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More than a Tradition—A Reminder of God’s Love

Halloween 2018 and the opportunity for ministry.

by Ryan Eggenberger

Dressed up as “Fr. Time” for Halloween, Msgr. Todd Lajiness, rector of Sacred Heart Major Seminary, shared his enthusiasm during the seminary’s annual Trick or Treat Outreach night. “Halloween is one of the primary opportunities for us to do community outreach,” said Monsignor Lajiness. “I am amazed and grateful to God that our event gets bigger each year.”

Trick-or-Treating at Sacred Heart continues to be one of the seminary community’s favorite annual events. Months of preparation are involved, a lot of prayer, and a classroom full of candy donated by seminary students, friends, and parish communities across Southeast Michigan.

Halloween 2018 was no exception. On this clear afternoon, thousands of families began lining the street around 4 p.m. for an evening of candy; games; cider and donuts; family time; and prayer ministry. “This is way more than just passing out candy, because we pray with, bless, and get to know people. The Gospel comes to life in a moment like this,” said Monsignor Lajiness. 

Second-year college seminarian for the Archdiocese of Detroit, Dominic Devine, was all smiles as he passed out handfuls of candy to each guest in his line. “I’m surprised again at the amount of people that come,” he said. “I love that the seminary is known for being a place of charity and for being a safe environment for neighborhood families to enjoy time together each year.”

Kevin Yono, a third-year graduate seminarian for the Chaldean Eparchy of St. Thomas, was surprised and moved by the testimony of one guest. “Speaking with and interacting with the kids is great, especially those who come back annually,” said Yono. “One girl just told me she keeps the Holy Cards we pass out each year by sticking them in her bathroom mirror at home. She said that the cards remind her of God’s love every morning.”

Many of the seminarians who are in their first year at Sacred Heart were surprised by the large line that began to form around 4 p.m. for the event.

Shea Kettner, a second-year college seminarian for the Diocese of Lansing, said, “As it’s my first year at Sacred Heart, I’m blown away by the sheer amount of people who are here! Their gratitude for us having them into our home is palpable too. I love meeting people where they are at—the moms, dads, and the kids.”

by Ryan Eggenberger

Ryan Eggenberger

Ryan Eggenberger is a graduate Seminarian for the Archdiocese of Detroit.

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Sacred Heart Major Seminary is a Christ-centered Catholic community of faith and higher learning committed to forming leaders who will proclaim the good news of Christ to the people of our time. As a leading center of the New Evangelization, Sacred Heart serves the needs of the Archdiocese of Detroit and contributes to the mission of the universal Church.