Login required to started new threads

Login required to post replies

Prev Next
Will western Christianty survive?
Quote | Reply
I've posted before that I semi-regularly attend a Catholic service with my parents. The church is located in a more affluent part of the city in which I live, surrounded by nice apartments and a large private hospital across the road. The church and its grounds reflect the area in which it is located; well maintained and somewhat grandiose. It often hosts visiting priests from around the world, namely Africa and South America. It can at times be a challenge to understand them. It triggered a conversation with my younger brother (whose faith probably sits somewhere between mine and that of my parents) as to whether there are still priests coming through the ranks from 'western' parts of the world. Whether these religions can survive without relaxing some of the constraints imposed on them (i.e. celibacy in the case of the Catholic church).

It seems like it is becoming more difficult for an individual to take such a vow in light of increasing ridicule / hostility in western societies. Granted a good proportion of the (justified) opposition stems from the abuse that has taken place for an extended period of time; but again that comes back to issues such as celibacy. On the one hand enforced celibacy could be what separates out the true believers (that the church wants as priests), on the other it could make them less relatable to the real world.

I don't know how much of the ridicule is independent of the scandals, but if it is then it's a sad reflection on society. The service I attend isn't trying to brainwash anyone and the more recent, resident priests have tried to inject a bit of humour be it football teams or other local matters. Yes there are collections and (going back to the location) they seem to do well, but people are taking away something in return. It's hard to explain what that is (each to their own), much like someone attending a meditation class trying to prove what they got from the class. For me it truly is the one time of the week I actually stop and concentrate on how grateful I am for my three beautiful, healthy (touch wood) kids, the support of my family, the opportunities I've been given in life and the wonderful city/country I've been fortunate enough to be born in (relative to other parts of the world) and how I hope that collectively we can all do better. Sure this reflection could take place anywhere, but the reality is it would never happen with as much concentration/sincerity as it does in a place of worship.

I don't quite understand why some feel the need to mock that with such gusto. Is it really such a bad thing that people use religion as a means for a time out, to recalibrate their moral compass etc? I see the derision as perhaps one reason why young people are not taking up the vocation of priesthood. By all means eradication of the abuse must be achieved, but it does not require the full abolishment of the church. Being a priest and being an outstanding individual are not mutually exclusive.

If the decline continues then it takes away something special for a lot of people. I see significantly less upside. Some may cite abuse but as I've pointed out before significantly more abuse occurs in the family home and also occurs at the hands of other 'trusted' individuals such as teachers, coaches etc. It would be interesting to see the extent of the opposition in the hypothetical scenario where systemic abuse had not occurred. Unfortunately we'll never get to see that 'what if'.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
A couple of comments. Catholicism is a small subset of western christianity, and yes they face additional challenges. I don't think ridicule/ hostility is a challenge for them at all - it is just a mild by-product of other issues. I certainly don't think ridicule is a factor of any real weight in the decision of a young man to commit to a life without physical intimacy - there are much more important implications than that.

Religion generally is in decline in the western world, and is doing very well in the undeveloped world. It is most prevalent in the most tragically disadvantaged parts of the globe. Religious adherence is inversely correlated with education, wealth and political emancipation; so where it is in decline that is to be celebrated because of what it represents. Of course it is no bad thing if people use religion as a means for a time out. It can be a problem if they use it to recalibrate their moral compass, because religion has such a bad record of promoting immoral beliefs that decent people would, in the absence of religious injunction, reject.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Previously lots of people went to church because they had to, because society required it. You neighbors would judge you for not attending. Now society has changed and the people attending church are much more likely to be people that want to be there and believe in it.

I think that is good. Would you have preferred we go back to the day where people just pretended to believe?
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
I think the abuse has swayed many.

I follow The Irish Times on Facebook and in the past two years the comments have shifted significantly.

This morning’s example:
https://www.facebook.com/...238653676158?sfns=mo

The treatment of women by the church especially in Ireland with the mother and baby homes and the laundries makes the whole organization come off as completely hypocritical. Add all of the abuse cover ups and it’s hard to see that those in charge actually believe what they are selling.

The latest evidence of priests impregnating nuns and getting them abortions is just another nail in their coffin.

The amount of money some of the churches bring in vs what they give is questionable.

That said there are lots of good things good churches bring to communities and individuals.

So maybe a massive structure change is needed. In addition to letting priests marry and have families I think women should be given equal footing, respect and treatment.

Men should be judged the same as women. If a young girl is outed from a parish for getting knocked up the boy/ man/ priest who did it should be treated the same.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
If people feel better still believing in fairy tales then let them. My MIL is one of them. Her problem is that she get's in our face about it rather than keeping it to herself. I just want church and state kept separate and out of politics at all cost. Technically, my heritage is Catholic, but that's the most regressive church of them all IMHO.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [Bone Idol] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Bone Idol wrote:
A couple of comments. Catholicism is a small subset of western christianity,.

I stopped reading here once you demonstrated you were incompetent to comment
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [cerveloguy] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
cerveloguy wrote:
If people feel better still believing in fairy tales then let them. My MIL is one of them. Her problem is that she get's in our face about it rather than keeping it to herself. I just want church and state kept separate and out of politics at all cost. Technically, my heritage is Catholic, but that's the most regressive church of them all IMHO.

