QUEZON City, October 16, 2013—Who knew what else moms can do with just a little more time on their hands? To encourage their kids to follow the example of the saints, a group of homeschooling moms are organizing an ‘All Saints’ Day’ party on November 7 as an alternative to the usual blood and gore Halloween party.
“I highly encourage parents to emphasize the “All Hallows’” part of Halloween…It is, after all, the eve of the Feast of All Saints. By encouraging our kids to dress up as the saints, we also hope that we are inspiring them to be like the saints,” said Catholic homeschooling mom Tina Santiago – Rodriguez, who first talked to other homeschooling moms about an ‘All Saints’ Day’-themed party three years ago.
Kids dress up as Padre Pio, St Monica
For the past two years, some 10-20 homeschooled children, mostly from communities like Couples for Christ, Light of Jesus and Ligaya ng Panginoon have been attending ‘All Saints’ Day’parties that start off with a ‘Parade of Saints’ where the kids introduce themselves and the saint they are representing.
According to Rodriguez, saints popular among the kids are St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, St. George, St. Peter, St. Kateri of Tekakwitha, St. Monica, and St. Michael the Archangel to name a few.
The rest of the party will feature saint-inspired games like “Saint Monica’s Musical Chairs”; “Saint Anthony’s Find The Missing Objects” and “Canonize the Saint”, among others.
Kids who attend the said parties, who range from 7 months to 10 years old, also get to listen to some story-telling and share in some snacks together.
Parents even exert extra effort to bring saint-inspired snacks like last year’s “Saint Pedro Calungsod’s Biko.”
Starting your own All Saints’ Day parties
Rodriguez got the idea of a more saintly Halloween day celebration from Everest Academy in Taguig which has an annual ‘All Saints’ Carnival’, as well as from seeing similar activities of homeschooling parents in the U.S.
“I would encourage parents and teachers to organize their own versions of All Saints’ Day celebrations — in their homes, neighborhoods, communities, parishes. It need not be anything grand. What’s important is that we emphasize celebrating the saints,” she said.
All of the parents who attended the last two years’ alternative Halloween parties are members of Roman Catholics Keeping Education Real (ROCKERs) Philippines, a support group for homeschooling parents organized by Rodriguez.
Interested parents may contact Tina Santiago – Rodriguez through her blog, http://trulyrichmom.com/contact-me/ or they could email firstname.lastname@example.org She will also be responding to inquiries through her Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/trulyrichteachermamatina [Nirva’ana Ella Delacruz]