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Thinking ahead about how to handle this situation- came up last year, and it was ugly. Need some thoughts on how to handle the upcoming holiday season.

My husband & I have been married 17 years, we have two primary school age children. We have a christian home. My husband was raised more "religious" than I was, but we both feel it important to educate the children, and bible study as a family weekly. We have had a happy marriage, and have a like mind on almost everything- little arguing- until this holiday issue came up.

Last year, my husband stated that he no longer wanted our family participating in Halloween, Christmas (no tree, tell the kids there is no Santa), no Easter, because it is pagan. Now please understand that we have celebrated and enjoyed all of these fully up to this point. His reasoning is that he believes the end-times for this earth are upon us- in our lifetime. He is very intelligent, and has always been "aware" of the signs of the end times, but feels that it is to be soon, and wants to make sure our family isn't doing anything to keep us from being saved. He believes that Christmas, the Christmas Tree, Santa, Halloween, and Easter are pagan, and was adamant about not participating in them any longer.

I did not agree at all, and thought it was very confusing and mean to take away these fun traditions from our kids. He begin to spend a lot of time researching the pagan backgrounds of these holidays, and shared a bunch of his research with me. At his request, I watched several of the videos that vividly explain why Santa is Satan, the tree is pagan, Easter was when the babies were sacrificed, and eggs dipped in their blood, etc etc. I countered with my own research, and the fact that many things in our lives (days of the week, wedding rings, wedding ceremonies, etc.) begin as pagan, but now no longer have that meaning. Neither does the Christmas Tree- we do not "bow down" to it, or "worship" it- the symbolism for us has nothing to do with pagan practice or history- in fact I doubt 99% of people are even aware of the pagan background of these celebrations. It doesn't have that meaning for us today. This went on for weeks starting from before Halloween, through the end of the year. We have never argued so much (while the kids were in school- not in front of them), to the point of him screaming at me, which he has never done before.

I believe it is important to present a united front for our kids, but I deeply felt taking away, on short notice, all the happy holiday traditions our kids have enjoyed for years, and were looking forward to was wrong. I fought very hard to keep to keep as much as we could last year.

Halloween is pretty hard to argue for, so that was out- no trick-or-treating, but they did get to dress up for their school's harvest festival, which was mid-Oct. They did not get to do the parade at school, and were almost the only kids who had to sit it out, which made for a few awkward questions from their peers. I don't like them put in a situation where they feel "different". After many hot debates, we put up the Christmas tree several days before Christmas. My husband told the kids there was no Santa- which really upset me- they would have figured it within a few years anyway. He explained to them about the pagan origins, and that he understand more now about that, and why its bad to celebrate these holidays. He asked them if they understood, and of course, being good children who want to please their father, they agreed. In private though, they asked me why it was ok before, but not now, etc. It was hard for them, but they were troopers about it.

I hated that there was this division between us, but I really felt it was wrong, and I told the kids that we had quite a few discussions/arguments about it, with me tying to keep the traditions in place. My youngest said she didn't care about the presents, or the tree, or anything- she was just worried that if we were arguing that we would get divorced. She was crying as she told me that, which hurt my heart. So if your advise is just to have him leave (which believe me, I considered)- keep that in mind.

So now, here we are with the holidays approaching. I imagine we will handle Halloween the same, with doing the harvest festival only. (no pumpkin carving either.) Last year, when my husband agreed for the tree to be up briefly, he said we would not do it the next year- so that is the conflict I'm gearing up for- I still want the tree. Re: Easter, we didn't color Easter eggs, but they did get to do the family meal and eater egg hunt- although as we were headed out the door on Easter, he said he didn't want them to do the egg hunt. We were literally on our way out the door to go do it, so I overruled- that was way to short notice to not do it. I'm sure it will be on the chopping block next Easter though.

Aside from these holidays, our home has been pretty harmonious. Has anyone else dealt with a similar situation? Any advise on how to handle the upcoming holidays? How about my resentment about him taking away the fun for my kids, and for me as the mom of young kids? The holidays are one of the great perks of having kids, and since I do not believe it will harm our salvation, it just makes me sad to have it taken away. Sorry this post was so very long, but it is a little complicated, and I wanted to give as much info up front.
 

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maybe there is a compromise?

Try this maybe?
Celebrate the holidays both religiously and as you have. Attend Easter mass all together, Christmas mass the same. Spend time as a family enforcing the religious reasons behind these great holidays. Read some religious books about the holidays. Explain how santa aka Chris Cringle is a real person who saw suffering at a time that should be joyous so he began giving children and the poor gifts to bring joy to them.

