The celebration of Holywins, whose meaning is “holiness triumphs”, is an initiative born in Paris in 2002 with the aim of celebrating All Saints’ Day on October 31. Over time, this Catholic celebration spread to other European countries such as Spain and the rest of the world.
On that day, parishes and Catholic communities come together to celebrate Mass, participate in Eucharistic adoration and prayer meetings, as well as recreational activities to encourage the participation of children, young people and their families.
For example, it is customary to dress up children as their favorite saints and bring them together to talk about these exemplary lives and remember the call to holiness. In addition, games and animation songs are usually made and food and sweets are shared.
While physical participation in the parish community may be limited this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, it is possible to celebrate this date at home.
Here are some ideas to celebrate this feast with your family:
Dress up as your favorite saints
It doesn’t take a big investment to make a costume, but good characterization can be achieved with the help of some fabrics or homemade items.
For example, to dress as Saint Catherine of Siena, all you need is a long white or cream-colored dress representing the habit of the Dominican order and a black cloth in the form of a “toque”, a piece of clothing worn by religious women. used to make their heads. In addition, you can make a wreath of dry branches for your head and carry a cross and a small bouquet of lilies in your hand.
To disguise yourself as Santa Rosa de Lima, you can use the same custom as for Santa Catalina de Siena, just swapping the crown of dry branches for one of red roses.
Dressing up as Saint Juan Diego requires a large white or cream colored blanket or sheet that envelops the body and in the front part can be placed an image of the Virgin of Guadalupe and some red roses at her feet.
To represent Santo Domingo Savio, patron saint of children’s choirs, only brown pants, a green jacket, a white shirt, and a bow tie or “michi” are required. To dress as Saint Ignatius of Loyola and Saint Francis of Assisi, you only need a black robe and a brown robe, respectively.
More costume ideas Here.
Share themed food and sweets
Each celebration is usually accompanied by food, take advantage of this day to cook as a family and prepare desserts that refer to the profession or activity of which a saint is patron, or with characteristic elements of your favorite saint. Then put them on your table and share with your family the story or anecdotes of the chosen saint or saints.
For example, in the case of San Juan Gualberto, patron of parks and forest workers, you could: making cupcakes of chocolate decorated with white icing and small trees made with chocolate or elastic dough. In the case of Santa Rosa de Lima, you could make cupcakes with red rose frosting.
In the case of San Antonio Abad, patron saint of pets, or San Francisco de Asís, patron saint of animals and environmentalists, you could make or buy cookies shaped like animals, leaves, or trees.
Encourage Playful Activities About the Saints
In addition to the prepared desserts, you can fill containers or large cups with candies, each of which has a wrapped paper on which some of the most famous phrases of the saints of your devotion are written. You could also fill cups with candy and place them in a pacifier stick or wooden stick with the image of a saint attached.
If you already have pumpkins in your house, do not waste them, you can draw a star or a cross on them and fill them with the candies that the phrases of your favorite saints have wrapped around them. In this way, frightening faces are avoided and this activity takes on a more Christian meaning.
Later, you could tell the story of some Saints or watch movies of Saints as a family, animated for children, and then ask understanding questions. With those who already know several stories about the saints, you can even play puppet shows. Those who give the correct answer get to take the candies you place.
You can also have the youngest members of your family role-play or perform the story, episode, or anecdote of one of their favorite saints. This activity can be more fun if they have a costume or something that refers to the saint.
In addition, each member can be encouraged to draw their favorite saint or create origami or crafts that represent their patron saint or a characteristic element of him. Afterwards, everyone could explain why they chose it and share their favorite phrase of the saint with the others.
Decorate the altar of your home and pray as a family
Put a family altar in your home first if you don’t have one. This is an excellent space to pray the Rosary as a family, and this devotional practice is better done in community than individually.
Images of saints are often placed on altars for their veneration and can also be very instructive.
Remember that these spaces should be special and encourage remembrance for prayer, take advantage of this special day and decorate it as a family with images of your favorite saints and flowers for the Virgin Mary, natural or made of paper, made according to the origami technique .
Then pray the rosary with the participation of all your family and ask God for the holiness of your family and offer a prayer to the saint or saints of your consecration. Each member could read a mystery from the rosary and at the end everyone could offer songs to Mary.
“Total travelaholic. Subtly charming zombie geek. Friend of animals everywhere. Music buff. Explorer. Tv junkie.”