Based on a Feb 3, 2002 LA Times article Peanuts: “Long Before ‘South Park'” “Linus a thumb-sucking blanket-carrying junior Christian mystic with a belief in a mysterious entity called the “Great Pumpkin” who ostensibly rises over random pumpkin patches each Halloween to dispense gifts to sincere children the world over.”

The original LA Times article: http://articles.latimes.com/2002/feb/03/books/bk-bresnick3