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Do you ever go to church?

General socialising and light-hearted discussions take place in here.
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On what occasions are you prepared to set foot in a church? (Apart from as a tourist!)

Wouldn't set foot in one
17
10%
Would attend only for a ceremony (specify below)
71
43%
Would attend for a ceremony, memorial service or a carol service.
49
30%
Would attend a normal service.
29
17%
 
Total votes: 166

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gunnerstahl
Posts: 7
Joined: November 13th, 2009, 11:41 am

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#241 Post by gunnerstahl » November 14th, 2009, 8:05 am

Latest post of the previous page:

getreal wrote:How could you tell that the people cared for each other? In what way did they express this?

Didn't you get told stories with a moral at home, or in school, which weren't based on religion?

At school I remember 2 in particular. The story of the hare and the tortoise and a story about prisoners of war being sent chocolate by the red cross at christmas. Everyone shared except one selfish bastard chap. he squirreled his away to save for himself and it wen't mouldy before he could eat it.
If they cared for each other is another question all together, but they expressed care for each other just by hugging each other and smiling. It was one of those meet your neighbor excercises. I did get told stories with morals at school and at home, but this questions about church, and there yes too.

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getreal
Posts: 4354
Joined: November 20th, 2008, 5:40 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#242 Post by getreal » November 14th, 2009, 11:03 am

But people hug each other in many venues, it does not necessarily mean they actually care for each other.

When I went to the Tim Minchin gig in Glasgow I was hugging loads of people. It didn't mean I genuinly cared for them. I was just "caught up in the moment".

The reason I asked about the moral stories, was because you said this was a valuable thing you felt you had learned from church. I was just pointing out that there are many other opportunities to hear allegorical* stories.

* if this is the correct use of "allegory"
"It's hard to put a leash on a dog once you've put a crown on his head"-Tyrion Lannister.

gunnerstahl
Posts: 7
Joined: November 13th, 2009, 11:41 am

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#243 Post by gunnerstahl » November 14th, 2009, 11:29 am

Whether they genuinely care about each other doesn't matter. The caught up in the moment feeling itself is useful. My main point is that overall it's an environment in which you can learn valuable things and feel supported. Of course every church is different though.

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getreal
Posts: 4354
Joined: November 20th, 2008, 5:40 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#244 Post by getreal » November 14th, 2009, 4:49 pm

gunnerstahl wrote:Whether they genuinely care about each other doesn't matter. The caught up in the moment feeling itself is useful.
If it doean't matter wheather the sentiment is genuine or not, what worth can it possibly have? A " caught up in the moment" feeling is nice at the time, but it's valueless by itself.
My main point is that overall it's an environment in which you can learn valuable things and feel supported. Of course every church is different though.
I disagree. Overall it's an enviornment of deceit. And yes, every church is different. I am sure there are people who get lots of emotional support from their fellow churchgoers, but people get emotional support from lots of groups. Churches don't have the monopoly on that, in fact I would say that more people get emotional support outwith church organisations than in them.
"It's hard to put a leash on a dog once you've put a crown on his head"-Tyrion Lannister.

Marian
Posts: 3985
Joined: August 23rd, 2009, 2:25 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#245 Post by Marian » November 15th, 2009, 1:21 am

getreal wrote:If it doean't matter wheather the sentiment is genuine or not, what worth can it possibly have? A " caught up in the moment" feeling is nice at the time, but it's valueless by itself.
Hey! Give a person a bit of a boost and look what happens! They steal the words right out of my mouth. :D
getreal wrote:I disagree. Overall it's an enviornment of deceit. And yes, every church is different. I am sure there are people who get lots of emotional support from their fellow churchgoers, but people get emotional support from lots of groups. Churches don't have the monopoly on that, in fact I would say that more people get emotional support outwith church organisations than in them.
I have found this emotional support to be contingent on professing similar beliefs. In other words, it's not an unconditional support; it's more like a clique. Of course, if you no longer believe in fairy tales, you are just sh** out of luck. :D
Transformative fire...

