Father Joseph Illo, pastor of Star of the Sea parish in San Francisco, gave a 14-minute homily on Sunday, October 31.
In discussing the two great commandments: “If you do not love God first, you cannot possibly love your neighbor. Most churches today to some degree get it precisely backwards. They focus on social justice. Love of neighbor and then paste the veneer of religion over their secular activism. God – if He exists in the minds of most Americans – is a distant second to the concerns of this world.”
In the context of Halloween: “It’s killing us to fear what the world wants us to fear…. Take away your smart phones from children under 16. Turn off your TVs. You will not hear God. What the pandemic has revealed is our loss of trust in God.”
Father closed with good news. “At the parish, we spent a few hours with saints rather than dressing up like serial killer vampires….
“At our All Saint’s festival yesterday dozens of children, so many families, and so many single people too dressed up as saints. So many nuns yesterday on campus – all these game booths with a nun – a lay person dressed up like a nun. It’s amazing what you can get for $20 on the internet. An exact replica of the habit of St. Clare of Assisi or Mother Cabrini. They were giving out prizes to those children who could identify this or that saint.”
“Resolve this day – Halloween – to stop watching what you know is mostly false and resolve to fill your minds with God’s goodness, truth, and beauty.”
Isn’t dressing up as a saint a type of cultural appropriation? Who are you to appropriate that person’s life and holiness to yourself for your own fancy?
It reminded me of when Fr. Guido Sarducci (Don Novello) was arrested in Rome for impersonating a priest.
I suppose “cultural appropriation” has been defined by the ideological left as something, well, inappropriate. So then teaching children to honor the saints this Halloween by dressing up is inappropriate, but dressing up as vampires is just fine? The goal of Catholic education is the forming of saints. A good start for some children is dressing up like one; the next step just might be to imitate them at a deeper level. One has to start somewhere. Why not commandeer Halloween for sacred purposes? Or is that “cultural appropriation?”
God has given us the saints precisely so that we can follow their example. They are OUR saints. It’s OUR culture. By the very fact of our Baptism, we are brothers and sisters with the saints. Grace transcends biology.
“Appropriate”— Who’s trying “to appropriate Mother Cabrini’s life and holiness” to themselves? Do you honestly believe that such “appropriation” was the real motive, much less the reaction of any common-sense viewer? This was no more than a life-like representation of a saint to children whose minds [at that age] work very concretely.
Maybe you’re so “woke” that your brain is no longer awake and operating.
It will be interesting to see if you can top yourself with your next conspiracy theory.