Thursday, December 24, 2009

Setting the Record Straight

Some responses to questions and comments non-Christian people tend to get this time of year (more than you think!).

"Merry Christmas!" "Merry Christmas!" I accept and respond to this salutation in the spirit it was intended, as a tiding of good cheer. No need to dampen any one's enthusiasm.

"Don't you feel like you are missing out?" Do you feel like you are missing out on Rosh Hashana or Ramadan?

"Don't you celebrate Christmas even a little bit?" Again, no. We don't put up lights or a Christmas tree, we don't give our kids Christmas gifts. We might attend a friend's Christmas party or send out holiday cards and we participate in gift exchanges, etc., but we don't celebrate Christmas.

"That will change when your kids get bigger." No, it won't. You don't celebrate holidays to accommodate your children or fit in. Christmas is not our holiday. My kids already know they are Jewish and while I am sure there will be times where they will be "Christmas-curious," they love and value our traditions and celebrations and are proud to be Jewish.

"But I know Jewish people that celebrate Christmas." Just because they do, doesn't mean that every Jewish person does or should.

"But Christmas isn't even really a religious holiday anymore." It doesn't really matter what the holiday is intended to represent or has evolved to represent, it still isn't my holiday.

"What are you going to do on Christmas Day?" Typically? Pretty much nothing. This year we are going to an event at a local Jewish Community Center. They have activities (bounce houses, art projects, etc.) set up for the kids so we all don't go stir crazy.

Happy holidays everyone! No matter what you do or do not celebrate - I hope you get to sleep late.


Josh said...

Bravo! This is awesome!

Billie said...

I know Christians that don't celebrate Christmas because of what it has evolved to. I am not sure what the big deal is about not celebrating Christmas - whatever the reason!

Happy Holidays?

FC Mom said...

Loved this post, and just blogged about it at FC Mom. As usual your opinions are straight-up no BS. I love that about you. And I always appreciate being given a heads up on dumb questions before I, God forbid, ask them myself! I hate being "that person" who asks the typical clueless question.

I think Christmas brings out a weird side of people- they get giddy, and act like fools. I can't believe someone would smugly tell you that they're SURE you'll start celebrating Christmas when your kids are older because SURELY they'll start begging you to... people can be such smartypants.

irenesbooks said...


(a gentile)