gunnerstahl
Posts: 7
Joined: November 13th, 2009, 11:41 am

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#246 Post by gunnerstahl » November 15th, 2009, 6:15 am

getreal wrote:
gunnerstahl wrote:Whether they genuinely care about each other doesn't matter. The caught up in the moment feeling itself is useful.
If it doean't matter wheather the sentiment is genuine or not, what worth can it possibly have? A " caught up in the moment" feeling is nice at the time, but it's valueless by itself.
My main point is that overall it's an environment in which you can learn valuable things and feel supported. Of course every church is different though.
I disagree. Overall it's an enviornment of deceit. And yes, every church is different. I am sure there are people who get lots of emotional support from their fellow churchgoers, but people get emotional support from lots of groups. Churches don't have the monopoly on that, in fact I would say that more people get emotional support outwith church organisations than in them.
You can find usefulness even in things that aren't necessarily good, pure, etc; that's exactly how life is. It's just a matter of sifting through to find a point; like reading a book and finding a a meaning that may not be what the author thought it was possible of conveying at all.

Doc
Posts: 147
Joined: July 2nd, 2009, 7:27 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#247 Post by Doc » November 24th, 2009, 7:51 am

Doc wrote:A Christian town councillor from Bideford in Devon has complained to the local paper that two other councillors didn’t attend the Remembrance church service on Sunday - although they did attend the ceremony at the War Memorial. These two councillors are non-believers, but, apparently, not going to a church service shows a lack of respect and is a bad example for children.

Local Humanists are, of course, responding to this & expect the letters pages of the local paper to rapidly fill with comments. This may also become a bigger story...
...& here's a couple of comments published in the North Devon newspaper, one from the Councillor criticised and one from Devon Humanists:

Status of church services questionableThursday, November 19, 2009, 07:00

BY criticising Councillor Peter Christie and myself for not attending a religious service at St Mary's Church after the Armistice parade was over, Councillor Tony Inch has raised questions about the status of such services ( Journal Nov 12). For any council to deem certain services of a particular religion as "civic" is in my opinion probably unlawful indirect discrimination due to the exclusive nature of such services.

In this instance it also led to public criticism of those that did not "set aside" their beliefs to attend as Councillor Inch says he expects.

It also damages our democracy if people think that as a councillor they must participate in acts of worship or be criticised if they do not. Some weeks ago a person I met expressed an interest in standing at the next elections but immediately said no on hearing of prayers at council meetings.

Now that Councillor Inch has brought matters to a head the solution must lie in ceasing to deem certain church services as "civic". The Mayor and councillors would then no longer be expected to attend such services in civic regalia, if at all, but they are free to go as private individuals if they so wish. This reform would not of course affect the Remembrance parade which is both inclusive and public.

Council membership must never be thought to be just for particular types of people. Practices that sustain such a belief are in my opinion morally wrong.

COUNCILLOR CLIVE BONE,

Bideford.

I THINK it is very cheap for Bideford Town Councillor Tony Inch to criticise councillors Clive Bone and Peter Christie for not attending the church service after the Remembrance Sunday parade even though they attended the parade itself and the two minutes' silence.

Religion and ceremony are closely woven and events like the Remembrance Sunday Service have previously brought people together but nowadays very few people go to church and many of them do not want to be made to go to church as the only way to show their respect and thanks to those who fight and have fought for our country.

Religion no longer has a monopoly for wedding and funeral ceremonies and it should not have a monopoly for ceremonies that honour our Armed Forces. Ceremonies should be about people taking part willingly and it is absurd to suggest that we should 'do it for the children' because in my experience most children will see through the hypocrisy of that straight away.

Councillor Christie is clearly sensitive to the need for the Mayor to represent everyone but going to church nowadays only represents the wishes of a small minority. There is great support in Devon for our Armed Forces and it comes from people of many faiths and none, who all have a right to show that support in their own ways. They should not be forced into church.

