Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory/My Faith/The Catholic Church/Theology Using a Ouija Board… Literally the Dumbest Thing you Could do This Halloween by Ryan McQuade Anyone else already getting excited for Halloween? I mean, what’s not to love about a holiday with plenty of scary movies and a chance to show off your creative skills with a sweet costume? Plus, it’s the one time of year you can unapologetically purchase several jumbo bags of chocolate without any judgement. via GIPHY There are plenty of fun things to do to get in the Halloween spirit, but there is one thing we need to talk about – one thing we need to avoid – because some of y’all are out there are straight up inviting evil into your lives. Of course, I’m talking about Ouija Boards. Ouija boards claim to help you contact people who have died by asking the wooden board a question and watching the pieces spell out an answer. This might sound like innocent fun, but here’s why you should think twice about phoning a friend on the other side this Halloween: Ouja Boards are Sinful The Church considers Ouija boards to be a form of divination. Divination is knowing and declaring future events or hidden things by means of communication with occult forces. Ouija boards are sinful and dangerous. When we use them to access unknown knowledge, we refuse to place our trust in the providence of God and, instead, place it in demonic spirits. via GIPHY Whether you Believe it or not Even if you don’t believe you’re communicating with demons, that does not affect the fact that you’re opening yourself up to evil — whether you like it or not –when you participate in any sort of divination. The Catechism clearly states, “All forms of divination are to be rejected… Consulting horoscopes, astrology, palm reading, interpretation of omens and lots, the phenomena of clairvoyance, and recourse to mediums all conceal a desire for power over time, history, and, in the last analysis, other human beings, as well as a wish to conciliate hidden powers. They contradict the honor, respect, and loving fear that we owe to God alone” (CCC 2116). I know what you might be saying, “Ouija boards are harmless. How am I going to communicate with demons if I don’t even believe they’re there? For goodness sake, they sell Ouija Boards in the toy aisle at Target. How bad can they really be?” Not Worth the Risk To that I would say, “WHY EVEN RISK IT!?” If there’s any chance whatsoever that evil spirits (whose mission in life is to separate you from God’s and His perfect love, BTW) could creep their way into your life via a ouija board, isn’t it only logical to stay far, far away from it? Giving an evil spirit access to your life isn’t going to be the fun and games Hasbro promises. Evil is real and it will affect your life if you give it any power to, and I know you don’t need that in your life right now! Think of it this way: when you go into a Catholic church maybe you’ve noticed a golden box in there. That’s what we call a tabernacle and inside the tabernacle is the Body of Christ in the form of bread; what we Catholics call the Eucharist. Whether you believe that’s Him or not does not change the truth that it is. In the same way, whether or not you believe evil spirits can be contacted through divination does not change the fact that they can. It doesn’t matter if you genuflect before a tabernacle or not (although you should out of respect). Jesus is still there. We believe that simply being in the presence of Christ you are in the presence of His grace — graces that will give you peace, help you to avoid sin, and graces that enable you to be a holy person. These graces do not depend on whether you believe Jesus is there or not. Chatting with Demons Isn’t Really Fun In a similar way, demons bring defiance, oppression, and despair. When we willingly put ourselves in their presence we also invite these problems. Demons are real, whether you believe in them or not, and they have one desire: to rebel against God’s plan by leading the children of God astray and destroying them. Not exactly an ideal BFF. But seriously though, demons are not to be messed with. So, promise me that you’ll stay away from those little demon walkie talkies and let Satan know this Halloween… via GIPHY *If you have used a Ouija Board before, there is no need to freak out! You’re not possessed just because you played with one. Ouija Boards are dangerous, but because of Jesus’ victory over Satan, we have no need to fear evil. The only power that the Devil has is the power we give him. Go to confession and confess that you have used a Ouija Board, and let Jesus claim victory over your life!