Christianity for the Rest of Us

Christianity for the Rest of Us


Anne Rice, Leaving Christianity, and a New Reformation

posted by Diana Butler Bass

This week, best-selling author Anne Rice renounced Christianity on
her Facebook page, “For those who care, and I understand if you don’t:
Today I quit being a Christian. I’m out.” 
She continued:

“I remain
committed to Christ as always but not to being ‘Christian’ or to being part of
Christianity. It’s simply impossible for me to ‘belong’ to this quarrelsome,
hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten years, I’ve
tried. I’ve failed. I’m an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else.”

A few hours later, she followed with a second post:

“As I said
below, I quit being a Christian. I’m out. In the name of Christ, I refuse to be
anti-gay. I refuse to be anti-feminist. I refuse to be anti-artificial birth
control. I refuse to be anti-Democrat. I refuse to be anti-secular humanism. I
refuse to be anti-science. I refuse to be anti-life. In the name of Christ, I
quit Christianity and being Christian. Amen.”

There is much that could be said about Ms. Rice’s spiritual
journey.  Born to an Irish-Catholic
family and attended Catholic schools. 
At 18, she became an atheist.   In 1998, a health crisis caused her to rethink faith
and she returned to the Catholic Church despite her continuing reservations of
the Church’s political and social stances.  She wrote of rediscovering faith in her 2008 memoir, Called Out of Darkness:

In the moment
of surrender, I let go of all the theological or social questions which had
kept me from [God] for countless years. I simply let them go. There was the
sense, profound and wordless, that if He knew everything I did not have to know
everything, and that, in seeking to know everything, I’d been, all of my life,
missing the entire point. No social paradox, no historic disaster, no hideous
record of injustice or misery should keep me from Him. No question of
Scriptural integrity, no torment over the fate of this or that atheist or gay
friend, no worry for those condemned and ostracized by my church or any other
church should stand between me and Him.

Her Facebook posts this week do not substantially differ
from this passage where she separates the person of Christ and God from human
theology and social issues.  In
2008, she wrote that issues could no longer keep her from the reality of
God.  This week, she announced that
theology and social issues would also keep her from Christianity but not
Christ.  Rice is rejecting the
institution of the church–and the larger historical religious phenomenon known
as Christianity.

Rice’s comments have generated both praise and criticism
around the web.  But two things
stand out to me.  First, there’s a
lot of this sort of thing going around right now.  Polls, surveys, and other sorts of research indicate that
increasing numbers of Americans are rejecting organized religion of all sorts
and that the Catholic Church is taking some especially big hits right now with
membership loss (their reported gains are not
true–mostly because they never remove anyone from church rolls).  Not only are people rejecting church,
but there are also rejecting the labels “Christianity,” and “Christian” as Ms.
Rice has done. 

Second, Ms. Rice is rejecting Christianity because it is
illiberal.  For almost four
decades, the standard narrative is that Christianity in the West is dying
because it is too liberal, not conservative enough, not theologically or
ethically demanding.  Rice’s
comment moves in the exact opposite direction.  She’s rejecting the toxic admixture of conservative ideology and Jesus-faith. She has been aching for a faith that is open–and not “anti-”
everything; a faith that demonstrates the love, kindness, and mercy of its
founder, not the “quarrelsome” disputations of Jesus’ all-too-human
followers.   If Anne Rice is any indication,
Americans are hankering for a new sort of liberal faith the actually resembles
that which Jesus taught and embodied. 

There is quite a problem here for churches.  Conservative churches will, as they
have been for several years now, continue to decline as their message of
exclusion fails to address the most pointed questions of the day.  However, the traditionally liberal
churches can’t really grow because they are too caught up in “quarrelsome”
disputations of the very issues that seekers like Ms. Rice want to move
past.  So, sadly enough, there are
very few faith communities where Rice and her like-minded travelers can find
respite from either narrowness or meanness. 

In Christianity for
the Rest of Us
, I wrote of the need to return to authentically liberal
faith:

Once, not so long ago, liberal
was a good word meaning generosity and openness.  It implied a host of positive things: reform, freedom,
toleration, thoughtful inquiry, and lack of prejudice and absence of
bigotry.  Liberal meant opposition
to dogmatism, authoritarianism, inquisition, and theological intolerance.  Historically, religious liberality–theological
generosity–sparked much of the energy, passion, and intellectual liveliness of
American [Christianity].

Well, Anne, I’m with you.  I refuse to be anti-gay, anti-feminist, anti-all-those-other-things.  I reject mean-spirited, stupid arguments.  But I want to change Christianity, not reject it.  It is time for a new reformation–a reformation of generous and open faith–a sort of Christianity that loves God and neighbor as Jesus commanded.



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Comments read comments(148)
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Elaine White

posted July 30, 2010 at 10:11 am


Well said!



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Cindy Bourgeois

posted July 30, 2010 at 10:50 am


You express the exact sentiment I felt as I read Anne Rice’s post. While I respect her right to abandon the institutions of Christianity I am staying because I believe a reformed institution can be a force for transformation in the world. One quibble I have is that I think we need to be more strict to the life and teachings of Jesus, not to attract more members, but to effect the divine transformation that Jesus incarnated.



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Pat

posted July 30, 2010 at 10:58 am


“I want to change Christianity, not reject it.”
This quote sums up my view of Christianity and the Church perfectly. I find that I am wed to both and although at times the relationship can cause much heartache, I long to live for change; the change that I believe is possible. My hope is that Anne can find someplace to call home. Maybe in time….



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Pamela

posted July 30, 2010 at 11:06 am


I have a wonderful relationship with my savior Jesus, but three years ago I walked out of my Church during service and never went back. Not an uncommon thing these days except that the man pastoring that church is my husband. Sad. I’m with Anne. The church was meant to be a sanctuary for the hurting and lost. In reality it’s a battlefield for the proud and pious. I have found more piece out in the world loving and being loved by the people I believe Jesus would walk among.



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Tracie Holladay

posted July 30, 2010 at 11:07 am


You wrote: “But I want to change Christianity, not reject it.”
I don’t even know if “change” is the word. Or maybe “Christianity” is not the right word.
Christianity, it seems to me, has ALWAYS had a “liberal streak” in it. So that doesn’t need to change.
What MUST change is the perception of non-Christian people, that Christians are all anti-abortion, anti-birth control, anti-feminist, anti-science, anti-Democrat or Republican or Tea Partier or Whig or any other political party, etc etc etc.
People need to understand that they cannot stereotype Christians and Christianity just on the bases of a few nutbars like Fred Phelps and Pat Robertson.



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Satchel

posted July 30, 2010 at 11:09 am


I can affirm all of Ms. Rice’s areas of frustration and disappointment, yet I can also theoretically agree with Diana that this should motivate us to change rather than reject Christianity. But after my utter failure to help the (now ex-) pastor of my local Methodist church to alter its “anti” agenda even microscopically, I am now also part of the outsiders group.



