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> How Do You Deal, with a dual faith home?
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oldraven 
Posted: 23-Mar-2004, 02:22 PM
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ZodiacHazel

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Ange and I are preparing now for our wedding in August, and also planning a family very soon after. I'm a Christian and she's a Pagan. Two very different worlds and faiths, and ones that sometimes clash.

I'm wondering if any of you are in a dual faith home, or know others who are, and how do you deal with it? How would you raise your children? How would you manage to keep an open mind?


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birddog20002001 
Posted: 23-Mar-2004, 04:27 PM
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ZodiacRowan

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there is an old saying that the children take the fathers name and the mothers religion. Me i'm agnostic and my wife is buddist.


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Elspeth 
Posted: 24-Mar-2004, 06:39 AM
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Our home wasn't quite so diverse. I have always been a very active Protestant and my husband a C&E Catholic. So we still had the fundamental belief in Christ in common. It was more a matter of committment.

All I can say is that for most, when you start raising children this issue becomes more important.

My husband rarely makes the effort to attend church with us and it is a strain. I want my husband to believe in the same fundamental things as do I. That is one of my pre-requisites in a life partner. But that is for everyone to descide.

If you and Ange don't share beliefs, then you will need to find your own peace with that. Many do. The Bible says to not yoke yourself with a non-Christian. Not that it is forbidden, but because it does make the marriage and holding onto your own faith more difficult.

I think it is very wise of you to be thinking of it and discussing ways to overcome your differences now before you actually have children and it becomes more emotional.





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andylucy 
Posted: 24-Mar-2004, 06:47 AM
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Not actually having experience in this, I don't really feel qualified for rendering an opinion (but when has that ever stopped me before? biggrin.gif ).

I agree with Elspeth. It is wise that you are considering this issue now, rather than after you are married, as so many people do. To come to terms with it now would save much pain and heartache later.

And it does tend to get more acute when there are children involved.

QUOTE
My husband rarely makes the effort to attend church with us


Funny, it is my wife that only goes to church on Sundays. It is me that "...practically lives at St. Edwards. You really wanted to be a priest, didn't you? Why do you and Sean have to go to Mass today? It is Wednesday, for crying out loud!" We believe the same thing, but there are still problems. wink.gif

Just my tuppence.

Andy


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Just my tuppence.

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maisky 
Posted: 24-Mar-2004, 09:00 AM
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I have a number of friends who deal with this issue, and it doesn't just go away after marriage. I don't have this issue myself, because my wife and I are both strongly practicing Buddhists. The shared religion makes the marriage MUCH stronger.


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RavenWing 
Posted: 24-Mar-2004, 09:03 AM
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There's always Unitarian universalism. smile.gif


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RavenWing 
Posted: 24-Mar-2004, 09:08 AM
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Anyway, My hubby and I are not of the same faith, although there are similarities. We both believe that everyone spiritual path will not always be the same, so we have decided to bring up our children (if we have any) in a way where they are free to decide their spiritual path. We will introduce them to many different religions, and help them pursue any they are interested in.
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oldraven 
Posted: 24-Mar-2004, 10:35 AM
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I think the best way to do it would be simply to raise the kids as children, and not Christians/Pagans. To teach them what we believe personaly. Teach them about faith. Angela believes in certain Christian ideals, and was confirmed, (with the extra Mary middle name and everything laugh.gif ), Roman Catholic as a child. She claims to believe in Angels, and can't deny the fact of the crucifiction, though she's not sold on God himself, and that Jesus was the son of God.

She's never been an extremely spiritual soul. She never attended church, (though she has gone to my church with me once or twice), nor does she practice her religion. I've seen her do a little spell from one of her paperbacks maybe twice in the past four years. It seems to me that she became pagan when 'everybody was doing it'. You know, the mid 90's.

Now, I'm not trying to discredit her faith, I'm just not convinced that she really is a member of any particular religion. It's almost like she's the opposite of an agnostic without commiting to any one in particular. tongue.gif It's almost like, she's a wiccan so she can say she's a wiccan when people are having that 'what religion are you' conversation.

Durring the first year together we had a huge clashing over all this. I was solid as a rock and just as thick headed about non christian religion. I used to make her hide her books when my parents would visit. It was bad enough I was living with her, I don't think they could have handled that truth. I ended up nearly in tears trying to explain to her why I couldn't accept her not being Christian. You all know why. To us it's like watching the one you love slowly drown. You know in your heart what the end result will be, but you just can't stop it.

And then I went down that dark path many Christians take. It got to the Hell part. She never acted the same to me again. It's like I had personaly condemned her.

BUT ...... after some events and soul searching, I've come to the conclusion that we, as Christians, do NOT have the authority to tell any living soul if they will end up in Heaven or Hell. I'm not the judge, and no one on this earth is. This has been the major reason for my separation from doctrine. It seems every church uses the Hell scare tactic, and that's just not part of Christs word. He judged and condemned NO ONE, and if I'm to be like him, I have to stop doing that myself.

