ESSEX-UK-L ArchivesArchiver > ESSEX-UK > 2005-10 > 1130190985
From: "Colleen" <>
Subject: Re: Popularity of 'All Saints' church name
Date: Mon, 24 Oct 2005 22:56:25 +0100
References: <001201c5d81d$647b98c0$0202a8c0@Vaio> <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Thanks, Anne, these links between Christianity and Pagan beliefs and
practices are fascinating.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Anne Peat" <>
> All Saints is the second most popular designation for Christian Churches
> ( after St Mary?) so it's not surprising that there are lots of them in
> any area.
> The dedication covers all the 'little' saints who don't have a special
> But there may be a less 'holy' reason for the popularity.
> When Christianity was introduced, and became the official religion, the
> Church often 'Christianized' pagan places and customs.
> For instance, many early churches are built on top of pagan places of
> worship ( hence the ancient yew trees in churchyards, many of which are
> older than the earliest church on the site)
> And pagan festivals were replaced by Christian festivals.
> The ancient British New Year, Samhain when the spirits of the dead were
> believed to return, was replaced with All Saints, and later All Souls. ( 1
> and 2 November)
> So celebrating All Saints, you could also pay respect to your pagan
> ancestors at the same time.