You do know Chris Cringle is a real person, a christian and the one who started the idea of giving gifts during this time of joy.

Here is more compromise. Agree to give gifts of needs not just wants. I remember getting socks, underwear, coats, snow suit and other needs for Christmas and was more than happy to receive these gifts.

Easter is a pagan holiday that worships the goddess ishtar the fertility hence the bunnies and eggs. Again include the tails of the resurrection and find a way to work all the things into the story. Eggs represent new life to honor the risen jesus. The bunnies purity to represent his pure soul.

Hope things like this may help.
 

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You do realize that Christmas, Easter, and Halloween are all pagan celebrations, don't you? They were adopted by the Catholic church to entice people to convert. Maybe your husband is objecting to their pagan origin.

I'm not religious myself, but see no harm in celebrating holidays whatever their origin - it's a matter of putting things in context.
 

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You do realize that Christmas, Easter, and Halloween are all pagan celebrations, don't you? They were adopted by the Catholic church to entice people to convert. Maybe your husband is objecting to their pagan origin.

I'm not religious myself, but see no harm in celebrating holidays whatever their origin - it's a matter of putting things in context.
I see your post is helpful to her or was that directed at me? Either way i would bet you they attend Easter mass, ash Wednesday, Christmas mass. either way at least I've given constructive advice and sorry you didn't like it.
 

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I see these holidays as more of a family/social tradition rather than "pagan" or "christian". If you want to go to church on Easter to celebrate the resurrection, great. Fabulous. What does that have to do with hunting easter eggs? It's just a fun event, like celebrating a birthday or anniversary or even having a weekly family game night. You aren't worshiping some ancient god just because you hang some stockings over your fireplace. Sheesh. People take these things way too seriously IMO.
 

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Since WHEN is CHRISTmas a "pagan" holiday? Christmas is about the celebration of the birth of CHRIST.

And Easter is the celebration of the Resurrection of Christ.


I think I'd be putting my foot down on top of your h's and tell him that if HE doesn't want to celebrate with the rest of the family, he's welcome not to. But if he's going to spoil it for the kids, he's not being very "Christian".

Vega
 

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You aren't worshiping some ancient god just because you hang some stockings over your fireplace. Sheesh. People take these things way too seriously IMO.
Seriously! It seems like more and more people these days are deliberately LOOKING for reasons to be "offended"! :scratchhead:

Vega
 

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He's right... the Christmas tree has Pagan origins. The presents under the tree, however, IMO, are symbolic of the gifts brought to Jesus when he was born. Santa? We have never "done" Santa with our kids. We chose to keep the reason for Christmas as Christ-centered, not Santa-centered.

Easter eggs, Easter baskets, Easter Bunny.... again, we don't "do" that either. Instead, we celebrate the Passover time, and celebrate Christ's death, burial, and resurrection.

Truthfully, kicking the Pagan aspects out, my kids still have plenty of fun on the holidays. But, since my husband was born and raised Jewish, we also incorporate Hanukkah around Christmastime. I guess I don't see a problem with removing those things... Kids still have fun, even without the Pagan stuff.
 

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Do your religuos leaders belive the same as he does? Maybe they can intervene in finding a middle ground. While I respect your beliefs, I will say based on my experience that there's a fine line from keeping true to your faith and becoming a fanatic. Sometimes when we discover new things such as the pegan influence in Christianity it can be overwhelming. I agree with others that compromising would be your best bet.

Without implying anything and with all due respect, I will also mention that you need to watch out for paranoia as sometimes this is how a mental illness can manifest itself. Also to Make sure to check over your finances as many people have poured their life savings and all their assets to "end of day" campaigning.
 

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I see your post is helpful to her or was that directed at me? Either way i would bet you they attend Easter mass, ash Wednesday, Christmas mass. either way at least I've given constructive advice and sorry you didn't like it.
Isn't that only Catholic? My church doesn't do masses. And we don't do anything with ash Wednesday, nor Lent. :scratchhead:
 

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I see your post is helpful to her or was that directed at me? Either way i would bet you they attend Easter mass, ash Wednesday, Christmas mass. either way at least I've given constructive advice and sorry you didn't like it.
I thought your advice was very good. I hadn't seen your post when I wrote mine. Just because we strongly disagree on some issues does not mean we will not agree on others.
 
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Since WHEN is CHRISTmas a "pagan" holiday? Christmas is about the celebration of the birth of CHRIST.

And Easter is the celebration of the Resurrection of Christ.


I think I'd be putting my foot down on top of your h's and tell him that if HE doesn't want to celebrate with the rest of the family, he's welcome not to. But if he's going to spoil it for the kids, he's not being very "Christian".

