Happy Holidays

I was visiting with my parents recently, and my mom started ranting (it’s clearly a family trait) about people saying “Happy holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas.” I understand her point, but I don’t completely agree.

I have no problem with people saying “Happy holidays.” I use that phrase myself to include Christmas, New Year’s, and, if it’s early enough in the season, Thanksgiving. I use it in situations where I know I’m addressing people of varied faiths—not because I’m ashamed of Christmas but because I want to respect and include them. My website is one of those situations. I make it clear that my family and I celebrate Christmas. I’m certainly not ashamed of my faith. I do realize, though, that I have customers and frequent website visitors who are Jewish or claim no faith. I know that one particular customer celebrates Winter Solstice. Some of those customers have expressed gratitude that I include them and don’t focus solely on Christmas during this time of year. I believe that this is part of what I’m called to do in loving all of those around me. Though, that may not be the way you are called to express God’s love to others.

I do have a problem with companies that set policy so that their employees will be reprimanded or punished for saying, “Merry Christmas.” That becomes an issue of freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

So, I wish you a merry Christmas and happy holidays!

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