Local News

Pagans Celebrate A Different Halloween

Posted October 30, 1996 12:00 a.m. EST

— Halloween conjures up many dark images, which is why some Christian church es urge members not to celebrate the holiday. But there is a group which treats halloween as its most important religious holiday.

They call themselves witches and say they do believe in magic, but the Pagans say they do not represent or worship evil. They say myths about them worshipping the devil and sacrificing animals have given them a bad name. For them, according to Alamance County's Pagan High Priestess Diana Rice, Halloween isn't about ghosts and goblins, it's a sacred day set aside for remembering the dead.

Rice, head of a group called Lunatic Fringe, wants to set the record straight. Shedoescall herself a witch, but says she only practicesgoodmagic.

Rice holds rituals in her outdoor temple, complete with a cauldron and an altar.

She plans to hold a ritual to celebrate So-Waine, the day most of us call Halloween. While the setting may seem frightening to some, Rice says the ceremony is not about evil.

Pagans believe in reincarnation, worship multiple gods, goddesses and nature. Rice knows some people are skeptical and even afraid of her beliefs, but she say they just don't understand.