Christian students opt for Halloween alternatives

Davy Vargo

While many Kent State students celebrated Halloween this weekend in downtown Kent, senior special education major Christina Watson will not be celebrating Halloween at all.

“I grew up not celebrating Halloween because that was our choice, and my parents choice, as Christians,” said Watson, a special education major. “I do not celebrate it because I do not agree with it.”

Watson said she doesn’t believe Halloween is a part of Christianity’s culture.

“We as Christians don’t celebrate Hanukkah, we don’t celebrate Wiccan equinoxes (and) we don’t celebrate Halloween — it’s not conducive to Christianity,” said Watson, who attends the campus H2O church.

But Buck Wilson, leader of the Navigators, a Christian group on campus, has a different view.

“If the culture took it more seriously, as a thing of worship, or demonic, maybe we would rethink that,” Wilson said. “It’s kind (of) a fun tradition at this point, separated from beliefs. If it was more of a faith-based celebration, maybe we would rethink that. But I don’t think that it is.”

Wilson said he’s hosting a Halloween party, and converted his garage into a place where Navigators can relate to students.

“We want to create an alternative for other people to come to,” Wilson said. “We want to break the Christian stereotype that parties are lame (and) that we don’t have much fun. We can throw a fun dance party, we can have all kinds of fun games — it’s gonna be a lot of fun, without the regret in the morning.”

Josh Bodziony, a senior educational studies major and Navigators attender, views Halloween similarly.

Bodziony became a Christian after coming to Kent State. But he said being a Christian doesn’t change his opinion on Halloween. His parents owned a costume store, so Halloween brings back memories of being very busy in the store.

“It was a really big part of my childhood,” Bodziony said. He said he likes getting dressed up, and always viewed Halloween as a fun time, not a scary, evil time.

Ryan Krantz, a sophomore criminology and justice studies major, is another Christian who celebrates Halloween alternatively.

“I don’t even have a costume,” Krantz said. He generally attends the Navigators Halloween party and then goes downtown with friends, like Bodziony, just to look at the costumes.

Franklin Forsell, an attender of the Christian group, Young Life, also views Halloween positively.

“I consider it like the pagans consider it,” Forsell said. He said pagans saw it as a day to ward off the devil and this kind of thinking would make him want to celebrate Halloween more.

The Christian group Crusade For Chris invited attendees to come to the weekly meeting in costume.

Holly Martin, a junior nursing major and CRU attender, planned to attend the CRU meeting dressed as Rey from Star Wars. She said she thinks Christians can celebrate Halloween without promoting satanic-type beliefs.

“I think some people, when they celebrate Halloween, probably do celebrate the occult aspects of it,” Martin said. “But you can dress up in a costume and eat candy without really celebrating the spiritual — or occult — side of it.”

Davy Vargo is the student life reporter, contact her at [email protected].