Community celebrates the real meaning of Halloween

While thousands of small ghosts and goblins, witches and wizards, celebrate Halloween around the UK this evening - with parties and trick or treating - other children will be taking part in the much older celebration of All Hallows' Eve, as today was originally called.

One Catholic group working to revive this ancient Christian festival is the Cor-Lumen Christi community, based in Chertsey, Surrey. Last year - in the special year of Jubilee - they launched their 'Night of Light' with a special vigil Mass at St Anne's church in Chertsey, followed by all night Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.

There were treats for the children including lighting a special candle, sweets and toys, bonfires and dressing up as saints. Members placed candles in their windows and wore white as a symbol of their allegiance to Christ.

Tonight they will be holding their second celebration - but this time they will be joined by hundreds of churches and parish groups in more than 12 countries around the world. Since last year, the Night of Light has been been endorsed by several dioceses and many clergy and religious, including Archbishop Vincent Nichols.

Organiser Damian Stayn said: "We had a tremendous response last year. Many more groups will be joining us on this All Hallows Eve. "Halloween is the festival when we celebrate the victory of light over darkness in the lives of God's holy ones in heaven. Jesus is the 'Light of the world'; the saints lived by that light, and became beacons in their own times. We too are called to live out this vocation: to be the 'Light of the world' today."

The Cor-Lumen community started about 11 years ago. There are 45 members. They gather for community prayer and music and participate in outreach work.

For more information visit their website on:

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