Do you have to be so crass and disrespectful and call them fairy tales?
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [chaparral] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
chaparral wrote:
Previously lots of people went to church because they had to, because society required it. You neighbors would judge you for not attending. Now society has changed and the people attending church are much more likely to be people that want to be there and believe in it.

I think that is good. Would you have preferred we go back to the day where people just pretended to believe?

How far back are you going? In the 70s and into the 80s, we went to church religiously (pardon the pun) every Sunday. In fact, my father went every single morning during the workweek as well. We were one of, maybe 3 or 4 families who went every Sunday. There definitely wasn't an expectation from society that we go to church.

I think what is more the issue is the number of distractions in our world today. "Back in the day," nothing was open, nothing was on tv, nothing to do before noon on Sunday. Now, Sunday is almost like any other day, so, people "don't have time" for church.

I'm not challenging the assertion that religion is losing followers. But, think there are a number of reasons why.

If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went. - Will Rogers

Emery's Third Coast Triathlon | Tri Wisconsin Triathlon Team | Push Endurance | GLWR
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [windywave] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
windywave wrote:
Bone Idol wrote:
A couple of comments. Catholicism is a small subset of western christianity,.


I stopped reading here once you demonstrated you were incompetent to comment

Fine by me, fatboy!
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [windywave] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
windywave wrote:
Bone Idol wrote:
A couple of comments. Catholicism is a small subset of western christianity,.


I stopped reading here once you demonstrated you were incompetent to comment

What? More than half is small. :)

We are so fucked.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [windywave] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
windywave wrote:
Do you have to be so crass and disrespectful and call them fairy tales?

Irony alert!!

You live to be crass and disrespectful. Live with it you fat princess.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [Bone Idol] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Bone Idol wrote:
windywave wrote:
Bone Idol wrote:
A couple of comments. Catholicism is a small subset of western christianity,.


I stopped reading here once you demonstrated you were incompetent to comment

Fine by me, fatboy!

There are 1.2 billion Catholics imbecile
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [Bone Idol] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Bone Idol wrote:
windywave wrote:
Do you have to be so crass and disrespectful and call them fairy tales?

Irony alert!!

You live to be crass and disrespectful. Live with it you fat princess.

Only to my intellectual inferiors
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
I also wonder if the whole idea of The Virgin Mary and Immaculate Conception doesn’t write men not taking responsibility for actions into the base of the religion.

That is of course how every female ended up in the mother and baby homes and the laundries, isn’t it? I mean they may have lost their lives or large parts of it to hard labor- but no men were ever sent off for their part in it.

Here is an interesting article
https://www.irishtimes.com/...n-1.3782938?mode=amp
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [Moonrocket] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Moonrocket wrote:
I also wonder if the whole idea of The Virgin Mary and Immaculate Conception doesn’t write men not taking responsibility for actions into the base of the religion.

That is of course how every female ended up in the mother and baby homes and the laundries, isn’t it?

A) no
B) no
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [JSA] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
JSA wrote:
chaparral wrote:
Previously lots of people went to church because they had to, because society required it. You neighbors would judge you for not attending. Now society has changed and the people attending church are much more likely to be people that want to be there and believe in it.

I think that is good. Would you have preferred we go back to the day where people just pretended to believe?


How far back are you going? In the 70s and into the 80s, we went to church religiously (pardon the pun) every Sunday. In fact, my father went every single morning during the workweek as well. We were one of, maybe 3 or 4 families who went every Sunday. There definitely wasn't an expectation from society that we go to church.

I think what is more the issue is the number of distractions in our world today. "Back in the day," nothing was open, nothing was on tv, nothing to do before noon on Sunday. Now, Sunday is almost like any other day, so, people "don't have time" for church.

I'm not challenging the assertion that religion is losing followers. But, think there are a number of reasons why.

I would say it started in the 60s, but it was not some instant thing. There was a lot of inertia.

I think you example of Sunday becoming is just more of an example. It used to be illegal to be working on Sunday. Then it became legal, but many of the owners would be at church, as would many of the customers, so they stayed closed. Slowly as more people don't go to church, they started to open. Still your point agrees with mine, that many people that were going to church were not going because of some deep belief. If they are not going to church because there is other stuff to do, they don't really believe.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [Moonrocket] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Moonrocket wrote:
I also wonder if the whole idea of The Virgin Mary and Immaculate Conception doesn’t write men not taking responsibility for actions into the base of the religion.

That is of course how every female ended up in the mother and baby homes and the laundries, isn’t it? I mean they may have lost their lives or large parts of it to hard labor- but no men were ever sent off for their part in it.

Here is an interesting articlehttps://www.irishtimes.com/...n-1.3782938?mode=amp[/quote[/url]]

Do you realize the virgin birth and immaculate conception are 2 different things. I am thinking you don't if you think one somehow absolves men of their responsibilities. One is related to Mary's conception and the other to Jesus's.

