Reformation day

Thursday night we watched a beautiful sunset as we drove home from our usual Thursday flurry of Irish dance, sewing, music lessons, and ensemble rehearsal (during which we’d fallen in love with the arrangement of “Coventry Carol” we’re singing!).
As we pulled into the compound we saw some friends outside, decorating their bushes with glow-in-the-dark fluff that looked like cobwebs. Other houses had similar decor. We sighed, and then I laughed remembering a conversation with our Irish dance teacher earlier that morning.
“So what are you doing this weekend?”
“Nothing,” said Hannah.
“No, Reformation Day.” I corrected.
“What’s that?” asked Ms. Siobhan.
“Well… um…” Last week it had come up that she had been raised strict Catholic. Talk about awkward. “We don’t ‘do’ Halloween, so on October 31 we have a party and dress up like Bible characters or famous Christians.”
“Isn’t All Saints Day November first?”
“Yes… but we do it on the 31 because that was the day Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses… to the door of the Church in Wittenburg…”

So this is what we do, not Halloween. We do not celebrate a tradition that came from the superstition that on October 31 the boundary between the dead and living were blurred and spirits roamed the earth, and the Celts celebrated by dressing up in costumes.

We do many things on Reformation Night. Some are more goofy…
(Some of us are goofy as well!)

But not all.
We started off this time by singing “For All The Saints.”
Then we had everyone’s favorite part: guessing. So we still get the fun of dressing up, we pick famous Christians or Bible characters to dress up as – but we don’t tell anyone who we are.
Can you guess?

A. (Watchmaker, lived during World War II)

B. (A queen in the Bible)

C. (Wife of a famous missionary to China)

D. (A Scottish covenanter, drowned at 18 for refusing to recant. Died with Psalm 25 and Romans 8 on her lips).
E. (Missionary to China. Her last name started with ‘K.’)

F. (New Testament soldier. He doesn’t have a name)

G. (Missionary to Africa. “White Ma”)

H. (No hints on this one. Just a question and his response… “Did you eat worms?” “Yes, I went on a diet of worms to get rid of this!” *points to ‘fat’*)
And yes, this is what Nate’s haircut yesterday was all about. He’s been wanting to shave his head for a long time now, and this was an excuse…

I. (Wife of a reformer whose 500th birthday we celebrated this year).

Then we have a Bible scavenger hunt…

We were driving home and stopped by a friend’s house to show them Nate’s hair cut.
“Can you spare some food for a poor, starving monk?”

“Yes, it’s real!”

Bail O Dia Ort,


4 thoughts on “Reformation day

  1. Laura Elizabeth says:

    Oh, I like the idea of Reformation day on Oct. 31! And I love the story of Margaret Wilson. I once tried to write a story about her, but my knowledge of her is too sketchy. I did write a verse of poetry about her, though:
    Black rose the fearful tide,
    Up to the martyr’s chin;
    “Swear the oath!” the people cried,
    But she would not give in.
    I really like that picture of (Nate, is it?) at the door of your friend’s house, the one where it says, “Can you spare some food for a poor, starving monk?” Ha ha!


  2. Kyleigh says:

    Laura – So do we. I’d heard about people doing it for a while, and then 4 years ago we did it for the first time and have always done it since!
    I love her story as well! Especially how she died with Romans 8 on her lips. Not a day goes by when I don’t think of that chapter… it’s so RICH!
    And I love your poem on her! You should write more of it!
    She and Corrie Ten Boom are such great examples, especially in how to face death in a way that glorifies God. I love the quote by Corrie ten Boom – “Death is not a pit, but a tunnel.”
    Yes, that was really funny! We were considering having him say “Whenever a coin in the coiffer rings, a soul from purgatory springs!” but Nate didn’t want to.


    • Laura Elizabeth says:

      “Whenever a coin in the coffer rings, the soul from purgatory springs!”. My brother and sisters and I love to say that! Have you watched the old Martin Luther movie? It’s really good! I did write more of that poem, but it wasn’t much good really…


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