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Jason

posted July 30, 2010 at 12:03 pm


Excellent blog post. I am picking up the same gist from Ms. Rice’s statements. She is leaving “Christianity” the organization – really these days – it seems like it’s more correct to call it the conservative political movement. It could be better described as a distinct political ideology called “Conservative American Civil Religion.” It has cut a swath through the Protestant churches and is now starting to infect the Catholicism, to the point at which it often overshadows more traditional forms of Christianity. It’s grown over the past decade, and has reached a fever pitch since the election of Obama by riding the wave social paranoia that event has unleashed. As a result, when various groups such as Barna run the numbers, they find that the moderates and liberals have begun to stream out of churches and the general public’s opinion of Christianity has become increasing negative. One study, pointed out in the book unChristian indicates public at large is more likely to associate Christians with being the people who are anti-homosexual and politically conservative than those who follow teachings of Jesus. The thing about “Conservative American Civil Religion” that irks me the most is how in it moralizing it is very specific about the sins it rails against and how those chosen sins tend to match up rather directly with a conservative political agenda. IE: gay marriage and homosexuality are massive threats to the institution of marriage requiring immediate legislative action, yet heterosexual adultery is bad, but still a private matter best handled quietly. Premarital sex in teens needs to be addressed at the local, state and national level, but somehow spousal abuse does not. Sins concerning matters sexual are the great line in the sand where the Church needs “take a stand,” but sins related to greed and wrath are bad, of course, but still on the backburner for now.



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Joelle

posted July 30, 2010 at 12:18 pm


“He who loves his dream of a community more than the Christian community itself becomes a destroyer of the latter, even though his personal intentions may be ever so honest and earnest and sacrificial”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Yes it’s distressing when Christ’s community doesn’t act like Christians. But there is no such thing as a perfect community and if there were, we would not be allowed in. The answer is not to cut yourself off from the Body of Christ. Jesus never offered us the option to turn our back on the sinners in the community (including the self-righteous and bigoted sinners) and just hang with Jesus. Part of the challenge of following Christ is putting up with all those other sinful followers. I hope Ann realizes that and gets back with the community.



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Michael Russell

posted July 30, 2010 at 1:10 pm


I agree with her creedal statement refusing to be anti- all the things that she lists. As a progressive Christian she and I are right in tune.
But I also refuse to cede the playing field of “Church” to the so called orthodox or conservatives or whatever. There remains much good that the church as a gathered community does and those good people should not have that turf surrendered.
What really saddens me is that despite the indignation expressed in her note there is no proactive action to aim her substantial resources towards reaching out to the broader public. Liberal have high ideals but generally do not put their cash on the line. What allows the conservatives to make so much trouble is that there is not any sort of equal public presence on the other side, just disaffected individuals maintaining a relationship with Jesus.
That is all well and good, but the conservative Christians are moving in the same totalitarian direction as conservative Muslims have. Towards a harsh theocracy. We should not underestimate their capacity to accomplish real havoc if left unopposed.



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Claudia Pearce

posted July 30, 2010 at 1:37 pm


I completely agree – AME-Ordained Professor at Claremont School of Theology, Monica Coleman, is saying the same thing for the Black Church in America – see her piece in Patheos.com: Black Church Walk-Out!



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Susan Church

posted July 30, 2010 at 1:38 pm


It seems to me that Ms. Rice is rejecting “Churchianity” not Christianity. Christianity is about striving to follow Jesus and being transformed by that journey. Churchianity is about striving to confine oneself to the particular enemy list of the day living by purity codes rather than the love code of Jesus.



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Marilyn Gore

posted July 30, 2010 at 2:24 pm


He who the SON sets FREE is free indeed….



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Marilyn Gore

posted July 30, 2010 at 2:25 pm


He who the SON sets free is FREE INDEED!!



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Your Name Michael

posted July 30, 2010 at 3:38 pm


Deeply grateful for Pamela’s gorgeously honest comment. She moved beyond wishful thinking and myopic piety!



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Lauren

posted July 30, 2010 at 4:51 pm


I agree with Susan Church’s commentary on this. It is important to focus on the journey, as Ms. Church said. I like the way she put it, being ‘transformed’ by the Christian journey.
Ms. Rice is making it too much about finding the most perfect orthodoxy. I’ve made that same mistake too. It is a mistake to expect your home faith to fit completely. Perfect orthodoxy is the pursuit of the unhappy perfectionist. It is impossible to find a perfect Church that you can follow in the most orthodox way imaginable – unless you make up its canons all by yourself!
I stay with my Catholic faith because it is my home, I am transformed by the spiritual experience of the Mass, and for many other reasons. However, I long ago gave up the frustrating and pointless pursuit of complete Catholic orthodoxy. I have a hunch God is okay with that too.



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MARTIN S.

posted July 30, 2010 at 4:53 pm


Christianity is NOT the fashion of the day,
the flavor of the month, the spur of the
moment, NOT some club you join or quit.
To use the Name of the LORD, you must
understand what it means to be in HIM,
Of HIM, and for HIM!!
Anything else is just vain!!



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Ed

posted July 30, 2010 at 7:49 pm


Rice enumerated the anti-’s she would not have any part of. But there’s one anti she hasn’t escaped: anti-Christian.



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julie

posted July 30, 2010 at 8:42 pm


I guess what it boils down to is that Ms Rice cannot accept the Bible as the inspired word of God, and it’s unfortunately that way with many people. They don’t want to believe that God would expect us to live in a world and yet not really grasp on to it, but to separate from the things the world would have us choosing or accepting. The Bible tells us clearly we can choose life or choose death, and Christ pointed the way to that very narrow road that actually leads to life. And “few will find it…”



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berkley

posted July 30, 2010 at 9:19 pm


No offense to Ms. Rice (and everyone who feels the way she does), but to put it bluntly, it’s not about her and what she doesn’t like. God through his word, the Bible, has plainly stated what is and what is not to be tolerated by His people. Some things, like homosexuality and abortion, are not even to be considered as normal behavior! I’m sorry if you don’t like it but God made the rules, not you! Abortion is murder and homosexuality is deviant, nasty and filthy! Get it! If you view this as “hate speech” then you really don’t get it! It takes an unbelievable amount of love for someone to be so brutally honest as to take the time to share this. It would be too easy to keep quiet and fly under the radar but that’s not the way to help people see things the way they really are!



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Marian Beddill

posted July 30, 2010 at 10:02 pm


It sounds to me like – from the selected comments and quotations from Ms Rice – that she fits nicely as a UU – a Unitarian Universalist. We have people who have come from almost all faiths (and from none). We have no dogma, but covenant to follow a set of seven principles.
http://www.uua.org/visitors/6798.shtml
Believe in God or not (I believe there is a god.) Care for others, for yourself, and for the earth. Hire your own Minister (or not) – no senior authority tells you who your local leader will be. And more.



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Bob

posted July 30, 2010 at 10:08 pm


I am constantly amazed at some people’s insistence on using the Bible as a whipping tool. I happen to be a pastor in the United Church of Christ and follow the scriptures as a guide to my faith. To see scripture as infallible or inerrant, however, as it appears some responders here do, and use it against Anne is quite insensitive. As I see it, people sometimes seem to worship the Bible more than they do the God revealed in the Bible. The Bible is inspired, yes, but I certainly don’t see the Bible in the same light as the Koran. Muslims believe (which is their right) that Muhammed’s pen was moved by the hand of God to create the Koran. If those who choose to quote the scriptures to bolster their argument, why not at least have some integrity and learn and study the original manuscripts in their original languages. At least Muslims believe the Koran can only correctly be read and understood in Arabic. I’m constantly amazed that there are still people who insist that the English translations (and only certain ones, I might add) are inerrant and infallible. I believe the book I’m now reading hits the nail on the head when it comes to the discussion on this blog. It’s entitled, “If the Church Were Christian”. The author argues that we are too often concerned with right belief rather than following the teachings of Jesus. I too get tired of intolerance. It’s a hard pill to swallow when the church is supposed to be a place of love, acceptance, and a place where people should feel safe enough to ask questions without recrimination. I am saddened to hear that Anne has denounced Christianity, but I completely understand.



