JW alternatives to holidays

by YellowLab 17 Replies latest jw experiences

  • seeking_truth

    I don't know if this means so much to anyone but I grew up with my family being members of the Kingdom Hall. SO celebrating holidays was a no-no and of course any child feels isolated when not attending classroom parties or even holidays, that is if the reasonings aren't explained real well.

    Holidays are rooted in pagan beliefs and anyone can see that. Halloween being the day where you dress up to ward off the ghosts and goblins that get the 31st to roam around. If you ask yourself anything, do you want your child participating in something that deals with the devil however direct or indirect it may be? One little boy told my 11 year old that since she didn't celebrate halloween that she didn't believe in God. Crazy. Another holiday is Christmas. Which to me if it was a day for celebrating Christ's birth, where is it stated in the bible that december was the month or even the date pointed out to be considered holy? Why do people feel the joy and love on his birth-day but yet give "others" gifts? To me if true christains was to honor, not celebrate, his birth it would be in a spiritual manner. Yet it isn't his birth that meant the most but the fact he died for our sins which is not so nationally observed.

  • Debz

    We never got presents in lieu of Xmas or other hols.....my parents were very stingy with money so for them it meant they could save more money! I spose the idea being that we could go on holidays BUT as soon as I left school and earned my own money I was excluded from these too. I have always over compensated for my own kids and spend tons on them each holiday - mainly coz they don`t get extended family gifts....

  • NeonMadman
    Holidays are rooted in pagan beliefs and anyone can see that.

    Many of them are, yes. Which doesn't explain why JW's are willing to accept so many other customs that have pagan roots (wedding rings, anniversaries, flowers at funerals, etc.). Nor does it explain why they won't celebrate completely non-religious holidays like Mother's Day, Thanksgiving and so on.

    Besides, why would the fact that some of the customs (or even the date) associated with a certain holiday necessarily mean that Christians shouldn't celebrate them, if they have now come to have a Christian meaning? The Bible does not command us to avoid anything that may have a history in paganism; even meats from animals that had been sacrificed to idols was acceptable as food for Christians, if they ate it with a clear conscience.

    Another holiday is Christmas. Which to me if it was a day for celebrating Christ's birth, where is it stated in the bible that december was the month or even the date pointed out to be considered holy?

    It isn't. So what? Where is it stated in the Bible that a holiday has to be specifically authorized in the Bible for Christians to be able to celebrate it? No one (well, except perhaps the Catholic Chruch) is saying that Christians are required to observe Christmas. It's a matter of conscience. If a Christian can celebrate Christmas in a way that honors Christ (which does not necessarily exclude the secular aspects of the holiday), why should he be prohibited from doing so? Such a prohibition would not be supported by scripture - quite the contrary! As Paul wrote in Romans 14:4-8...

    Who are you to judge someone else's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. He who regards one day as special, does so to the Lord. He who eats meat, eats to the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who abstains, does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives to himself alone and none of us dies to himself alone. If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

    In the light of that text, I would say that it is the one who attempts to impose regulations upon another prohibiting the celebration of certain days who is sinning, not the one who does the celebrating.

  • mouthy

    Oh here I go feeling lousy again.... Yes I had "family day"in Aug.. I would hide all their gifts& they had to search for them- no I had no substitute for all the other "Pagan " ? holidays- I was a real JW did what "god" told me to do- even with the beatings I took.So because my kids are now dead.... You started something again...Oh poo why did I answer this thread...( feeling sorry for my self & those I "tricked")

  • waiting


    I know what you mean - parents seemed "damned if you do - damned if you don't." My kids DID get gifts other times of the year - and I made sure to wrap as many as I could!. They never had a shortage of toys, tv's, clothes, etc.

    What they never got (neither did I, btw) - are the traditions, the family get-togethers, the feel, the smell, the sense of memories being made, hopefully good memories.

    JW's have no traditions. And that's a big part of holidays. Many of us can't remember specific gifts we received every year........but we can remember who was at the dinner, who got drunk, or sang, whatever. We tend to remember people in events for a very long time.

    Of course, I can still remember the Tinkerbell doll I got when I was 5 - but not that specific Christmas event.

    One thing worth remembering..........not all families that celebrate holidays are happy. God-awful things are done to kids (and adults) by seriously dysfunctional people during holidays.

    Just because you missed them - doesn't necessarily mean you missed a Good Time. And definitely doesn't mean you can't enjoy them NOW.

    Happy Valentine's Day!

  • jws

    Our parents were pretty faithful to the "getting us things any time of the year" thing - within their means. My dad supported the family and money was OK, but not abundant.

    We had family dinners on Thanksgiving several times (back when we had Friday night meetings). It was a day everyone had off work and the turkeys were usually on sale. We were told it wasn't a Thanksgiving dinner, but aside from that, it was everything but. I think when the cong. changed meeting night to Thursdays, we had it either on the weekend or on Wednesday night so you could stay up a little late.

  • Ravyn

    my family were 'real' Jws too, my father was anointed and an elder. but he explained to us, the rules are for the weak ones. this was the general attitude of the Brooklyn crowd in the 1960's-70's. so as far as being good little witnesses--there were always double and triple standards with in the Borg. don't feel bad about anything you might have done or not done. the insider's always had a different set of rules---we used to joke about it and call it the California rule book for the R&F who happened to be far enough away from Brooklyn to know what was going on.(and when I say 'we' I mean my father's crowd---Jaracsz, Henschel, Franz, among others.)


  • SheilaM

    On birthdays for my kids I slowly started with acknowleging the day by looking through their baby book and taking them somewhere. Then I started with a small gift.

    Our biggest celebration was our anniversary, it was just that "OUR" we had a cake for all of us and the kids got tons of toys.

    I also wrapped anything I could get away with and bought the kids stuff all year round. Anthony still is attached to Toys r us LOL

    Edited by - SheilaM on 11 February 2003 17:47:34

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