About five years ago, I taught a course called Christian Beliefs at a Catholic university. During each class period, we would discuss a different topic that connected in some way to the ideas presented in the Nicene Creed. I had almost forgotten just how troubling the responses where. First, a bit of Pegobry homosexuality in christianity Of the thirteen Catholic students, had attended a Catholic high school.
Eight of those had been through twelve years of Catholic education. As I perused these index cards last week, I was taken Pegobry homosexuality in christianity to the shock I experienced as a second-year teacher reading the responses my class had provided.
A few were easily predictable:. But those accounted for such a small percentage of student responses. Most students who listed two "Pegobry homosexuality in christianity" more of the above had written perhaps one other statement of belief on their index cards. A significant number also included statements defining Christian beliefs against certain actions, groups of people, or other kinds of beliefs:. I remember taking these cards home after class that day and puzzling over them.
Had my students just blown off the assignment? Or were they really unable to think of any other theological issues as core tenets of the Christian faith? At the beginning of the next class session, I initiated a discussion about the responses. I asked everyone to work together in small groups and describe in detail their thought processes during the index card assignment. As I drifted from group to group listening to the conversations, what I heard surprised and saddened me. I heard stories of students who were taught to say a few words for the unborn every night at bedtime prayers but had no idea how to describe the Holy Spirit, students whose high school religion courses had covered morality backwards and forwards but had never touched on Scripture or Church history, students who had attended Catholic school since kindergarten but had no idea that Jesus was God until they had read the first chapter of our course textbook, and students who were becoming or had already become so disenchanted with the shallow messages they were receiving at church that they were considering leaving Christianity entirely.
In fact, they had taken it very seriously, and many had articulated carefully all the tenets of Christianity they had ever known.
I handed each group a copy of the Nicene Creed and explained that for the rest of the semester, all our readings would center on theological exploration of different parts of that statement of faith. I asked groups to spend a few minutes looking through the Creed and jotting down some questions they had what they read. They posed some excellent questions: What does it mean to say that Jesus is one in being with the Father?
Why do Protestant churches that use the Creed recite the part about belonging to one holy, catholicand apostolic church? As it turned out, we had a wonderful semester.
What saddens me is the reality that a group of young Christians in their late teens and early twenties—most of whom had been Christians their entire lives—were in need of such a basic introduction to their own religion. The fact that such a reality is possible in a classroom filled with students raised in the Church makes me gravely worried for the future of Christianity. It Pegobry homosexuality in christianity clearer to me every semester that we as a Church have misplaced our priorities.
With some regularity, I encounter students who identify as liberal Christians but know only about Christian principles of social justice and little to nothing about the theology that undergirds those principles.
If you look at how Christian leaders are portrayed in the public eye, it never has anything to do with affirmations of the Trinity, the power of the sacraments, or the hope of resurrection. More often than not, Christian leaders that most people see publically especially in the media are combatting behaviors and social norms perceived to be contrary to the Christian faith. It seems that anyone can create a list of items that Christians are against: We lose people because we lose the opportunity to invite them to follow Christ as one of his disciples.
Every day at work, I see the consequences of these "Pegobry homosexuality in christianity" battles as I Pegobry homosexuality in christianity into the faces of the next generation. Surely, the attractive pull of the Gospel has the power to guide us all into the fullness of life in Christ… while also having the power to bring the next generation along with us. Please remember that we, and all others commenting on this blog, are people. If your comment is rude, it will be deleted.
If you are constantly negative, argumentative, or bullish, you will not be able to comment anymore. We are the sole moderators of the combox. Hearing that your students might Pegobry homosexuality in christianity moved from the smaller list of unchallenged beliefs to a larger set of more valuable and helpful questions makes me hope that it also led to a deeper respect. A deeper respect for the long-held and much-challenged tenets of belief found in the Nicene Creed and, maybe, a revulsion for the lesser thought-through assumptions they had listed before.
In Christ, Leslie Banta. This particular group of students made me feel quite hopeful. That semester was fantastic.
Not every section ends up being so great, though. But it feels great to be able to help students who are genuinely interested in learning more about Christianity.
Thanks for your comment and the encouragement. I am still struggling with what the purpose of church is. Especially if there are so many different denominations and styles of belief. Especially when they want you to protest abortion clinics and evangelize people on the streets.
I am not sure this is what I want to be doing. This may be a little off on a tangent but why do we need to go to a formal church any way? Do I really need to take communion? Do I really need to join a study group? I guess my question would be how are we supposed to be discipled? You always have such great questions for us.
Thank you for asking us to more time thinking on certain issues that might not have occurred to us otherwise. Lindsey and I have been discussing your questions from today, and we think they might be best addressed in a full post at some point within the next few weeks.
We think these questions are important and need to be addressed thoroughly, but we might Pegobry homosexuality in christianity a few weeks to do that. So often, your comments inspire new posts for A Queer Calling, and we are very grateful to have you as a reader.
Kathy, you can do all those things. Do they help you? Do you believe you need redemption, do you feel a need to grow closer and closer to Jesus? Have you found Him elsewhere? I doubt you will outside of the Church, but who knows?
Keep looking, and when you get tired just know that the Pegobry homosexuality in christianity will be open.
But why the Church? I could give you several reasons for that, but perhaps I would bore you. And I have never listened to a single homily Pegobry homosexuality in christianity abortion. Indeed it was the pain and guilt I suffered that turned me from an atheist to a repented sinner in confessionary, and few were the times I felt so light as after being absolved by the priest and told, with a smile, to raise my head and move on.
And then I partook of communion with tears, and then my healing began. Thanks for reading our post today. You bring up some good points about the experience of church bringing beauty, rest, and healing. My experience of church has included those things as well. I think many people experience church in ways that do not include these or other noticeably positive aspects.
Thanks again for stopping by, and I hope we will see you here again. Thanks for your questions. am glad you told me about your experience with confession and communion. I guess this is one way in which we can find a benefit in going to church to be reminded of what Jesus did for us.
At age nineteen I joined a strict fundamentalist church and stayed there for about eight years. After that I stayed away from church for long time and tried to go back on a few occasions, trying different denominations.
The issue of same sex marriage along with other divisive issues, I mentioned above, did impact me and made it hard to connect with others and continue attending church. Perhaps going to a fundamentalist Pegobry homosexuality in christianity changed me.
It is my view now that there are paradoxes and inconsistencies in life and imperfections in people and chaos in nature. It makes me doubt that we can rely on formal religion as the answer. So that is why I am questioning the role church would play in our lives. The fundamentalist church was very controlling in almost every aspect of my life including what I ate and whether I could work on a Saturday and what holidays to celebrate.
When a church has that much control over your life it makes you wonder where the freedom is in Christ. You must have a great memory for what happens in your classroom. With all the Catholic, Protestant, educational, etc. I do ask students for a lot of information at the beginning of each semester. At the beginning of the course described in my post today, I had students fill out an additional index card each with responses to background questions I ask e.
What is your religious background? Have you ever taken a theology or religion class before? Did you attend a Catholic, Christian, or other religiously affiliated high school?
I also keep the information cards after the course has ended so Pegobry homosexuality in christianity can refresh my memory if "Pegobry homosexuality in christianity" student contacts me four years later for a recommendation.
Thanks for reading today, and we hope to see you again. You have described this perfectly. They push buttons to raise money. We have forgotten just how deep a cultural revolution Christianity wrought by no means full acceptance) of homosexuality than Christianity as. About five years ago, I taught a course called Christian Beliefs at a Catholic university. Pegobry homosexuality in christianity. But as issues like homosexuality, abortion, and freedom of religion become the defining .