Pagan Ritual Versus Catholic and Christian Beliefs

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Pagan ritual versus Catholic and Christian beliefs Do Catholic and Christian beliefs and holidays have Pagan roots? Pope Gregory 1st said, “Converting heathens is easier if they are allowed to retain the outward forms of their traditional Pagan practices and traditions, while recasting those traditions spiritually towards the one true God instead of to their Pagan devils. “(Pagan timeline Google para6) Three of eight major Pagan holidays were converted to Christian and Catholic holidays when Christianity spread through Europe. There are many reasons this was done, one was to ensure that the Pagan worshipers would convert to Christianity. They converted the holidays to show the Pagans that they too celebrated what they celebrated and were not all bad. Many of the Pagan Gods followed and were canonized into Saints so that many of the Pagan converts would have names and faces they recognized to worship. This essay will break down the three major Pagan holidays and compare them to the Christian counter parts. Then it will show the similarities between two Pagan Gods and two Catholic Saints. Pagan, Christian, and Catholic holidays Starting on the Pagan calendar Samhain is the first holiday and celebrated on October 31st. This holiday celebrates the final harvest of the year when all things die. Samhain is related with death and the tales tell of the spirits of the dead coming back to visit. Customs were to set out small feasts for dead loved ones made of small cakes and wine, carving squash and turnips with symbols to ward off the evil spirits and let the good spirits know that they were welcome to visit. Christians converted this holiday into All Hollows Eve or Halloween; in later years it was associated with carving pumpkins, bobbing for apples, playing pranks, and dressing up as ghouls and goblins. Catholics in the Ninth Century often wondered from house to house asking for soul cakes, because the day after All Hollows Eve was known as All Soul Day. Upon receiving the soul cakes, which were plain bread cakes topped with currants, the Catholics would offer to say a prayer for the souls of the family members that had passed the previous year. This tradition in later years became great fun as trick-or-treating for candies and toys became popular. The prayers for the dead associated with begging for goodies slowly died away. The second holiday on the Pagan calendar is Yule celebrated on December 21-25. Yule was a celebration of the beginning of winter. Yule was a celebration of the conception of light. While the God of light hid from the world his seed was planted in the womb of the Goddess and as the days lengthened it was believed that the god was growing and preparing to bring renewal to the lands and crops. Christians celebrate Christmas as the miraculous conception and birth of Jesus. Both Pagan and Christians celebrate this holiday with great feasts and spending time with family. Decorations and candles were used for the celebration. Pagans often burned a Yule log which was often a log from a conifer tree,

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