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Anne Billings wrote:

Hi, guys —

My daughter is marrying a Jewish man and converting to Judaism. She still wants to celebrate Christmas with us and I am not sure how I feel about that.

I don't want our beliefs to come between us but I don't think she should [celebrate/observe] Christmas if she doesn't believe Jesus Christ is Our Savior.

  • Does anyone else have this problem and any suggestions for the situation I am in?

Anne Billings

  { Should my daughter observe Christmas if she is marrying a Jewish man and converting to Judaism? }

John replied:

Hi Anne,

I would say it's always best to keep the lines of communications open.

There is nothing wrong with a Jewish person, or anyone for that matter, celebrating Christmas so there is absolutely nothing wrong with a former Christian who converted to Judaism celebrating Christmas with her family.

Obviously don't try to preach to her but this is also an opportunity for her husband to be exposed to, at least, the traditions of Christmas. If he asks questions, answer them but avoid debates.

Remember we are called to be witnesses:

  1. first with lives, and
  2. then by our love.

In my opinion it would be a bad witness to exclude her and cause resentments. That might actually cause your beliefs and differences in beliefs to come between her. For that reason, treat her the way you've always treated her.

  • If she wants to come to Mass alone with you or bring her husband, let them come.
  • If all they want to do is visit and have dinner that's fine. Do whatever they are comfortable doing and if you've exchanged gifts in the past, continue to do so and include her husband so he's not left out.
  • If you're cooking dinner, ask if they observe the Jewish dietary laws so you can have something there which they can be at peace eating.

Just love them.

  • Who knows?

Your witness may bring her back and her husband along with her.

Warmly, Blessed Advent, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,

John DiMascio

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