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Dave Therio
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This is the most awesome idea I could have read at 3:42 on a friday morning.
Toggle Commented Jan 29, 2010 on To Catch a (Faith) Predator at the parish
When the church I attended as a kid would have its alter call, they would also try to include baptism in the holy spirit. I can still freshly remember the feeling of guilt and failure when all the people around me would be babbling like saints or szchitos or whatever. I would try to move my mouth and stutter out gibberish, but it would last merely a few seconds, if that. They would say things like "It's not you speaking, it's the lord." "Just let it flow through you." Which brings to mind Obi-Wan Kenobi explaining the force to Luke Skywalker.
Modern Christianity seems to be wrapped in a fad called "name it: claim it." In my experience, the people in my church most wrapped into it were self made individuals who were middle class, had no real situations in their lives and since they didn't talk to anybody, nobody would argue with them. Those that they did talk to would find themselves cut off in conversation if they ever attributed their luck to anything other than faith.
Toggle Commented Jan 29, 2010 on Faith: Future, Reason, and Revolution at the parish
Jehovah Witnesses 2.0 are just around the corner too. and they have iPhones.
I actually had an experience, where as an intern for a youth group, I was in a position where I prayed at the alter for people. When a kid in our youth group died at age 13, it rocked the congregation like an earthquake. When no answers were provided, I came to ask myself if I was asking the right questions since the youth group lent no support. So when I inevitably ended up on the fearful, angry side of the spectrum, the only answers they had were that I needed to stop asking questions and fall into my role that I was called for. Since that didn't satisfy my 16 year old mind, I left the church. When I rejoined a few years later, they were fearful of me and distrustful to have a heretic among them. When I again stood on the prayer line on that fateful alter, not a soul would be found requesting salvation through my intercession.
The pastor of my old church was big on "persecution porn". Visions of the eternal burning flames of hell were his favorite for us. Ah, the good 'ol days. Going home smelling like fire and brimstone.
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Jan 28, 2010