Vega
This seems to be a hot trend right now. My wife is very religious (I am not) and she contemplated the idea for awhile. I do know a number of families from within her social circle that have stopped celebrating those holidays.

I believe the reasoning was that these holidays do not actually fall on the exact days that Christ was born and had risen from the dead. The calendar days we celebrate Christmas and Easter are pagan in nature (not biblical) and are associated with pagan rituals and traditions.

You don't want me to write what I was thinking when my wife started suggesting this.
 

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And why is he making all the rules? Yea.

All too reminiscent of my friend's husband in that crazy a22 cult.
 

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This seems to be a hot trend right now. My wife is very religious (I am not) and she contemplated the idea for awhile. I do know a number of families from within her social circle that have stopped celebrating those holidays.

I believe the reasoning was that these holidays do not actually fall on the exact days that Christ was born and had risen from the dead. The calendar days we celebrate Christmas and Easter are pagan in nature (not biblical) and are associated with pagan rituals and traditions.

You don't want me to write what I was thinking when my wife started suggesting this.
Yes, that is completely accurate for Christmas, but only half true for Easter. Most often, from what I have noticed, the TIME for Easter usually coincides with Passover in the Jewish calendar. It's only been a few times that I have noticed a difference. Anyway, I know that during those years when it does, in fact, coincide with the Jewish calendar/Passover, then it IS correct. So, the date, itself, may not be exact, but the time of year is, in fact, right.
 

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A friend of mine had a husband who did something similar.

He was in a weird cult.

This is way too much for me to deal with. All these things are fun. I'd have to ask my husband and his wackadoo ideas to leave.
And why is he making all the rules? Yea.

All too reminiscent of my friend's husband in that crazy a22 cult.
I know these things SEEM similar to what your friend went through, btu there ARE legitimate churches whose members DO feel this way about the holidays. And, they ahve felt this way all along. I think it would be better to offer advice on this, maybe find a possible compromise they could work with, if there is one, rather than write her husband off as insane. I suppose next, you will tell me that I am insane because I chose to tell my children the truth about who "Santa" was, from the beginning, and that "Santa" isn't the one who gives them gifts? And I'm also insane for telling my children there is no tooth fairy, nor Easter bunny, etc?

Honestly, just the little bit the OP posted sounds quite a bit like what my church has taught for many years. I won't speak for certain on that, though, because she never said what the denomination is. Still, I believe it is ridiculous to write him off as crazy or insane, just because his beliefs don't mesh with your own....and because of what your friend went through.
 

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I think part of what the OP is objecting to is the fact that her husband is changing the rules. If they had agreed to no Santa, Easter Bunny, etc before the kids were born, that's fine. But he has been fine with them all along and now is suddenly and at the last minute telling the whole family to stop participating in this activities. I can imagine that is pretty confusing and upsetting for the kids.
 

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I think part of what the OP is objecting to is the fact that her husband is changing the rules. If they had agreed to no Santa, Easter Bunny, etc before the kids were born, that's fine. But he has been fine with them all along and now is suddenly and at the last minute telling the whole family to stop participating in this activities. I can imagine that is pretty confusing and upsetting for the kids.
That was exactly why i suggested making them religious and celebratory. Take the time to explain the REAL meaning of the holiday or at least it's good intentions.
 

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You do realize that Christmas, Easter, and Halloween are all pagan celebrations, don't you? They were adopted by the Catholic church to entice people to convert. Maybe your husband is objecting to their pagan origin.

I'm not religious myself, but see no harm in celebrating holidays whatever their origin - it's a matter of putting things in context.
It's meaningless that they were pagan holidays. The extant pagan aspects of them aren't of any religious value, they're simply cultural. There's no one, no fringe cults that worship the easter bunny, Santa Claus or anything else of the like.
 

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That's pretty cruel to the kids actually. I can see if he started this before they were born. I also assume he celebrated all holidays as a child and it was never taken away from him.

I find this very controlling. This will really effect the kids. Especially when they are asked at school by their peers what they got for Christmas. Halloween is acceptable to leave out. Not that it's a "pegan" event. Rather that the kids don't need all that candy.

For Christmas and Easter we do give the kids gifts and celebrate the Christian way.

I don't believe the end times are near. It is impossible to predict something like this. We are still alive from last December when it was all over the TV that Earth was ending or even the Y2k crap, when the year 2,000 hit.

Anyway, this wouldn't fly with me. I wouldn't intentionally take something away from my kids, especially since they look forward to it and there is no harm in it at all.
 
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