I’m going to briefly tread on potentially controversial ground to ask you a question lovely readers. I think we’re adult enough to tread on the ground of IRL religion briefly and respectfully.
One of my raiders suggested cancelling our Sunday run next week because of the Easter Holiday. This raider said that they had family and church obligations and that they didn’t want to feel as though the guild forced them to choose between their IRL committments and their in game commitments (I’ve been preaching the idea of committment to the raid team to them, and apparently I’ve gotten through to at least a few!).
I hadn’t even considered that the holiday might be a problem for some people. I’ve personally observed Easter all my life, but my tradition does so late Saturday night and/or early Sunday morning, so I hadn’t considered the possibility that people might have commitments in the evening. Also, my family doesn’t have any sort of elaborate family celebration at Easter the way we do for Thanksgiving or on birthdays, so we wouldn’t have anything going on in the evening which was important family-wise. But I probably should have stopped to consider that some raiders might be from religious traditions or families that do have important events on Easter Sunday evening. We didn’t schedule a raid on Christmas day or New Years Eve because we knew people would be busy with other commitments (we did schedule one on St. Patrick’s Day… it was VERY poorly attended), but those are not such strictly religious holidays as Easter… New Years is basically secular, Christmas has a religious origin but is celebrated by the majority in the US, regardless of beliefs.
Frankly, I don’t want to ask them to miss out on our raid that night, I don’t want any of my raiders to feel like they are excluded from a guild activity because of their religious affiliation. I feel like it’s different somehow than someone skipping a raid to celebrate their anniversary or their mom’s birthday, because we could have been sensitive and planned around it. And then, I also know vaguely that Easter coincides with the Jewish holiday of Passover… I don’t know if we have any practicing Jewish raiders, but if there are, I don’t want to exclude them from raids either because of their religious commitment. And I’m suspecting that if there’s one raider in the guild who’s in that situation, there’s probably more than one raider in the guild who is, but who either didn’t think to say anything, or who didn’t dare to ask. Religious questions/revelations are generally met with a lot of hostility in-game. Far more than if you’d asked your professor or basketball coach…
I suppose there are some holidays which can’t be planned around, things like Islam’s Ramadan which lasts for a month… we can’t cancel raiding for a month, sorry. Or maybe relatively unrecognized religious holidays or things that are observed only by a very few — I probably wouldn’t even know about these holidays to work around them! But I think there’s some kind of basic courtesy involved in not planning a group activity during a time that is a major religious observance for a large number of people in the US. So I feel like my raider was right to ask, and I feel like I ought to cancel or reschedule to accommodate that request.
I am afraid some of the less open-minded among the guild won’t see it that way however.
What do you guys think? Have I made the right decision? What would your guild do, or what would you do if you led my guild?