OK, what is the deal on celebrating birthdays? Have they changed the rules?
I have been away from the meetings for quite a few years, but have family who are still involved. My immediate family member who is still a witness, maybe still an elder, has taken to joining the family of non-witnesses with his witness family on father's day, and more recently wishing another family member Happy Birthday and planning to attend the gathering for dinner. Still feeling the deep scars from ceasing this practice myself in the early 70's (dad disowned me, mother accused me of not loving them) when I became a dub, I am trying not to start boiling inside if they have now "changed" the rules again. Anyone got the scoop?
....still recovering from the lie
The rules haven't changed. JW's still don't celebrate birthdays, or wish anyone a 'happy birthday'. There's no good reason for it. But they dislike anything that could take someone's attention away from the Society. Why buy people presents when you can donate to the society?
In my opinion the reason they don't celebrate birthdays and don't do many other things is to maintain a "them" and "us" mentality. Those bad people celebrate birthdays, or whatever it is, and we good people don't.
So there were a couple of deaths involved with 2 birthday celebrations in the Bible. That's a weak reason.
If there has been a change, I would love to know. My dad (still very much a JW) is flying to town for a visit, coincidentally at the same time as my daughter's birthday. To date, I've tried to hide anything they frown on from their sight to preserve our relationship and normally that's easy living so far away. Her birthday party is actually the weekend before he gets there. But he'll be visiting on the actual birthday. Even though she's too young to know what day it is, it'd be great if I could be out in the open with saying "Happy Birthday" to my daughter on her birthday.
just do it jws cast off your fear!!! this is your DAUGHTER were talking about!
As far as the WTS is concerned, birthdays and holidays are still "unscriptural and worldly." Which means a big fat NO!!!
That being said, I've noticed in the recent past, certain faithful, hardcore believers (including my Mother-in-law) surreptitiously "acknowledging" the birthdays of her grandchildren and her bosses' children by taking them for a meal, or buying a present to be given the day before, or day after. This has been going on for two years. I have reason to believe some of her friends operate this way too. I suspect that the society will take no action against these almost birthday celebrators, because they know that it's a small matter that is a great sticking point to family who feel like jerks for not recognizing the special dates in family and friends' lives.
Which means for us a great big fat "HUH???"
My JW mother would be heartbroken if I forgot her birthday (she NEVER forgets mine), or if I failed to wish her a Happy Mother's Day.
When we were strict JW's, she would call me on Mother's Day and ask if I remembered what day it was. I usually said something flippant about how we don't celebrate Mother's Day and she would say, "well, I am your Mother after all". She wanted that recognition, so now I give it to her.
my mom always calls me on my birthday....but she didn't call for my daughters 1 yr birthday, which really made me angry.....i don't know if that is logical or not....I know she doesn't celebrate....i'm not sure if she even realizes that my family does now.....come to think of it....I have no idea what my parents birthdays are......pathetic. I guess thats a sign that I grew up in "the truth"
The non-celebration of birthdays hasn't changed. However, many of us doubtful members have indeed changed and no longer observe many of their silly/man-made rules such as this one.
Nothing has changed, except perhaps that "The love of the greater number has cooled off". This quote is from the brochure "Jehovah's Witnesses and Education" 2002.
edp. 15 The Challenge of Religious Diversity ***
Misunderstandings may even arise with celebrations that appear to have few, if any, religious connections. This is true of birthdays, celebrated in many schools. Although Jehovah?s Witnesses respect the right of others to celebrate birthdays, you are no doubt well aware that they choose not to share in such celebrations.