Holidays, Religion, and Spirituality…and More Questions

Bryan and I had another really good session with Reverend Bassford this morning. I mentioned in my last post that we were to have written down religious holidays that were important to us (individually) and that we’d discuss how to celebrate them respectfully in our interfaith home.

Well, we didn’t write them down, but we did both think of them and had a good discussion this morning. My big one was, of course, Christmas. Bryan’s list included Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur, Hanukkah, and Passover. He talked, too about how enjoyable Sukkot was last year (his Dad and Stepmom built a sukkah for the first time last year), and how he enjoyed the big family dinners that his grandparents used to host every Friday for Shabbat.

What we ended up focusing on more this session, though, was religion and spirituality. We talked about how to make sure both families feel equally included in all the various holidays. More than that, we talked about ways we can help to foster an inclusive and open nature regarding our faiths and beliefs and practices for our families. I mentioned how helpful many of the articles at InterfaithFamily.com have been to both of us and she was thrilled that we’ve added yet another resource (in addition to her and Rabbi Charlie) to our “toolkit” for life together.

I’d be interested in comments from other interfaith families and couples of how to make either or both families comfortable with their dual-faith relationships. And in a more broad sense than just celebrating more than one set of holidays, but also in religious, spiritual, and family decisions, and just life in general. Is it easier or harder to do if you choose to set up “house” in one faith vs. both faiths (i.e., deciding to have a Jewish home or a Christian home rather than both)?

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