In the Bible Jesus took responsibility for Jesus when he did not have to so I don't see how this story is about man not being responsible.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [chaparral] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
chaparral wrote:
JSA wrote:
chaparral wrote:
Previously lots of people went to church because they had to, because society required it. You neighbors would judge you for not attending. Now society has changed and the people attending church are much more likely to be people that want to be there and believe in it.

I think that is good. Would you have preferred we go back to the day where people just pretended to believe?


How far back are you going? In the 70s and into the 80s, we went to church religiously (pardon the pun) every Sunday. In fact, my father went every single morning during the workweek as well. We were one of, maybe 3 or 4 families who went every Sunday. There definitely wasn't an expectation from society that we go to church.

I think what is more the issue is the number of distractions in our world today. "Back in the day," nothing was open, nothing was on tv, nothing to do before noon on Sunday. Now, Sunday is almost like any other day, so, people "don't have time" for church.

I'm not challenging the assertion that religion is losing followers. But, think there are a number of reasons why.


I would say it started in the 60s, but it was not some instant thing. There was a lot of inertia.

I think you example of Sunday becoming is just more of an example. It used to be illegal to be working on Sunday. Then it became legal, but many of the owners would be at church, as would many of the customers, so they stayed closed. Slowly as more people don't go to church, they started to open. Still your point agrees with mine, that many people that were going to church were not going because of some deep belief. If they are not going to church because there is other stuff to do, they don't really believe.

Yep. I see what you are saying. To me, the more interesting question is whether "faith" is declining or merely organized religion is declining. It seems like you hear about a lot of people who say they have faith or are "spiritual" but, don't follow organized religion.

If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went. - Will Rogers

Emery's Third Coast Triathlon | Tri Wisconsin Triathlon Team | Push Endurance | GLWR
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
In a few hundered years the last remaining embers of Christianity will only smoler in small regions of South America. Islam is the most likely heir to the title of world's dominant religion. Eventually Islam's control will fade to sectarian beliefs. Then a few thousand years later, the Emperor Shaddam IV will install the Duke Leto Atradies on Arakkis. This will ultimately lead to the fusion of the Bene Gesserit and Fremen mysticisms.

Its all just fiction anyway...

Clamo, clamatis, omnes clamamus pro glace lactis
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
When you talk about celibacy you are talking about a unique challenge of the Roman Catholic church. I understand your concern about he supply of priests for the RC church. I have somehow become the doctor for local Catholic priests and half of them locally have been from the second world (mainly India). Western Christianity will survive. It has been around for 2000 years now. And Roman Catholicism will be part of it.

https://www.cbc.ca/...ces-minors-1.5006609

Today there was a report of over 200 coaches in amateur sports convicted of child abuse in Canada. Is there going to be an end of coaching?

Thirty or forty years ago many people went to church because it was respectable or expected. But many were not that committed. A greater proportion of the people who come now are committed. Jesus didn't talk about cultural hegemony in fact he talked about suffering for the gospel.

Will Western democracy survive? Full participatory democracy has been around for maybe one hundred years. Scholars are now talking about liberalism (in the classic sense) failing because of inherent problems in its basic premises.

Perhaps the real revolutionaries are those that keep their promises.
Last edited by: len: Feb 10, 19 19:33
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [windywave] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
After thousands of years, tell me which key Biblical tales have historical evidence as told Biblically? Where is the actual proof of a god? There must be an element of mythology (or fairy tale as one might say), as that’s simply how humans naturally tell stories that are meant to invoke the divine. As I’ve made clear before countless times here, I believe there’s beauty and value in those stories, but it doesn’t make them any less mythical. And there’s nothing wrong with acknowledging them as such while still preserving their transformative power.

And in that vein, I’d have zero issue seeing Western evangelical Christianity die its death, but the high church, orthodox (particularly Eastern), and emergent branches remain strong in their traditional roles. Evangelical Christianity, to me, occupies more space in group think and politicalization of religion than it does the values of Jesus.


windywave wrote:
cerveloguy wrote:
If people feel better still believing in fairy tales then let them. My MIL is one of them. Her problem is that she get's in our face about it rather than keeping it to herself. I just want church and state kept separate and out of politics at all cost. Technically, my heritage is Catholic, but that's the most regressive church of them all IMHO.

Do you have to be so crass and disrespectful and call them fairy tales?
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [mv2005] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Many people (not sure of %), feel or intuit there's a something to revere or show gratitude to, and are not sure how to proceed. Their mistake is placing their trust in folks (priests, pastors, etc.) who really know no more than they do, or, is there really is anything to know. Fact is we have to grow our own peaches.
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [LorenzoP] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Peaches come from a can and they were put there by a man, Lorenzo.

LorenzoP wrote:
Many people (not sure of %), feel or intuit there's a something to revere or show gratitude to, and are not sure how to proceed. Their mistake is placing their trust in folks (priests, pastors, etc.) who really know no more than they do, or, is there really is anything to know. Fact is we have to grow our own peaches.
Last edited by: MidwestRoadie: Feb 10, 19 19:52
Quote Reply
Re: Will western Christianty survive? [MidwestRoadie] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
this song gets to it soon enough even for the impatient; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZ6INAayEJI
Quote Reply

Prev Next