In a Christmas tradition, we have a lot of things to talk about, but what’s most important to remember is to never ever, ever use religious words.
It’s time to stop talking about Jesus and to start talking about the holy bible.
“There’s a lot to talk and it’s really hard to focus on the positive in life, when there’s a big, big mess on the horizon,” said Mark Daley, who works in the office of the director of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives.
“I think the biggest thing is, we need to not talk about religion as an excuse to be lazy.”
The word “Christian” is so widely used in Canada, in fact, that it was once considered derogatory in the U.S. to refer to Christians.
But according to the Christian Coalition, there’s little evidence to suggest Canadians use it negatively.
The group says it received more than 4 million complaints in 2015 about the word, including 6,000 complaints about how it was used in the United States.
“There are a number of ways you can talk about Jesus,” Roodesley said. “
The phrase ‘Christian-Americans’ is used almost exclusively in the Bible Belt.”
“There are a number of ways you can talk about Jesus,” Roodesley said.
“You can use him as an example, and it can be a way of getting through a difficult day.
You can also use him to get out of a situation, or to say, ‘Don’t worry, you can do it too.'”
And when you do talk about the Christian bible, don’t forget to say the word ‘Merry Christmas’ instead of ‘Happy Holidays.’
“A Christian-American can be used as an ‘excuse’ for laziness or for lazier or more irresponsible behaviour,” said Rood’s mother, Mary, who asked not to be named.
“But that’s not what we want our kids to be talking about.”
In her home province of Alberta, the phrase “Happy Holicals” is used by almost one in five households.
In New Brunswick, it’s used about 15 per cent of the time.
“That’s the only way I can think of where it would be OK to use it as a way to get away with being lazy,” Mary said.
In fact, one of the reasons for the use of the word “Christmas” in the first place, according to Rood, is because of the idea that “Christian-American” was created to make it easier for them to use the holiday to get a holiday gift.
In the U., it’s more of a symbol, he said.
Rood said that, in many parts of the world, Christmas is a time of celebration, not a time for self-loathing and social isolation.
But in Canada the word is still used as slang, he added.
“It is used for a lot more than just Christmas,” he said, noting that it’s also used as the name of a family holiday in Canada.
The Canadian Council on Christmas says it receives more than 100,000 calls a day from concerned Christians about how to properly respond to holiday requests.
“We have an obligation to respect our neighbours, our fellow Christians, and the holiday traditions that we observe, and we need our community to respect that as well,” said Christine Sommers, executive director of communications and advocacy.
“We need to work together to support the celebration of the holiday, as we would any other time of year.”
For many people in the country, it could be difficult to get the message across.
“Christmas is a holiday in itself, but in many countries, the word Christmas is used as part of a social or political code of conduct that can be perceived as being offensive,” said Daley.
Daley, Rood and Sommer all agree that religious holidays are a great opportunity for people to get to know their own religion, to reflect and to celebrate together.
And they also agree that it would have been better if Christians in Canada could have more positive words in their Christmas messages.
It’s a bit like when you get a new car, said D.J. Sussman, a retired business owner from Vancouver.
“If you take the word Christ, you have to be careful,” he added, noting the word means “good” in Arabic.
“When I see that word ‘Christ,’ I feel a little bit uncomfortable.
I think it’s a little insensitive to say that you should love Christ.”