I guess I'll teach the kids Christianity, as an option, my truth, and if she feels strongly enough about it, she'll teach them her beliefs in the same manner.
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andylucy 
Posted: 25-Mar-2004, 03:07 AM
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QUOTE
I've come to the conclusion that we, as Christians, do NOT have the authority to tell any living soul if they will end up in Heaven or Hell.


I agree with you, 100%, that we as Christians have no authority to tell any living soul that they are going to hell, or to heaven, for that matter. That's just not within our purview.

QUOTE
It seems every church uses the Hell scare tactic, and that's just not part of Christs word.


As I said in another topic, the thing that turned me off about the denomination I left was that preachers stood in the pulpit and yelled at me, telling me that I was a miserable sinner and going to hell. However, it does need to be mentioned, in some manner, because hell is a possibility for all. And that is how it should be phrased, IMHO. Christ preached eternal punishment in an everlasting fire, so hell is a real possibility, and it isn't something that anyone should forget.

Best of luck. It is a tough situation, and I'll be praying for you both.

Just my tuppence.

Andy
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oldraven 
Posted: 25-Mar-2004, 10:32 AM
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ZodiacHazel

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We actually had a big talk about this last night, and by the looks of it, her beliefs are quite similar to Ravenwing's. She believes in God, Christ, and the Holy Ghost. She believes Christ sacrificed his life to wipe our sins clean, and more importantly believes it worked. tongue.gif

These are things I never knew, until last night. After that fight two and a half years ago, we just avoided the topic alltogether, out of fear that it would destroy what we had together. But this forum gave me the courage to confront the issue, and I'm glad I did.

She also believes in the Pagan goddesses, which is quite contradictory, but that really doesn't matter. As long as I can teach my children the truth about the holy trinity without having to say, 'but you're mum doesn't follow all that', I'm a happy camper. She also believes in reincarnation, and if you were a bad person on this earth, you'll come back as a fly or something. Karma. Sort of Buddist as well. But, Heaven is also in there. I don't know exactly how Heaven and reincarnation can coincide, but that's part of her journey to sort out.

I have encouraged her to start reading. Not just the Bible, but any and all religious texts of any form she finds interesting. I think I should do the same.
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RavenWing 
Posted: 25-Mar-2004, 10:46 AM
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I don;t think believing in the goddess is contradictory at all. She shows up in most religions. You see her as Mary in Catholocism. also, from what I have seen in the very early Jewish faith Jehovah has a female companion. I wish I could find my links on that.
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oldraven 
Posted: 25-Mar-2004, 12:27 PM
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Well, that all depends on how you look at it. In the denominations thread, I said there aren't many rules in the bible. In fact there are only ten. One of those is 'No other gods before me'. Now, she admits to asking the goddesses for guidance and such, but I've yet to hear her even say grace. Thus, the goddess comes before God.

Now, if you consider the posibility that goddesses and gods are an adaptation of Angels, then there is a difference. Catholics pray to Mary, who I don't find to be a diety at all, and in that case would be breaking that same commandment. It's all a matter of perception.

Now I'm finding myself trying to align her beliefs with those of Christianity. Looks like some habits are harder to break than others.
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Elspeth 
Posted: 25-Mar-2004, 02:10 PM
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Oldraven,

I am so glad you sat down and talked about this with Ange and found out you weren't as far apart as you feared. smile.gif

Elspeth
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oldraven 
Posted: 25-Mar-2004, 03:22 PM
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Thanks Elspeth. It's a huge weight off my shoulders. If there was ever any danger to our relationship, that would have been it. But like I said elsewhere, my views have been refined lately. I've adopted the live and let live outlook and it's made me a much happier person. Also, I've been considering the posibility of alternate religions aligning with my own. It may all have been the events that played out in different regions of the world. I find it hard to believe that God only made himself known to the people in the middle east, and just as his Angels came to earth there, the posibility of them showing themselves to the people of the Celtic lands, or Norman for that matter, is becoming more and more aparent.

This is all speculation, theory, and going WAY out on a limb, but I can't ignore some certain facts. If God truely loved all of his people, then he would have made an attempt to bring the same peace and happiness to all people everywhere. The concepts are quite similar in many different religions. And this is why I need to start researching and discovering the worlds religions myself. Questions do no good if you never seek the answer. For me ignorance can never be bliss.
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dfilpus 
Posted: 08-Jul-2004, 08:30 AM
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My wife is Roman Catholic and I am Lutheran. We have been married over twenty years.

We agreed that the children would be raised Catholic before we married. I find there are more similarities in the faiths than differences, so I am comfortable with that.

I will not convert because of a minor point in Catholic theology that I cannot accept. This is my own personal matter and does not affect the family.

We have created a large scale agreement with compromise on all sides which has held up for all this time. Find your own compromise.


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