The Headless Bishop (and other Halloween costumes that work for All Saints Day)

We have a pretty good record of getting cast out of every Catholic community we stumble into. This is good news, because it means we never have to make costumes for All Saints Day (we do have fun making Halloween costumes, though).

But how about you? Did you suddenly realize that, in a fit of good Catholic momming, you promised to whip up costumes for both days? I’m here to save your bacon. These costumes are suitably edifying for any church-sponsored party, but edgy enough to earn you all the Mary Janes and Raisinets you can eat on October 31.

Your most obvious twofer choice is martyrs. Grab whatever weapon catches your fancy in the Halloween aisle, and you’re guaranteed to find some Catholic somewhere who was killed with it. We’re just that popular! Buy two tubes of blood, one for the gorefest and one for pious reenactments, and you’re set.

Hilarious on October 31

inspirational just a day later:


Everybody loves a good sight gag:

(instructional video here)

especially when it’s Biblically sound:

And finally, you can terrify the normals with this fantastic cephalophoric illusion:

(instructional video here)

Or, well, terrify the normals with something from the more obscure annals of martyologies.

(Not recommended: St. Agatha)

But there are non-bloody saints, too, and even some adorable sidekicks. You wear a ratty bathrobe and skip showering for a week or two, and you can pass as either a civic-minded individual tirelessly lobbying for societal and legal acceptance of an all-natural homeopathic remedies

(credit Todd Huffman via Flickr; Creative Commons)

or St. Francis, whatever

And who’s this tagging along behind you?


Awww, it’s da widdle wolf of Gubbio! Or a werewolf, take your pick.

Who doesn’t appreciate the time, effort, expense, and attention to detail that goes into a great mummy costume?

(Credit: Allen Lew via Flickr; Creative Commons)

Replace that sinister moan and lumbering gait with a fervent gleam in the eye and a pleasant, un-decompopsed scent, and you become, ovulously, Lazarus:

Here’s an idea which clearly marks you as one of those people who may be a little bit too enthusiastic about Halloween for someone your age:

(instructional video here)

But wait! With a few tweaks done in a sensitive and reverent way, you could easily be St. Christopher.

But don’t tell anyone it was my idea.

In closing, here is a joke I will keep telling until someone else thinks it’s funny. You can buy a Dobby mask, and BOOM, Curé of Ars.

What’s that you say? What are my kids going to be this year, if I’m so smart? I’ll give you a hint: So far I’ve sewed two furry leg warmers together, hemmed a black cloak, spray painted a few acorns gold, and bought some tulle that was on sale, and also kind of a lot of fake teeth. That’s right: We’re going, en masse, as the domestic church, and I just dare you to get in our way.

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9 thoughts on “The Headless Bishop (and other Halloween costumes that work for All Saints Day)”

  1. Did you see the “Trump deporting Mexicans” costume on Instagram? My kid Xave really, really wanted that one. He’s the perfect shade of brown for it too.

    I sold out and went to the Spirit Store. –No Trump there, so Xave went for the yellow crash dummy instead. I tried to bribe Charlotte with money if she would wear her Summer Solstice costume because it’s GORGEOUS. My sister spent an hour embroidering it with glittery butterflies, flowers, jewels and ribbons. Charlotte could see that the Spirit store was crap. I threatened to wear her Wood Fairy costume, but she didn’t budge an inch. We ended up ordering her a pirate monstrosity off of Amazon. I decided to come through on my threat, cutting her fairy costume down the back, and making it into a Wood Fairy skirt. I bought a LOTR fairy crown, big green and gold wings, a green tank top and some lime green fishnets. I modeled my new Fairy skirt for her but she just gave me the thumbs up. My lesson in female rivalry, manipulation and pettiness fell flat on it’s fairy face. To top it off, I was disappointed, knowing she wouldn’t have the coolest, most envy-worthy costume in her class. Good Lord, who am I? –Someone who needed an extra serving(s) of Chardonnay that evening to cope with it all.

    I’ve settled for never being perfectly normal in any Catholic community, but we’re in pretty good company here at our new/old parish. Eccentric people are more interesting. Our pastor threatened to quit the priesthood if they moved him. Haha,God love him –he won. I’m told that half the parish left when he pulled that stunt. I just want to see what he does next. He wept when describing the bravery of people who risked their lives at the shooting in Las Vegas, and then fessed up to storming out of a priest meeting, basically calling them a bunch of dysfunctional weenies –all in one single sermon. At least he admitted he had failed by losing his temper, and promised to be better.

  2. A long multicolored scarf can work for Doctor Who or Bl. Stanley Rother. All ya gotta do is ditch the trench coat for the all saints day party.

    1. Add some gore to the head (Bl. Stanley was marytred in Guatemala in the 80s by being shot in the head), and you’re all set.

  3. I’m so glad we’re not the only family that becomes outcasts in Catholic communities. We’re either not Catholic enough (only four kids) or too Catholic in other ways, or too secular because our kids know their superheroes.

    1. I’m still enough of a newbie (only been hitched 3 years and the oldest kid isn’t old enough to participate in anything yet) not to have formally been outcast, but my Mom (9 of us kids, still has several at home) hates Catholic mom groups for that reason. No wiggle room if you don’t fit the mold in many of them.

      1. When we had one kid, and were attending a weekly rosary/lunch/playtime for the kids, I should have been alerted when the leader of the group “kindly” introduced me to another mom, by saying, “This is B! You’ll have a lot in common. *She* only has one kid, too!” and when it was obvious I was expecting my second (my first was about 3 1/2) more than one mom swooped down on me and whispered, “We were ALL PRAYING FOR YOU!” Ugh. I mean, thanks? I didn’t really ask for prayers. They had no way of knowing my personal circumstances. And since I wasn’t really into Nourishing Traditions, or grinding my own wheat, I didn’t fit in because everybody there was dying to do that since the woman who ran the group did that, had a mini-farm on five acres, and goats.

        But then go to what we kind of call the “Barn” churches (the modern ones that have no art, save for seventies-style reliefs of the Stations, and sometimes no kneelers) and we get a side eye for having four kids now. Four! It’s like we were fruitful and multiplied, how very dare we.

        1. Lol, someone needs to make a ‘Mean Girls’ parody.

          I’ve heard scouting parents are a decent bunch. Little more diverse.

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