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james

posted July 30, 2010 at 11:11 pm


“…mostly because they never remove anyone from church rolls.
Most polls are taken by non-church sources: Pew Research Center, Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, American Religious Identification Survey, Zogby, Gallup Poll, National Opinion Research Center (Chicago University),etc. These polls are based on the witness and statements of the respondents and note that 23.9-24% of the American population reclare themselves Catholic.
Catholic Poll sources like Georgetown University’s Center for Applied Research on the Apostolate use other methods. And Protestant sources like Barna and Yearbook of American and Canadian Churches likewise have their methods. These sources are more specific in noting why the percentage of US Catholics stays the same (owing to conversions and immigration).
Finally, Pew Research has noted that of all the faith groups in the US, only those who were raised as Hindu, Jew, Orthodox, or Mormon are more likely than Catholics to keep their faith as adults (84%, 76,73, 70 percent retention rates respectively). Catholics without Latinos score 68% and with Latinos score 70%. The retention rates are lower for Protestants: 60% for Baptists, 59% for Lutherans, Methodists and Pentecostals both 47%, Episcopalians 45% and Presbyterians 40%.
The group that has gained most are the non-affiliated. In 12 yrs they have jumped from 6% to 15%. I suspect Anne Rice will join this group on “none” group (who respond “none” when asked their religious identity/affiliation).



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Marthajane

posted July 30, 2010 at 11:12 pm


I have felt the same way as Anne Rice for a long time. When I hear the word Christian, I think of people who seem to hate more than love their fellow men and women. My Episcopal church is a big part of my life, but I would never refer to myself as a Christian because I believe that this word now has more negative than positive connotations, especially here in the South,where fundamentalism is prevalent.



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james

posted July 30, 2010 at 11:23 pm


Here is one more interesting tidbit: In a study entitled “Faith in Flux,” issued by Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life last yr, scholars noted that of the nearly 3,000 people questioned, they found that most children raised unaffiliated with a religion later chose to join one. Such is life! So-called “organized religion” is not dead in the US by a long shot.



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Megan

posted July 30, 2010 at 11:24 pm


I recently watched a documentary on Dietrich Bonhoffer and how he left the traditional German Catholic and Protestant Churches (which supported and capitulated, respectively, to Adolph Hitler) to start a new “Confessing” church. Bonhoeffer spoke of cheap grace, which too often in this country is interpretted as not following the Book of Leviticus, but which Bonhoeffer interpreted as not following the Sermon on the Mount. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of cheap grace in this country as well. I liken the state of American Christianity to the passage in II Tim. 3 which describes an abusive and self-worshipping religion, a “form of godliness” that denies the power therein. Paul’s advice to Timothy is brief and to the point: “have nothing to do with them.” In declaring herself not a Christian, this is effectively what Anne Rice has done.



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Ed

posted July 31, 2010 at 12:59 am


In the beginning God created human beings in God’s image. At the end, human beings imagined God in their image. If you don’t like the Christ offered by Christians, invent one! How hard could that be? Just look at the mirror. You’ll be in the great company of “enlightened” heretics and apostates. Hey, you could even take the next step. Persecute those who still call themselves Christians in any way you want (blogging is of course the first step), and make it legal. It should’nt be that hard.



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Cynthia

posted July 31, 2010 at 2:26 am


Too bad she hasn’t discovered the Rev. Mike Endicotts’ teachings at http://www.simplyhealing.org.



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Bill Samuel

posted July 31, 2010 at 7:32 am


I understand her being upset by many professed Christians (so am I), but there are a couple of problems with her response:
1. She is writing off large parts of Christianity by implicitly defining it as just a certain segment that disgusts her. Those that turn her off may be very vocal, but they don’t represent the views of Christians as a whole. And Christianity as a whole seems to me to be moving in a more positive direction.
2. There really is not intended to be any loving of Christ without community with other believers. In the largest sense, that community is “Christianity.” You can be with other believers who see following Christ quite differently from some, but this fellowship is intrinsic to following Christ. See Jesus’ long farewell message in John, for instance.



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Kimball

posted July 31, 2010 at 9:05 am


I am surprised that there are people even taking Rice seriously. She should have stuck to her silly vampire books and not even offered herself as an authority on Christianity. A year or two ago I was in a library and picked up her recent spiritual autobiography. Was going to check it out until I leafed through it for five or ten minutes and saw that it was just pablum.
Seems to me that her wish was to be a cafeteria Catholic and that did not work out for her. At least she had the integrity to leave rather than to remain in the cafeteria queue.



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David Justin Lynch

posted July 31, 2010 at 10:54 am


Why not just invite her to join the Episcopal Church?



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Tony Waldron

posted July 31, 2010 at 11:15 am


I get it, Anne… it makes me sad for both you and for the Church, but I really do get it.
It’s a sad indictment of our faith when the world knows us more for what we stand AGAINST than what we stand FOR.
I also have a deep appreciation for the blog author’s desire for a New Reformation; I pray ardently that this comes to pass and the Church is delivered from the corrupting taint of 21st century Pharisees (of every stripe).
The Church is, according to Scripture, “The Bride of Christ”. So what’s she doing in bed with American politics? If I came home and found my bride-to-be in bed with an elephant and a donkey, I’d be justifiably FURIOUS.



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Dave

posted July 31, 2010 at 11:29 am


Christianity is about Jesus, not Ann Rice. for 2 thousand years people have appeared to have it all figured out. Jesus the God/Man came to redeem, to reconcile our fallen nature with our creator. Grace un-earned by us but, bought by Jesus on the cross. This is the essential truth that needs to be embraced by a fallen world. Our quintessential sin has always been to make ourselves bigger than God. We all do it. Christ is God’s perfect loving answer to this. We need not get caught up in the political/social/cultural fray that surround and infest the central truth. This has always happened and always will. Don’t judge Christianity by the fallen human. Look to Christ out redeemer and know God’s purpose for us and plan for salvation.
She does have good points about what people continue to do in contrary to what Christ would have us do. C.S. Lewis said “Christians are the best argument for AND against Christianity”



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Janie Morris

posted July 31, 2010 at 12:29 pm


Agreed that if there were a theologically perfect church in beliefs and behavior, I probably wouldn’t be eligible to be a member.
However, I find that a community of those who revere our Christian heritage without being shackled by obscure passages whose relevance has long since passed is necessary for my worship experience.
I am pretty much pro-everything, but still find that intolerance is intolerable. Thank goodness there are way more than 31 flavors of Christianity and that I have the right to find one to my liking.



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Linda

posted July 31, 2010 at 12:51 pm


If Anne Rice is for sodomy, women in authority over men in church, abortifcients (The Pill) and abortion as birth control, Marxism (Democrats), and evolution then she is clearly rejecting the Word of God as her authority and is therefore rejecting God. She is not following Christ at all, or at least not Christ of the Bible, but a god of her imagination.



