Posted by: Buffalo Betty | 2004/11/01

Losing faith in the Church

Hi CS,

I know this is probably not your area of expertise here, I was just wondering if the readers could help me here.

I grew up in a very Christian family. Attending church on sundays was a must. I was confirmed and even taught sunday school in my home church. I suppose the church has to adapt to trends, so one sunday a week, the "song group" was introduced. This is basically 3 people standing in the front of the church in front of microphones with their guitars, singing happy clappy songs. Now I'm not a charasmatic person at all - aren't there churches especially for the happy clappy? (I don't mean to discriminate, but I feel more value in a hymn than singing Jesus I love you 20 times over and over)...When my sister was confirmed, her minister was asked to leave the church for indecent behavior with the confirmation students. After I was confirmed, my minister had to leave the church for buying pornography on the church's account! The newest minister was going really well. He had to build up a broken congregation and I think he did it. But now the song group has their fixed spot every sunday, the organ is being phased out, and we're left singing stupid songs like "hug a bug next to ya" and some songs that I've heard Bhuddists sing while I was in Singapore! It also irritates me that the song group not only goes on and on and on, but that they echo and harmonise the whole time (lets say the echoer/harmoniser) sings louder than the true melody, so you can't follow the tune for the new songs. Not to mention that when the congregation stands up, you can't see the words on the screen in front of you...
But even more worrying is that for the past year or so, our minister is preaching doom and gloom. He's constantly telling us how much we're sinning and dares us to stand up and promise to stop sinning...Last week we were all damned for having debt - you're not supposed to have what you can't afford. Even my parents don't want to go to church anymore. I don't want to go - I don't go - I've been in church maybe 3 times this year. How can people expect to respect our religion if they're damned from the get go?

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Our expert says:
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Well, with the two sex-mad ministers before this one, I;d say that the church kinda lost faith itself. And then when it decides to change it's nature to the happy clappy sort ( which personally I also abhor ) they might attract som new mcongregation members, and must expect to lost others. And this new nminster, has he asked his two predecessors to come and stand up and confess THEIR sins ?
I don't know what denomination you belong to, but surely they have an alternative church not too far away that hasn't changed in these annoyimg ways ?
As Chelle says, surely your faith is supposed to be in God and the Church in terms of its beliefs, not in the personnel or the bullding ?
useful responses all round, maybe especially from lady nina.

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Our users say:
Posted by: lady nina | 2004/11/01

hi there

i completely understand where you coming from and i must say if you are unhappy in a church then it's no use attending

the thing is that the traditional churches are looking at ways to accomodate the young people and they forget by doing that they upset the elder people who is the people who pay their salaries

i can understand the pastors problem - he wants the fold to grow and also keep their members from going to charismatic churches, i think the mature thing to do is to have a meeting with your pastor and let him know that you're spiritual needs are not being met at the moment and as your spiritual leader he has a obligation to either assits you or let you know that he can't take care of you so you can find some other church who will

if i was you i'd attend only the morning service, the more formal one and make some extra time during the week for quite time - this quite time should be the time where God himself will minister to you and meet those unmet needs , once you are filled with his love, life and Word - you should find peace and in that have the authority you need to to speak to your pastor

it sounds as if you have been very patient about all this but oce people "love tanks' are empty they get grumpy and negative , maybe your pastor have been so busy with the things of God that he misses the God of the things

a person who have quality quite time in God presence will have a radiance that pulls people to you and make others listen when you speak, your heart will also be changed towards these people and you will deal with them in humbleness and gentlenes yet with the authority from above

fill your tank in God presence and then make an appointment with the pastor and confront him with solutions not problems


Reply to lady nina
Posted by: Jasmine | 2004/11/01

Its very simple - find a church which you enjoy attending. However, be aware that the Holy Spirit is becoming increasingly active within the churches all over. Remember that church is not there for your entertainment rather that you are there to willingly, happily serve God.

Reply to Jasmine
Posted by: Shaun | 2004/11/01

Hi BB,

I agree with Chelle's latter statements, especially about not putting your faith in those who run the church as they are basically only people. I have also been noticing similar tendencies with our church at present.
It happens sometimes that the church efforts get side-tracked & their focus is not where it was, but I would suggest that you find a church that is more suitable to your faith & beliefs.

Don't lose your faith in the church because of the people who think they run it.


Reply to Shaun
Posted by: Chelle | 2004/11/01

I have found that the biggest sinners are generally the self same people who damn everyone else. A kind of projection of sorts. As you can see from the experiences you have had, priests and pastors are human and have the normal human "failings" - the challenge as far as I see it, is not to put your faith in the people who run the church, but to put your faith in what you believe. Find a church that worships in the manner you feel is compatible with your belief system, but don't give up on your faith because of a few people who seem to have their own agendas!

Reply to Chelle

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