My immediate family (siblings and parents) are of a different faith than my wife and I. As we are Catholics, our faith perspective is fairly different from my family (who are LDS/Mormons). Generally, this has not been a troublesome matter, though they tend to encourage us to go to church with them when we visit. We always decline as graciously as possible.
The problem is, this year they went behind our backs (though their intentions were good I’m sure) and instead of doing their tradition of drawing names for gifts, they decided to draw names for “spiritual progression” as Mormons call it. I’m sure we would have gone along with it had we been of the same faith. Even if it had been a one-time event for Christmas, we may have gone along. The real crux of the situation is that they wish to make this a year-long event from this Christmas to next Christmas.
My wife has been assigned a partner (one of my Mormon family members), and I’ve been assigned a partner (one of my Mormon parents). We are supposed to let them know what we’re struggling with in our faith, and that family member is supposed to help us become stronger in that area, and vice versa.
The truth of the matter is, my wife and I are both very private with our faith in God. We do not want to make a show of it, and we really don’t feel like going to someone of another faith with our spiritual matters (family or not). Along the same lines, I do not feel comfortable giving spiritual guidance from a Catholic perspective to my Mormon family members. I would much rather celebrate the holiday by simply worshiping Christ, and sharing our family traditions as we have done in years past.
So my question is, how do we approach my family with this issue? Should we stick to our guts and tell them no? Should we bite the bullet and just go along with it? How do we graciously tell them “No” without becoming the Grinch couple who stole a year’s worth of Christmas?