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Alicia

posted July 31, 2010 at 2:30 pm


I’m not sure I would presume to comment on whether or not Anne Rice’s spiritual journey is authentic or not. Can any of us be certain that we are being authentic, or just parroting what we’ve heard from others? But I can definitely relate to feeling like an “outsider” relative to Christianity at this time in my life.
My father was a liberal Lutheran pastor, and I spent the better part of my 20′s and 30′s with religion “on the back burner” – not necessarily an atheist or agnostic but not certain. In my late 30′s and 40′s, I joined a very liberal Episcopal congregation. I took two years of a four year course on religion, Education for Ministry, sponsored by the University of the South at Sewanee. We studied the Old and New Testament intensely, not cover to cover, but nearly cover to cover.
I’ve been taking another break from the church for the past two years or so. And I’ve read some of the new “evangelical” atheists, Harris and Dawkins and Hitchens. At this point, I regard Christianity and all other religions as being about the human quest for God. I do believe religion is human-made, but not in an artificial but rather an organic, evolutionary sense, and I think the religious impulse may be innate.
And, I believe God may well exist, but all religions are at best guesses about the nature of God. Which is why I think we should take millennia-old religious texts and “the rules” a lot less seriously, and take the dignity and beauty of the human quest for God a lot more seriously. If these are documents are seen as a testament to the quest for God, they are wonderful. It they are seen as “written by God, or unchangeable, or divinely inspired” they are absurd forgeries.



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withyobadself

posted July 31, 2010 at 4:43 pm


the people who make a living from churches would disagree with Anne…the people who are afraid to think on their own, would disagree with Anne…the people who have been searching for truth will agree with Annie… Jesus came to free the jews from mans jewish religion…the jews are the chosen people of god…but the few things god told certain jews could have been spread by story or song…the jews decided to make a book and religion to gain power…jesus never said when i die make a religion out of me and call yourself christians…jesus gave only two laws to follow that could have been spread by story or song…have nothing to do with the world and love each other and god…the romans decided to make a book and religion to gain power and now have a vatican city and a trillion dollar tax free business…



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Lois

posted July 31, 2010 at 7:29 pm


The people I know who have actually studied the scriptures (the whole Bible) seriously, not just accepting what people have told them, have come to realize that the the Bible is not just about being against sexual sins and condemning people for that. But rather, it is about Jesus’ commands to give up material goods, to not judge others, but rather welcome others, and to “feed my sheep.” I know that I don’t follow those things as well as I could. My son visited the church of his wife’s family and was appalled that many people had their hands in the air and were calling out praises for getting a new car, etc. That’s just one church, but we hear so much about some groups linking acquiring material good with believing that God has blessed them particularly. I know that I’d be out the door if I experienced that in church.



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Debbie

posted July 31, 2010 at 11:17 pm


We all need to be strong. Fight our battles with different beliefs. But there is one God. And no matter how bad it gets in this world. Never forget that Jesus loves you and what he did for all of us. This world will never be perfect, There is so many things happening all over, Not just in the Church. Thats why we have to learn to Love one another. And get along with others, and stop worrying about who said what about different kinds of religions. As long as you believe and have faith then you can make it in this crazy world. God Bless You All



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praesta

posted August 1, 2010 at 1:59 pm


I sense that Anne Rice and I are exhausted by the endless battle that is Christian self-righteousness. I’m not ready to leave Christianity, but it sure is tempting.
As a gay Roman Catholic who is “celibate” (modern definition), I’m exhausted by fundamentalism. Fundamentalism (which exists in every religion) is motivated only by fear and the desire to control. Everyone knows that. What a lot of people don’t know is the subtle ways in which fundamentalists manipulate others. I belonged to fundamentalist Catholic churches for many years. I was always an untouchable, a less-than person that could be mocked openly because I didn’t speak my presence. I was a “person with homosexual tendencies”, a “same-sex attracted person”, a person who went to Catholic reparative therapy and found it to be thinly veiled emotional abuse. I became a person who was made to feel an outcast for not “changing” something I could, cannot, and shouldn’t change.
I just want someone to allow me to live my faith in fear and trembling. Leave me alone to figure out my own salvation. Also, I’ll treat you like a human if you treat me like one. I know that a lot of people abuse religion to salve the difficulties and heartaches of their own lives. I’d like to help you in your sorrow but you’ve bankrupted me of my compassion. For now, let’s just lay down the verbal abuse and try to worship in charity. If that’s not possible, let’s just coexist.



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Katarina

posted August 2, 2010 at 9:12 am


I am saddened by Anne Rice’s announcement because, in choosing to divorce herself in this manner from Christianity, she is allowing one particular expression of the faith to define the whole faith. We are in an exciting age; Christianity is being practiced in a variety of ways. There is a growing movement that is embracing the Way of the earliest form of Christianity. I maintain that we always remember to follow the two greatest commandments, as “whityobadself” noted above, however, I disagree strongly that this means “have nothing to do with the world”. If you follow the commandment to love your neighbour as yourself, this has serious economic implications. I believe that the Kingdom is to be sought here on this earth. We are to live justly and peacefully. Jesus was a political man because the Way he modeled challenged the power of the day and that is why he engendered such hostility.
I believe that we have a responsibility to model a loving Christianity that is committed to justice and peace and following in the footsteps of Jesus. In so doing, every encounter we make with people who have equated Christianity with bigotry, will give them pause to reconsider this view.



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withyobadself

posted August 2, 2010 at 6:49 pm


Katrina…the world is giving to Lucifer…Jesus was against religion…man makes religion which means Lucifer made all religion…god spoke to certain jews and only told the jews a few things that could have been spread by story or song…jews decided to start religion to gain power…the moment before you die you will be thinking about people you love and god… not politics…not things in this world…children of god should stay out of politics…welcome your death you will be with god…while you are here nothing else matters but to love eachother like you love your family…and learn to trust god.



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Bill

posted August 3, 2010 at 10:22 am


2Ti 3:6 “For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,
2Ti 3:7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” FYI, G-d is not anti-gay. He is anti-sin and homosexuality is a sin as it is clearly stated in G-d’s word. God hates the sin, BUT, he loves the sinner and he sent his son to offer all of us, no matter what our particular sin(s)are, an avenue of reconciliation and salvation but we must confess and repent.



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Nixon is Lord

posted August 3, 2010 at 3:19 pm


If the Mainline protestants are so welcoming and open and tolerant, why do they lose so many members?
If you want to join political causes, why bother getting up early on Sunday and paying to listen to someone talk about things nobody could possibly prove? Just become more active politically.
Mainline protestantism is dealing now with the aftereffects of its complacency and self-absorbed “boutique” lifestyle causes. It was never a group of churches of the poor, but thought it could stay relevant by preaching about the poor-from groups about as “diverse” as sour cream.
Why should people take religion seriously? With a median age of over 55, it will soon be even less relevant than today.



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Flammer

posted August 3, 2010 at 3:48 pm


bill must be an ignorant backwards hillbilly from the bible belt. God created people gay just like god created you



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wild7flower

posted August 4, 2010 at 3:36 pm


Ann Rice is making a decisive stand as Martin Luther did towards the Catholic church. As believers we are comfortable in our pews and if we have been there any length of time we begin to see that is where we want to stay. We are entertained by the suffering of others but we have not stepped from our pews, to engage and be there. But we can casually sit there and judge and condescend. The church body has become a marketplace as was the temple in the days of Jesus’ human incarnation.



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Althea

posted August 6, 2010 at 4:29 pm


Doesn’t matter what part of the country Bill is from, what he’s saying is correct. God loves the sinner but does hate sin. The word says He created them male & female not straight & gay. If you really want to know how he feels about homosexualty read Rom 1:24-28 doesn’t even matter which translation.
I also agree that it is not necessary to be anti anything. I do believe sometimes people are confused about religion. I grew up religous but unsaved. I did not understand being a Christian meant having a personal relationship with Christ. Church membership & traditions are not going cut it. It is in having a relationship with Christ that changes you and causes you to want to live a life that pleases God, that comes with spending time alone with Him and reading His word. The love of Christ is to be shed abroad thru believers and helps you to walk in love even when others don’t. For the people who think that means agreeing with everything, think again. There is a such thing as right and wrong or there would be no need for repentence Matt 4:17. Several sciptures quote Jesus telling someone their sins where forgiven or go and sin no more. However, you can disagree with someone and still love them. Jesus was always loving but also stood for what is right. Once the religous leader asked Him a question, He responded with a question and when they would not answer because they were afraid, He told them neither would He answer them Matt 21:23-27. He also called them a brood of vipers (venomous snake) Matt 12:34.
He did the Martin on the money changers in the temple, He threw people out! John 2:13-16 Jesus loved the Father above all and put God first in every area of His life.



