Tasting notes from my travels in American Christianity
#14
(10-09-2019, 08:03 AM)Imperator Caesar Trump Wrote: Option 1: Conservative Evangelicalism.  Where to start?  The pros of this brand of Christianity are more numerous than I think many of us are willing to admit... Moreover, there is a zeitgeist to these churches; they are the only churches that are growing in the U.S. and they already have impressive numbers anyway.  There is a real sense that you are part of something monumental and lasting.  Sixty-five percent of children raised as conservative Evangelicals continue practicing into adulthood!

I've never been to an evangelical service nor have I ever considered converting to evangelicalism, but I definitely have respect for them, in spite of their seriously flawed theology. They are one of the few groups of Christians consistently preaching and practicing traditional Christian morality. Is it any wonder that the Church is hemorrhaging adherents to these evangelical churches? 

According to a Pew Research study (source), Protestants in Latin America have higher rates of religious commitment, are less likely to support gay marriage, and are more likely to share their faith with others than Catholics. A median 60% of Latin American Protestant respondents said the reason they left the Church was because they wanted a greater emphasis on morality (81% said they were seeking a personal relationship with God). Is it any wonder that Latin America is rapidly becoming evangelical/Pentecostal? Theology aside, can we really blame and condemn these apostate Catholics for leaving the Church when the Church has failed to inculcate morality and fallen into spiritual torpor? Personally, I'm loath to say that these evangelical Protestants are going to Hell just for being outside the Church since, morally speaking, they're living more Christian lives than many Catholics.

As for Orthodoxy, I've been to Serbian and Russian Orthodox masses on a few occasions and, while I found the church, music, and liturgy of the mass beautiful, I also found it off-putting. I mentioned in another thread that the first and only time I have attended the TLM (at an FSSP church, nonetheless) thus far, I found it cold and alienating. Well, the Orthodox mass was even more alienating.

The icons painted on every square inch of the church interior, having to stand the entire two+ hours, people constantly milling around the church to light candles at the icons stands, and the priest and his entourage of deacons and whoever else constantly walking in and out from behind the iconostasis to process and incense and so on was bewildering and chaotic. I much prefer the relative order and straightforwardness of the TLM. PLus, at least I get to sit down (the latter experience was actually only at the Russian Orthodox church; the Serbian church had pews and the liturgy was less long-winded and elaborate and was in the vernacular for the most part - yet, I still feel at home in the Catholic Church, NO or TLM).

(Edit: formatting)
Omnia et in omnibus Christus
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RE: Tasting notes from my travels in American Christianity - by whitewashed_tomb - 10-11-2019, 02:26 AM



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