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For those who did not grow up in the Church, “LDS”, or those in part member families...how would you feel?


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Having grown up in the Southeast, United States, and coming from a family where all are Baptist’s or Evangelicals, my little family is an enigma, to my extended, family. Adding to this, it seems like almost every other male member of my extended family are ministers, including my immediate family, as my Father was prior to his death. This includes myself before I joined the Church, as I began teaching, or preaching from the Baptist pulpit. Because I began in one pulpit, and changed to another, many in that family did not take it well. 
 

Due to my background, and in accordance with the 13th Article of Faith, I always share everything I can, “of good report”, no matter where it comes from, be it Jewish, Catholic, LDS, or other. I pass on most anything on Facebook, in person, even at funerals, when I am asked to speak. Also oddly enough, I am asked to do so many times, however I must take care not to openly quote certain sources. There have been times I have quoted Church leadership, even by name, but I could, and have upset people, by denoting their Church office.

When I post sermons, where the reader (family members, and many friends) can see who it is, no one ever comments, unless they are members. In fact, if I post sermons, be they LDS, Catholic Bishops, Cardinals, or Jewish Priests, my friends who are LDS, comment and share, all the time.  If it is family, and they know it comes from different Faiths, no one ever responds. If I just quote the same comments, not revealing the Faith or those saying it, I get (sometimes) many, many, comments and shares. Sadly, I sometimes omit both the  name and affiliation of who made the wonderful statements, so that others can benefit from their comments, but I don’t like doing this, as I feel the author should be known. 

 

So, having taken the long way around...

Does anyone here who has family and friends who are not members, find yourselves having to hide things you wish to share, for fear it would be outrightly rejected? Do any find yourself wishing you could openly share the great wisdom that has enriched your lives, with those who close their eyes, or stop their ears, just because it comes from our Faith? In what ways do you share the “light and knowledge”, to those who do not wish to “see the light”, or “benefit from the knowledge”, or do you? 
 

I am not sure if it the same everywhere, but here in the “Bible-belt”, we have some unique problems, in these respects, so I am just wondering how it is in your part of the globe.  

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46 minutes ago, Bill “Papa” Lee said:

Having grown up in the Southeast, United States, and coming from a family where all are Baptist’s or Evangelicals, my little family is an enigma, to my extended, family. Adding to this, it seems like almost every other male member of my extended family are ministers, including my immediate family, as my Father was prior to his death. This includes myself before I joined the Church, as I began teaching, or preaching from the Baptist pulpit. Because I began in one pulpit, and changed to another, many in that family did not take it well. 
 

Due to my background, and in accordance with the 13th Article of Faith, I always share everything I can, “of good report”, no matter where it comes from, be it Jewish, Catholic, LDS, or other. I pass on most anything on Facebook, in person, even at funerals, when I am asked to speak. Also oddly enough, I am asked to do so many times, however I must take care not to openly quote certain sources. There have been times I have quoted Church leadership, even by name, but I could, and have upset people, by denoting their Church office.

When I post sermons, where the reader (family members, and many friends) can see who it is, no one ever comments, unless they are members. In fact, if I post sermons, be they LDS, Catholic Bishops, Cardinals, or Jewish Priests, my friends who are LDS, comment and share, all the time.  If it is family, and they know it comes from different Faiths, no one ever responds. If I just quote the same comments, not revealing the Faith or those saying it, I get (sometimes) many, many, comments and shares. Sadly, I sometimes omit both the  name and affiliation of who made the wonderful statements, so that others can benefit from their comments, but I don’t like doing this, as I feel the author should be known. 

 

So, having taken the long way around...

Does anyone here who has family and friends who are not members, find yourselves having to hide things you wish to share, for fear it would be outrightly rejected? Do any find yourself wishing you could openly share the great wisdom that has enriched your lives, with those who close their eyes, or stop their ears, just because it comes from our Faith? In what ways do you share the “light and knowledge”, to those who do not wish to “see the light”, or “benefit from the knowledge”, or do you? 
 

I am not sure if it the same everywhere, but here in the “Bible-belt”, we have some unique problems, in these respects, so I am just wondering how it is in your part of the globe.  

I am not on social media, just e-mail, MDDB and ThirdHour. 

As young adult converts, my wife and I find that discussion about the Church does not come up because that is not normal or natural for either of our families. Our conversions were met with a good deal of contention and opposition so while relationships have since healed to "normal" levels, that means no Church-talk. We raised our children in the faith and they remain in the covenant and raise their children in it.

However, genealogical discussion is usually welcome and even the most skeptical enjoy their FamilySearch accounts as long as no one brings up the "weird"stuff (templework). Oddly, the information flows more freely between the non-members than with all of us. But I would say genealogy is a great common area. If they weren't so skeptical they would recognize and appreciate the light of our wonderful examples! :)

Aside from genealogy, reaching out whenever and however we can as Christ taught us is about all we can do for now.

 

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I'm a person who's in a part-member family.  Between my side and husband's we have a variety of very orthodox LDS Christians, ex, anti, just generic Christian, atheist, etc.  Friends are a likewise mixed batch.    I'll speak to my answer in general, as I'm not on Facebook type places.