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Carol Anne Thomas

posted August 8, 2010 at 3:52 am


I do understand Anne Rice’s comment in regard to organized churches. I also realize that the Lord Himself realized the problem with organized churches & He came to remedy this problem. He is the beginning & the end. Seems like this author loves to write & speak out & has done so in regard to her very personal journey & walk with Jesus Christ. As to her permissive attitude toward sinners it could be for a number of reasons. She may have a gay relative who believes they were born that way & does not ackonwledge his or her own sin, she may love the sinner & hate the sin, only the Lord knows our heart. The Holy Spirit is the one who convinces us of sin & also pours out miraculous power to give us new life & freedom to choose to walk away from sin….this does not mean we stop sinning all the time & never make a mistake because sometimes we do.



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maurice petertuger

posted August 8, 2010 at 4:35 am


Althea your ignorance speaks for itself.



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geoge t bootytxt

posted August 8, 2010 at 7:12 pm


carl ann thomas. some people are better and denying the temptation to judge others. oh yeah thats right someone created a loop hole and calls it love the sinner hate the sin. christians are one of the most evil people



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clay

posted August 9, 2010 at 10:29 pm


I couldn’t agree with Ann Rice more that we as Christians need to speak out against the hurt and pain that is inflicted upon people and especially young people from those in authority within the organized church.
It is not belonging to some Christian denomination that has meaning to God but rather being followers of Jesus Christ and his teaching. True Christianity is about having a deep and meaningful relationship with Jesus Christ and realize that He truly lives within each of us who fully surrender to Him.
In that relationship we will be lead to love all people even though we may not approve what they may do. The message of Jesus Christ is very revolutionary even in todays life and sadly to often flies in the face of organized Christianity.
Good for Ann Rice to have the guts to speak up against the shame and hurt inflicted on young people in the denomination she was associated with. I applaud her for that.
As Diana Bass pointed out, conservative critical churches are loosing members and I say Praise God!
May the pure message of Jesus Christ take over in all the churches who call themselves Christians.



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Donna Ballard

posted August 10, 2010 at 9:09 am


To me ,I believe we ave to embrace the church.The bible clearly states that Christ loved the Church.Even with all its flaws it is still loved by christ and if we want to embrace HIM and call ourselves Christian thay means we are apart of the Church.I too have come to realize in my walk of Faith that our Father in Heaven does not need us to clean each other up.What can wash away our sins ? Nothing but The Blood of Jesus.God did not need anyone to save Paul on the road to Damascus He sent His precious Holy spirit,also no one can come to The Father unless THe spirit draws him.today He is The same Heavenly Father and His Spirit still has The same drawing Power to bring sinners to repentence.If we as christians followers of The Word do what we can and let The spirit do as He wills we would have a beautiful Church.We are suppose to love The Lord our God with all our heart soul and mind and love our neighbors as we love ourselves.I also have found out in my own personal marriage of 40 years[Oh my God i have lived through the wilderness]that even today we do not think exactly the same on issues but the thing that holds us together is LOVE,this is why I believe as christians we are in a marriage with Jesus and in marriages thier are children,We love them unconditionally and pray that Jesus saves protects and guards them,We need to do this also everyone.When we start focusing on these issues instead of tactics[devices that the enemy uses to divide] that pull us away from this we will see THe Church grow as GOD intended it to and oh what POWER THE CHURCH would have on this earth to make a difference for OUR HEAVENLY FATHER. thanks for a chance to offer my heart Dona



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clay

posted August 10, 2010 at 9:59 am


I agree with Donna that Christ loves the church and gave his life for it but the church is simply a body of believers who love one another and who seek to live their life resting in Jesus Christ and partnering with the Holy Spirit in the work of sharing the message of God’s love and salvation to the world.
The church as I believe it, is not the various organized denominations who so often build up walls to keep them distinct from other churches. As Paul said in Rom. 9,”it is not the natural descendants who are the true children of Abraham but those who have the faith of Abraham”. In other words, it is not the various Christian denominations and those who attend them, that are “His Church”, but all those who have surrendered their life to Jesus Christ and have an deep relationship of faith in Him and who allow the Holy Spirit to use them to share the message of Christ to the world. This is the church that God calls his bride. Organized denominations are all man-made and too often (but not always) are involved in their own “kingdom building”
The Holy Spirit is able to unite the followers of Jesus together in powerful ways if we are open to His leading. Jesus is the cornerstone of His church and as his followers allow Him to direct them, the outcome will be unity among believers and a passionate love for all mankind.
I believe it is beginning to happen and I praise God for it.



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BlessedandHighlyFavored

posted August 10, 2010 at 10:26 am


I agree with Ann Rice and many of the posts. We are not to judge because His word say in Matthew, “judge not, lest you be judge…”. We cannot change anybody all we can do is change ourselves for the better. His Word also states to “let the wheat and the tear grow together and when He comes, He will do the separating”. As Clay stated earlier, we may not agree with someones lifestyle but we need to love them, just as Christ has loved us.



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clay

posted August 10, 2010 at 10:35 am


I can see that George t, from the Aug 8 post , has been hurt by so called Christians. There would be no other reason to lash out that way. I am sorry for you George, but I realize it has happened too many times.
However, please don’t judge the Christian religion too quickly until you look seriously at the teachings of Jesus Christ in the New Testament. When I say look seriously at them I mean not to find fault but to really understand what Jesus was saying and you might be suprised.
There are lots of loving followers of Jesus Christ out there who are a pleasure to know and work along side.
They may not even be attending an organized church but they are committed followers of Jesus and seek to exemplify His teaching in their life as well as trust that He is living within them by His Holy Spirit.
These are the members of His true church.



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withyobadself

posted August 10, 2010 at 11:13 am


donna…god doesnt need anyones help to change the world…thats an excuse the higher ups or ceo of the religion corporations make to be involed in the world and recieve all the power the world offeres…this world is giving to lucifer…donna you are the typical christian who has been afriad to search for truth on your own…everyone must search for truth…religion does more harm then good…jesus was against religion…



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clay

posted August 10, 2010 at 6:50 pm


Yes donna doesn’t need anyone but the Holy Spirit to change the world. I agree that Jesus was against religion as it was then and probably as it is today. It is the message of Jesus lived out in the believers life that will make an impact in the world.
Read a good book – “The end of Religion” by Bruxy Cavey This is a powerful little book that really opens one’s eyes to organized religion. A great read.



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Susanne Stadlbauer

posted August 11, 2010 at 2:26 pm


I am so glad I read this blog because I think Christianity is the most wonderful thing that happened to me and could happen to anybody, if it interpreted like Jesus intended it. I am with you all claiming it back!!!!!



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Awilda

posted August 12, 2010 at 6:58 am


Who is Anne Rice ? I know Christ but not her.



