks.

“In shops and all over the place, we see all these accoutrements of witchcraft and all that kind of horrible nonsense.”

“People say ‘Oh, it’s just for the children’. Well, I think it’s sending the wrong message to children – it’s actually highly dangerous.

"It can lead children to start looking at the Internet and finding there things like tarot cards and séances, it can grow into all of that. It’s highly dangerous stuff and I think that church leaders of authority should speak about it."

Rector of the Ardstraw Group of Parishes, Rev Ivan Dinsmore described the celebrations as a "festival of paganism".

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