I don't say everything I think to everyone-- that's a horrible idea.  Whether faith, politics, science, or any other topic, somethings are best to talk with some people and not others.  When it comes to spiritual matters, what I say is very filtered around my anti relatives.  Some of the ex ones are totally indifferent with me talking about things, unless it's a view point they agree with and then they'll engage.  Some folks just don't want to hear anything that doesn't echo exactly what they think and hence I keep my mouth shut at times (that includes some LDS Christians I know).

The people I can be the most open with are those that we just have talk-about-anything relationships, and those folks include some generic Christians, some LDS ones, and a few atheists.  

 

So yeah... for my experience it's mostly an indicator of how open a person is talking about thing in general, more than their particular faith.  

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As a former evangelical bigot, what I'm reading here is familiar to me. I'm also seeing a fair amount of restraint.

In contrast, folks I worshiped with would have been overt and confrontational.  We were taught how to demean, degrade and tell you we love you - all in one sentence. It was a weird world to be in, believing our worst selves were elevated people.

Edited by Chum
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8 hours ago, Chum said:

As a former evangelical bigot, what I'm reading here is familiar to me. I'm also seeing a fair amount of restraint.

In contrast, folks I worshiped with would have been overt and confrontational.  We were taught how to demean, degrade and tell you we love you - all in one sentence. It was a weird world to be in, believing our worst selves were elevated people.

 

A long time ago, I used to be a self-described fundamental Baptist. I was a minister, or "preacher", as we used to call it. What distinctive Evangelical belief would lead an Evangelical or fundamental Baptist preacher to teach how to degrade and demean while pretending to love? Far be it from me to recommend Evangelicalism, but I cannot relate to the malicious hostility that you describe. Do you think that many or most Evangelicals are like you say you were, bigots who teach "how to demean, degrade and tell you we love you - all in one sentence"? Even if I had been a bigoted Baptist, and hated everybody that disagreed with me, how could I expect people to be attracted to "my truth" if I demeaned and degraded them while teaching my flock to do the same?

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2 hours ago, 3DOP said:

What distinctive Evangelical belief would lead an Evangelical or fundamental Baptist preacher to teach how to degrade and demean while pretending to love?

I can't answer as to which belief. Are you asking what interpretations of scripture lend themselves to attacking other faiths?

I think that could be answered by those people who demonized people of faith for a living. Walter Martin is one highly regarded source of anti-faith rhetoric (eg: The Kingdom of the Cults). Hank Hanegraaff made a respectable living sowing animosity toward other faiths and their believers. Bill Keller became a sort of spokesperson for religious bigotry during the Romney candidacy. There are others. The anti-faith industry is not tiny.

sidebar: Since the Romney nomination and the resulting sunshine, the public displays of animosity seem to have all but disappeared. I hold out hope that genuine change has taken hold.

2 hours ago, 3DOP said:

Far be it from me to recommend Evangelicalism, but I cannot relate to the malicious hostility that you describe.

The overt hostility is in no way universal to E/B; I'd fairly quantify it as a minority of Evangelicals. I count scores of Evangelical/Baptists/(AoG, etc) who made me feel welcome and loved, for every one who showed open disdain.

A couple of things are important to note, however. One is that the anti-faith experiences I received were powerful and memorable. They clearly came with a great deal of background, training and support.  The other is that there is a great deal of room between overt hostility and the tactful, muted negativity reflected in the earlier posts here.

I'd also like to clarify that the bad behavior I'm highlighting isn't at all specific to Evangelicals - these are human failings that exist across all kinds of groups. What makes it notable here is that Christianity teaches a better way and somehow a meaningfully large minority twists those teachings into truly abhorrent behavior (which I once took part in).

Edited by Chum
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I inherited a church from a crooked pastor relative, I have clergy vestments and all, even this sweet pectoral cross.   Also two brass collection plates.   Irl i tend to keep that to myself, technically I could probably do weddings...

 

 

Btw donations are always greedy accepted....

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1 hour ago, poptart said:

I could probably do weddings...

That sounds pretty cool. I'd consider it, if I were in your place.

I have a friend who holds a clerical position in a small congregation. Every blue moon he'll do one for someone he knows. It sounds very fulfilling to me.

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9 minutes ago, Chum said:

That sounds pretty cool. I'd consider it, if I were in your place.

I have a friend who holds a clerical position in a small congregation. Every blue moon he'll do one for someone he knows. It sounds very fulfilling to me.

Uhhh, no at least not yet.  Have my own plans with that.  If I was to do anything with it would probably be with the poor and elderly.  Something that makes my blood boil, a good chunk of the high church protestants don't even have congregations for felons, the poor nor the elderly, there's no money in it.  Seems like whenever you see a big Lutheran and/or Episcopal Church it's smack in the middle of a WASP suburb.  I know a few clergy who do visit nursing facilities, they're from independent Lutheran bodies.  Not Saying it doesn't happen but more often than not...

 

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2 hours ago, poptart said:

I inherited a church from a crooked pastor relative, I have clergy vestments and all, even this sweet pectoral cross.   Also two brass collection plates.   Irl i tend to keep that to myself, technically I could probably do weddings...

 

 

Btw donations are always greedy accepted....

Vestments with your pagan music blasting in the background. You would likely be very popular. :)  

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