Religious intolerance is one of the main reasons that our forces are fighting abroad and it is disappointing to find a petty example of it here in North Devon.

KEITH DENBY,

North Devon Humanists,

Barnstaple.

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Alan H
Posts: 24062
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#248 Post by Alan H » November 24th, 2009, 3:08 pm

Excellent letters!
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

red0459
Posts: 1
Joined: January 15th, 2010, 10:12 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#249 Post by red0459 » January 15th, 2010, 11:05 pm

Hi!
I was raised a Catholic by my parents but when I was about twelve or thirteen I refused to go to church with them from then on. I'd say I was an atheist from about thirteen or fourteen. Until recently the last time I had been in a church was my fathers funeral when I was sixteen and that's the last funeral I have gone to. Recently there have been some weddings and a Christening in my close family so I went to keep my mum company and to participate in the festivities. I didn't join in with the prayers or blessing myself. I joined in when everyone stood so I wouldn't feel awkward or make my mother feel awkward but didn't kneel with everyone. I found the experience so surreal. I can't believe that that was normal for me once!

So I would go to make my family happy or say if I was in Paris I would have a look round Notre Dame because I have an interest in architecture.

Manuel
Posts: 184
Joined: October 29th, 2009, 8:59 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#250 Post by Manuel » January 15th, 2010, 11:24 pm

A story not so dissimilar from mine. Welcome red, I hope you find yourself at home here, and not least for your architectural interests. Personally I'm a sucker for the Victorian.

Birdcrazy
Posts: 9
Joined: March 11th, 2010, 4:04 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#251 Post by Birdcrazy » March 11th, 2010, 4:30 pm

Well, only for a wedding or something like that.

I live with fundie grandma and sort of religious aunt and uncle, but they don't go to church and they don't make me. Grandma's too shy in her old age, and the other two never went to church. Through the years, the churches I went to were more and more liberal, until finally I ditched them all together.
I broke free from fundamentalist Christianity

kozmic_tulip
Posts: 14
Joined: March 12th, 2010, 10:27 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#252 Post by kozmic_tulip » March 16th, 2010, 10:58 pm

I grew up with God in the center of my life. When I would do something my mother did not approve of, it would be...'well, I guess you'll have to face God with that decision' If I had a dime for every time I heard that, I would have a helluva lotta dimes!!
I was raised Baptist, I was even baptised in my 30's. But deep down I still had unanswered questions about these beliefs being taught to me, accompanied by a great deal of doubt.
My Mom is now 94, and most conversations she has with me are based around how blessed she is and her Christian beliefs. I have never told her that I am now a devout Atheist, only because I don’t want her to worry that she has failed me, I don’t pretend to be Christian either, but I just listen to her and smile politely. She wouldn’t understand my feelings, and this is fine with me. I just want her to be happy and at peace, and she is. My family are all Christians, so I guess I am the little black sheep in their flock, but I like this role and have to kinda smile when I think about it. See, I've finally found my peace too, in understanding that I need answers and more than just 'blind faith' to get me through life. I think knowing a lot about Christianity has helped me to make a clearer decision to be atheist, I don’t mean that in a negative way, I just think it helps to know the facts before deciding or having a view about something. I find it interesting to learn about different beliefs, we had a Pagan Witch come into my work place (a high security mental health hospital) to discuss her beliefs and it was very fascinating to say the least.
peace
koz ;)

seyorni
Posts: 122
Joined: February 17th, 2010, 8:49 am

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#253 Post by seyorni » March 18th, 2010, 10:14 pm

I wouldn't be averse to attending the local Unitarian-Universalist church. They're very big on social, enviromental and political issues.
The congregation was polled once and slightly over 50% of the congregation identified as athiest.

Cremnlin
Posts: 8
Joined: April 9th, 2010, 4:28 am

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#254 Post by Cremnlin » April 9th, 2010, 5:50 am

Neither I nor any of my family belongs to a religion, so I have no reason to go to church. I have, however, attended a few regular congregations just to experience what I often debate against.