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Donna Ballard

posted August 12, 2010 at 9:58 am


Good Morning everyone,I find it very interesting everyone is quick to offer an opinion but none use their name they hide behind a keyboard.We do not have to fight over THE WORD OF GOD.It is the way to Salvation it is our road map to heaven.Jesus is the way,the only way to THE FATHER is by JESUS CHRIST HIS SON,Everyone has to come this way.Also in Matthew 13 he refers to wheat and tares together,THE HOLY SPIRIT showed me one day it is better to go to Church with a few hipocrites then to spend enternity with all hipocrites.Anywhere you go there will be darkness but the light of JESUS shining through you will be seen and put out the darkness.We all need to pray daily read THE BIBLE and let our light shine so all the world can see and hopefully put out most of the darkness.Thanks Donna



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william strecheds

posted August 12, 2010 at 1:56 pm


typical tea bagger. not very bright and doesn’t like a black president.



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Elizabeth

posted August 13, 2010 at 8:25 pm


We are beyond attempts at reformation at this point.
Scholars for a long time have noted we are in a post-Christian era. It’s just now becoming apparent to many, that this is true.
You can’t reform it. Look at the last attempt? It did not but create split after split after split after split. Denomination after denomination after sect after non-denominations. Nothing but division, self-righteousness (we are the RIGHT ones!) and rancor.
That does not come from God. It comes from Religion, which is man made and has little to nothing to do with true spirituality.
You can’t put new wine into old wines skins, as a wise itinerant preacher said 2,000 years ago.
Forget reform. It’s a child’s dream. It’s time for grown up spirituality now, sans control of hierarchies and dogma.
Reform is futile. It won’t happen. How much do you have to see, how many centuries of “reform” before you get it?



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Perry Johnston

posted August 13, 2010 at 8:31 pm


Ms. Rice, I agree with everything you’ve said about organized religion, and will go one step further and say that there probably isn’t a God that resembles the description from the Bible. If there is a supreme being, we have no idea what he looks like, wants, or does. As an adult I freed myself from the confusion of religion and have been at peace with myself ever since, But I did come away from it with” The Golden Rule” “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. To me thats the most important ingredient necessary to insure the survival of the human race. It’s becoming more and more evident that religion will be the cause of our extinction. It’s ironic that religion invented The Golden Rule and here I am an atheist, and I give it more importance than those who are supposed to live by it. I also think that as religion continues to try to take over our political system that we could end up with a country like Iraq, their political system is controlled by their religion. Some people might think that might be a good thing, but it scares the hell out of me.



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Kathleen

posted August 13, 2010 at 9:47 pm


Christains are absurd to believe that only their religion will provide salvation. The bible is not the answer to all faiths. Every religion has a book or text that is respected as the bible is.



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withyobadself

posted August 13, 2010 at 10:23 pm


Elizabeth there are real angels that are alive now…you are one…there’s going to be a war with the space people…the space people are really Lucifer and his fallen angels…look up raelian on your computer…



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Lynne

posted August 14, 2010 at 12:24 am


I’ve also tried and failed on several occasions, in the conservative and liberal versions of both Roman Catholic and Protestant churches, to be a part of what’s called “the Church” by human beings. I’ve walked away from church, and thought I had to walk away from Jesus.
That’s an error, if not an outright lie.
Even the Bible itself warns that most of us are going to get it completely wrong — unless we are willing to follow Jesus, and not each other, not ourselves. The Bible itself tells us that most people who say they are God’s People will even go so far as doing God’s work — and still not have Jesus’ heart.
It’s still possible to be a Christian, and not be the anti’s. It’s still possible to get it right, and actually be a good thing in the world, and not just another spout for evil. But the trick is to stick with Jesus, just as Anne Rice and so many of us are now learning each day.
Good for you, Anne! You’re on the narrow path. And that’s a good thing!



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jb hulaho

posted August 14, 2010 at 1:58 am


typical shallow minded tea bagger who doesnt like a black president



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Doug Sloan

posted August 14, 2010 at 9:13 am


(excerpted from RECLAIMING CHURCH by Doug Sloan)
http://dmergent.org/2010/06/03/reclaiming-church/
How many of us have seen or participated in placing a hand on the wall of the sanctuary and then saying, “This is not the church.” With this act, we are trying to illustrate that it is the people of our faith community who are the church and not the building. Do we have any idea what we just said? If the building is not the church, why do we spend so much time and effort dealing with it? If the building is not the church, why is it so important to us? After we have said, “This is not the church,” have we ever taken a far look in the direction we just pointed? What happens when we extend that thought?
What do capital campaigns and 6- or 7- or 8-digit mortgages (or any mortgage amount) and sanctuaries with high vaulted ceilings and proper acoustic resonance and stained glass windows and basketball courts and dining halls and sculpted altars and carved pulpits and custom-built communion tables and decorative carpet and imported floor tiles and plentiful paved parking lots and meticulously manicured gardens have to do with living and sharing the Good News? – Nothing.
What do fund raisers and all the accompanying effort and bother and time and finding and organizing the required workers have to do with living and sharing the Good News? – Nothing.
What do praise bands and church orchestras and bell choirs and octaves of tuned bells and multi-rank pipe organs and grand pianos and synthesizers and adult choirs and children choirs and choir auditions and choir robes and music folders and the search and review and selection analysis and purchase of new music and multi-line PA systems and multi-screen video systems and live broadcasts and recorded broadcasts and hours of rehearsal time and church bulletins and church bulletin art work and church bulletin paper and designer fonts and newsletters and mailing lists and advertising and advertising placement and multi-media web sites and visits by unique IP addresses and the use of and the presence on new media have to do with living and sharing the Good News? – Nothing.
What do membership drives and attendance numbers and baptism numbers and tithing and bequeaths and endowments and liturgical employees and non-liturgical employees and salaries and benefits and committees and committee meetings and church boards and church board meetings and the consequential and unavoidable church politics have to do with living and sharing the Good News? – Nothing.
Much of what we call successful Christianity and successful worship and successful congregations has nothing to do with living and sharing the Good News.
Once we begin to think of our faith in terms of largeness instead of largess or in terms of measurable success or significant achievements or community stature or statistically significant gains or business models or congregational models or appropriate budget processes or cash flow direction or generally accepted accounting practices or independent audits or administrative requirements or managerial transparency or proper leadership roles and boundaries or membership trends or effective organizational structures or a current and accurate vision statement – at that point, we have become the money changers – we have lost our faith and deserve to be driven away for we are neither living nor sharing the Good News.
What would happen if the church universal – every congregational property, every regional office, every national office, every seminary, every camp – was sold and the net proceeds were used to establish a trust fund endowment to support nutritional, medical, legal, and educational services for the poor, the lost, and the hurt?
When you want a new status quo – a status quo different than the current status quo – you are asking for revolution. When you desire radical transformation – you are asking for revolution. When you are tired of capital campaigns for more structural imagery; nauseated by controversy over who is fit to be a church member, deacon, or elder; repulsed by the aggregation and protection of authority that defines narrow rigid paths to ordination; grievously hurt by the abandonment and refusal to acknowledge congregations who dare to be excited by their proclaiming and living the Good News; or sick of choosing better organization over better outreach – you are asking for revolution.
“Doing” has to be the new definition of faith. A “new definition” will not be statements of purpose/mission/vision or political participation or public stances on issues or styles of worship. It will be specific activities; specific ways of living that are the new definition. Participating in CODA or LifeLine or Habitat for Humanity will not be an outreach activity; it will be what we do and definitive of who we are. Supporting a free clinic or a food pantry or a shelter for the homeless will not be the focus of an annual fund-raising event; it will be part of our continuously active and visible theological and spiritual DNA. Worship will not be every Sunday morning – it will be whenever and wherever 2 or 3 (not 200 or 300, not 2,000 or 3,000, not 20,000 or 30,000) are gathered to live, study, and contemplate the Good News. Indeed, “doing” will be about living and being the Good News, not scheduling it as a repetitive activity on our digital calendar on the same day at the same time that always occurs at the same location and always follows the same sequence. “Doing” our faith does not require capital campaigns; local, regional, or national governing boards; seminaries; or licensing/ordination policies.
“Doing” our faith has to be seen as a radical, counter-cultural, defiant way of living. By its very nature, our faith is not supposed to be institutionalized and not measured by largeness, cultural pervasiveness, or authoritarianism. Our faith is supposed to be personal and divinely humane. Our faithful doing is to be delivered person-to-person, face-to-face, one-to-one – not by an invisible faceless remote committee or collective. “Doing” our faith can be accomplished only with more personal involvement and not with more technology that is better, more pervasive, more invasive, and increasingly remote and detached.
Congregations should be small groups meeting for worship in the homes of different members. Just imagine: Church with no offerings, no church governing boards and no board meetings, no committees and no committee meetings, no rehearsals, no fund raisers, no capital campaigns, no finances, no buildings, no property, no maintenance or repairs or replacements, no employees, no membership drives. Just imagine: Church as only worship, only studying, only witnessing in word and service to each other and the world.



