Fatwa ID: 1533
Title: mixed family and holidays
Category: Family and Personal Affairs
Scholar: Dr. Hatem al-Haj
Date: 2006-04-30

Salam alaykom,

I have been muslim for 4 years now. I have 3 catholic children, a new Muslim husband, and a Muslim new baby. My older children still celebrate their holidays.This past year instead of having one big christmas tree in the living room, they each had a small tree in their bedrooms. Even when I was catholic we never emphasized the religious aspects of the holidays.It was always about just being together and having fun. My question is how can I still give these older children their holidays and not do anything wrong or forbidden?


All praise be to Allah, and may his peace and blessings be on the last and best prophet and messenger, Muhammad.


May Allah bless and help you and may He complete his favor upon you by guiding your children to Islam.


With regards to their holidays, you will need to celebrate other non religious events with them to make them feel you still care for them. You may do this more often than you ever did. I mean by those events the end of the school year, birthdays, passing any exams etc.

The religious holidays of non-Muslims are not to be celebrated by us Muslims. However, it is not considered a form of celebration to exchange gifts with them.

Accepting gifts from the non-Muslims is the sunnah of the Prophet (May Allah bless him and give him peace).

If the gift is related directly to their rituals they have on that day, then you may decline to accept it. If the gift however, is not related to their rituals, you may accept it. Imam Ibn Taymeah stated that it is permissible to accept the gifts of the non-Muslims on their feasts, and he mentioned a report from Ali, which indicates that he accepted the gift of some non Muslims on the day of al-Nayrooz.

Aisha was also asked about the Zoroastrians giving gifts to Muslims on their feast, and she said, whatever they slaughtered for the day, don`t eat it, but eat from their trees. (the meet of the Zoroastrians is not permissible). Reported by Ibn abi Shaybah.

You must keep in mind whenever you receive or give gifts to them that you are doing this to reconcile their hearts. It should be clear in your heart and to them that you don`t celebrate those feasts.

Also, if you have "fun" during other times as I indicated here above -, they will understand your position and eventually accept it. It may be helpful to tell them that celebrating those holidays compromises your faith.

You should let them do what they please inside their rooms.


Again, I would encourage you to be close to your children and try to win their hearts. The best gift you can give them is the gift of guidance and salvation.