Marian
Posts: 3985
Joined: August 23rd, 2009, 2:25 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#255 Post by Marian » April 9th, 2010, 11:53 am

Cremnlin wrote:Neither I nor any of my family belongs to a religion, so I have no reason to go to church. I have, however, attended a few regular congregations just to experience what I often debate against.
Hi Cremnlin! Welcome to the forum. Not sure if you've already visited the Intro thread but you're welcome to if you wish. :smile:

Oh cool! No religion in your family? Want to adopt me? :wink: My mother is Catholic and I'm atheist. You can tell we don't broach that subject very often! Talk about a continental divide. :laughter:
Transformative fire...

Cremnlin
Posts: 8
Joined: April 9th, 2010, 4:28 am

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#256 Post by Cremnlin » April 9th, 2010, 8:07 pm

Thanks for the warm welcome Marian! Yes, pretty much my whole close family is not religious because they are all from the Soviet Union. I was born in Belarus, a former soviet state and was always brought up without religion.

Marian
Posts: 3985
Joined: August 23rd, 2009, 2:25 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#257 Post by Marian » April 10th, 2010, 10:22 am

Cremnlin wrote:Thanks for the warm welcome Marian! Yes, pretty much my whole close family is not religious because they are all from the Soviet Union. I was born in Belarus, a former soviet state and was always brought up without religion.
You are welcome! :)
What's it like to move from state-enforced atheism to Bible-banging US of A?
Transformative fire...

Cremnlin
Posts: 8
Joined: April 9th, 2010, 4:28 am

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#258 Post by Cremnlin » April 10th, 2010, 10:48 pm

Well, I've actually never witnessed the USSR, I'm not old enough. I was born and raised in a free country (mostly) where religion is not put down, just most people don't really believe in it. It was just never a part of my life, so I was able to think for myself about the world. I wasn't aware of any change when I moved to the US. Maybe I was too young, or maybe I live in a relatively secular part of the country. But anyway, who's gonna preach to a random 7 year old who doesn't even know English? :D

The first time I remember discussing religion with an American was in 3rd grade when I asked my friend why he thought God existed. He said that be believed because the Bible said he exists. I then asked him why he thought what the Bible said was true. He responded by saying that in the Bible God said the Bible was true. This circular logic still makes me laugh to this day.

Marian
Posts: 3985
Joined: August 23rd, 2009, 2:25 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#259 Post by Marian » April 11th, 2010, 12:56 am

Cremnlin wrote: The first time I remember discussing religion with an American was in 3rd grade when I asked my friend why he thought God existed. He said that be believed because the Bible said he exists. I then asked him why he thought what the Bible said was true. He responded by saying that in the Bible God said the Bible was true. This circular logic still makes me laugh to this day.
:laughter: Sad in a humorous sort of way that by 3rd grade, that kid was completely indoctrinated. Did you ever get asked about going to church by your American peers as you grew up?
Transformative fire...

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grammar king
Posts: 869
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#260 Post by grammar king » April 19th, 2010, 3:22 am

I would go for a ceremony or a memorial service but probably not for a carol service - that's more to do with me not liking carols all that much though. One thing I do refuse to do on principle is to go to church at Christmas or Easter. They use attendance figures from those days to try and figure out how many people they have in their parish, and I refuse to bolster up their numbers. That has been something of a sticking point in the past.

Arraness
Posts: 2
Joined: April 19th, 2010, 10:18 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#261 Post by Arraness » April 19th, 2010, 10:39 pm

I used to be what most would consider a 'Committed Christian' but over the past five years my beliefs have waned to the point that I am now pretty much an Atheist.

It was interesting how it happened. First I lost my belief in Jesus and then, after a good while, God. I somehow assumed that they would've gone together.

Sometimes I miss the comfort, however false, that having a belief in God and all He represented used to bring.

Do you think we're programmed by nature to need a belief system?

Rick.

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