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Your Name

posted August 14, 2010 at 11:40 am


Anne Rice can’t follow Christ when she doesn’t believe-support his word. Its totally contradictory and it makes her a hypocrite. We’re supposed to believe Gods word in its entirety. Picking and choosing what you agree or don’t agree with doesn’t work. As Christians, we don’t have to support-agree with a certain lifestyle that is against our beliefs, but we should never hate the person because they’re different. We push people away with hate. The only way we’re ever going to lead anyone down the right road is by showing them love, unconditional love, even if we don’t support them. We can hate the actions, but we should never hate the person. And by loving the person, despite there actions, Christ will truely shine through us. We must love and find common ground with people first. And instead of forcing and hating our beliefs upon someone, we should encourage in a bold, loving and peaceful manner. As Christ handled himself…. And if that person still remains lost, so be it. We all have free will and we will all have to face judgement in the end. But, we must remember, If its Gods will, surely it will be taken care of. Christ loves everyone, but he doesn’t love the sin that consumes our lives.
Anne Rice leaving the “Christian religion” is a pathetic excuse for going back to old habbits. Like that saying goes, “Old habbits die hard.” If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, Hewbrews 10:26
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. Matthew 7:13 James 1:5-8 “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.”
Rev. 3:16 “So then because thou art luke warm, and neither cold nor hot,I will spew thee out of my mouth.”



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My Broken Heart

posted August 14, 2010 at 11:54 am


Fine move on Anne’s part. I’ve been disenchanted with the church for quite some time.



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Becki

posted August 14, 2010 at 1:42 pm


I always appreciate it when someone articulates something that I feel but am unable to articulate myslef. Thank you Diana and thank you Anne.



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ben

posted August 14, 2010 at 8:36 pm


you can feel god anywere. people in churches are feeling eachother,mostly bad feelings.envy, lust, greed,superior,



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Chelee

posted August 14, 2010 at 10:40 pm


I was fortunate to be raised Presbyterian (USA). One of the basic tenets is the understanding that we as humans are not equal to God and therefore are not capable of knowing the full heart, mind and soul of God. Thus, it is our charge to read the Bible with an open mind and an open heart and let God/Jesus speak to each of us on a level at which we can understand. So to me the notion that any other human being would be so arrogant as to claim to know the heart, mind, and soul of God just because s/he can read the Bible is beyond hubris, beyond self-righteousness.
If I don’t understand a passage right now, then as far as I’m concerned it’s not designed to meet my current spiritual needs and it may never be relevant to my personal spiritual needs. Like Anne Rice and so many others who have left the church as have I, I still trust the Lord to lead me in the paths of righteousness. And what He calls me to do is between Him and me. “Christianity” doesn’t have the necessary “credentials” or “security clearance.” Maybe if they let Jesus live through them and focused on those words in red, we could create a heaven on this earth.
Notice the anti-Christs. Notice how they avoid using those words in red … the words of love, compassion, and assurance. Instead they use words to attempt to control by fear. Jesus never frightened anyone. And the judgments they cast like stones, in His Own Words they have done it unto Him. Is that not the behavior one would expect from an anti-Christ?



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Brian

posted August 16, 2010 at 2:26 pm


Who cares if someone who writes “vampire” books believes x or y? Why the big deal. Stupid books…stupid media for hying the author’s importance.
Oh yes “Liberal” once had good connotations until it became obvious that many of its leaders lacked common sense. Yet “Conservative” has often meant in the real world “heartless”.
Unfortunately trying to find the Middle Way is tough in a world full of Tiger Sharks and where everything is so interconnected because of over population and technology. A world where so many let others define what they are …where media helps followers become sheeple rather than people deciding their own destiny to the extent possible.
I wish I had a dollar for every person who decided they were gay because of lack of success with the opposite sex or inability to live up to someone else’s ideals of manhood and woman hood. Or a dollar for every “biker” who loved the way the media treated the biker image so went out and procured his Harley. A dollar for every Christian or Hindu or Muslim who declares himself thus without ever bothering to think, meditate, fel uppon what they say they believe.Or in this case every woman or man who thinks they agree with Anne Rice because they are too shallow to think thru or to fearful to live thru the ideas and events that really show us what we have inside. Or disagree with Anne Rice because of a “knee-jerk” mental reaction without really understanding what she has been thru or means. In other words…why care or pretend you do when you do not even know yourself? ?
A good writer but terrible author declares she no longer uses ketchup….or Steven King, a not so good writer but great author declares himself the “Big Mac and fries” of the literary menu…what is the big deal? I would worry a little more if I liked to worry about stuff like our trillion, bazillion dollar deficit, or Iran getting ready to nuke Israel, or all the germinating gangstas and dope fiends we are producing and are all responsible for…those are things our children and theirs will have to contend with. But I am not a worrier.
Alfred E Newman



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steve

posted August 16, 2010 at 7:42 pm


who cares what you write,your a dumbass looking for attention. ffind jesus cause your going to hell. bring knee pads satan has a job for you



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Deacon John M. Bresnahan

posted August 16, 2010 at 7:57 pm


Two points–Please drop the lie about the Catholic Church padding its membership. In our parish we are very regularly culling and also adding. Also, REGULARLY the Gallup Poll shows more people claiming to be Catholic than the Catholic Church does. The latest I got after googling was the Church claims that 22.6% of the U.S. population is Catholic while Gallup–based on almost 200,000 phone surveys says 23%–another poll says 24%.
And just because some people are brainwashed by liberal ideology doesn’t make it the truth. To try to set someone morally straight believing that is best for the person and best for society is not an act of hate, but of LOVE.



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clay

posted August 16, 2010 at 11:35 pm


As I read the comments in this blog, I hear people who are very angry with the church and God, and those who claim to be Christians who are very caustic and judgemental in their comments. Then there are those who really “know” Jesus Christ” and are seeking to let Him live in them and through them. The tenor of their message is kind and gentle except when addressing the Pharisees of present day Christianity. That is exactly how Jesus was.
It saddens me to hear the anger in the writing of some on this blog as I know they have had some very hurtful experiences either with Christians or in the Christian church. God understands their anger and pain and loves them in spite of the angry words they lash out with.
Once you have experienced God and heard Him speak to you, you will never again question His existence nor His love. He still speaks to those hungry to hear and follow Him. These people are found in ALL Christian denominations including Catholic but they usually don’t go around talking about it to people unless the people are seriously interested in knowing God. As I have said in earlier blog posts, true Christianity is about a deep and meaningful relationship with Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit , and the Father. A relationship so deep and wonderful that it becomes the most important experience in your life.



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bb dg

posted August 17, 2010 at 12:31 am


the reason for a penis is to reproduce so does that mean jesus didnt have a penis cause he didnt reproduce? everyone masterbates. did jesus masterbate? did jesus have sexually fantasies the way men who are not gay do. was jesus gay? didnt jesus feel he needed a woman



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rev. mans

posted August 17, 2010 at 1:06 am


deacon john. Im glad god has put you in charge of getting rid of the bad people. People like us are the better americans. the banks and corporations need our help. Vote republican to keep the rich in power.white power.



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Donna Ballard

posted August 17, 2010 at 12:29 pm


The Physical aspects of all body structures serve a purpose.If you study the anatomy and the physiology of the body you would learn this. the penis is not only a sexual organ,its main purpose is an outlet for the urinary system which is a vital bodily function.And obviously you do not know My Lord ans Saviour Jesus Christ,because He did reproduce.I am a living testament of his reproducing power of HIS preivous BlOOD.First of all He is GOD SON HE IS NOT ON THE LEVEL of you me or anyone else.HE came in bodily form so they we may see know and feel HIS LOVE and PRESENSE on this earth.Also that we may know our Heavenly father through HIM.I feel sorry for you because you have been blinded by the enemy of this world and I pray GOD reveals HIMSELF to you like HE did to Paul on the road to Damascus.Always remember John 3:16 For GOD so loved the world[thats you and me]that HE gave HIS only SON[JESUS]that whosoever [you and me]believeth in HIM[JESUS] would not perish[live an eternity without GOD ]but have everlasting {live an eternity with GOD] life. GOD loves you and me … Jesus does too. Donna Ballard



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bb dg

posted August 17, 2010 at 7:39 pm


donna do you love me?



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bb dg

posted August 18, 2010 at 3:49 am


DONNA, SOUNDS LIKE YOU MAY HAVE A SEVERE CASE OF PENIS ENVY



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withyobadself

posted August 19, 2010 at 8:52 am


donna…the enemy of the world is religion…christian have killed more people in this world then musliums…all religion was created by lucifer…christians hurt more than love…this is why god will allow lucifer to hurt christians and all others who act as evil as christians…there is nothing good about christians…look at all the sponsers on this website giving money to people using god for profit…love comes from people not religion…



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frank

posted August 22, 2010 at 10:06 am


all of you are SINNERS!!!!!!



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Debi

posted August 22, 2010 at 11:52 am


When I was little I was taken to church to learn about God.
I was told that Jesus loved all children at first.I was chastised
for announcing in sunday school that it was genetically
impossible for Adam and Eve to have populated this planet.
My mother was fascinated with science but insisted the bible
was the truth.Not long after I was told that when cain had
killed his brother he left and found a wife .Of course again I
questioned this.My mother said I could not .My father told me he got this wife in the valley of Nodd and that she was one of the unchosen
people .I asked if God created the world and all things on it
why would there be unchosen?If you haven’t figured it out yet
by the time I was ten I turned away from the inconsistencies
and lack of satisfactory clarifications from those who taught
only what was convenient.I am not a christian but I have found
my peace in being a pagan.I believe in the ultimate EL[ALL] and
the great Mother with whom I will always be simply by going outside
and looking at her.I have read the teachings of many religions
and find somethings right for me in each.All are just a guide
along the way to yourself and the peace we all seek.I am still
learning and loving it and all of you for the roads we walk.peace to all.Do accept that we are all children in school.



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Ruth Stone

posted August 25, 2010 at 6:34 am


IBELIEVE. Long ago MartinLuther said we should read the Bible and know what God truly wants.The trouble with most people is that they listen to priests and pastors and think they know better than what our heart tells us.All religions as far as I know preach what Jesus said “Love thy neighbor” We should follow this and do good to others and be helpful. God must be judging us as we are having more natural disasters and problems with our economy.We must let go and let God.May god bless you all!



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pat grimm

posted August 25, 2010 at 8:25 am


The current Christian Church has very little in common with what it was when the Lord presented it to us. Christianity today is judgmental, political, and does not allow free flowing discussion of the Lord’s word, much like the Roman church of yesteryear and today. There is someone standing in the middle of you and the Lord, “translating” the Word. Today’s Christian churches are concerned with silly slogans like “family values” are anti gay, anti abortion and condemn those who are not EXACTLY like them. Did Jesus ever condemn anyone? WE are all sinners, the Christians of today believe that they are sinless for the most part and that is a fantasy. No one is righteous but Jesus, this groups assess itself as holy, none are holy but Jesus. Therefore, when they condemn homosexuals, yet have no mercy on them, they condemn abortion, yet have no mercy on those who have them. They look on the surface of God’s Word and not it’s real meaning. The Lord has a plan for His people, and it is not for petty, self righteous bigots, but those who love like Jesus does. I agree with Ann Rice, I’m out. Jesus is the way, not a building filled with self righteousness.



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roman scapegoat

posted August 25, 2010 at 8:47 am


why do preachers have big houses, cars, land, lots of money. churches are tax free businesses.



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rainbow in bathroom stall

posted August 26, 2010 at 9:37 am


what jesus taught is put on the back burner while christian agenda is taught to give those in power wealth



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clay

posted August 27, 2010 at 10:09 am


I have to agree with Pat that much of what the church practices and teaches is not what Jesus intended. There is huge room for improvement but as defective as it is it is still God’s church and all who see the errors in it need to work under the leading of the Holy Spirit to make changes within that must happen.
I don’t think leaving the church is the answer unless a particular church or denomination has moved so far away from God’s plan that it cannot be restored. This may be the case in some instances but there are many churches that simply need people to speak up when they see things that are hurtful and foreign to God’s plan. If that church is not willing to hear and make the changes than leave. As Jesus told the disciples when they were not welcome in a town, “Shake the dust off and move on”.
There needs to be a ground swell movement of laypeople and clergy moving in unison to try and bring changes in Gods wayward church.
We need always to remember though that it is our personal relationship with Jesus Christ that should be our major concern. God is a personal God and deals with each individual in a unique way. Keep our eyes on Jesus and you will not go wrong.
Sure there are clergy who have big houses and cars etc but there are thousands who live simply and humbly and are serving God with pure hearts. If your pastor is not one of those people, leave and find a different church to attend but keep your personal time with God #1.



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roman scapegoat

posted August 27, 2010 at 4:50 pm


god is with you at all times just talk to him. churches are more social club types that’s a tax free business that when it has huge numbers can give the few great power and wealth of the world giving to Lucifer



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Elijah

posted August 28, 2010 at 12:50 pm


Sorry, but Anne Rice should make the Fully True and Bold statement
that she is quitting the ROMAN SATANIC CATHOLIC FALSE CHURCH, referred to
as The Whore of Babylon, dressed in Crimson and Purple.
ALL of y’all posting here ought to get a nice new copy of “The Great Controversy”,
by Ellen G. White.
Rome was and is and shall be –WRONG– about demanding any obedience, claiming any authority,
and enforcing and rules on Anybody.
Do you Know any Catholics?
Do they even Have a BIBLE?
I know a real helpful worker-guy, he has helped me a lot, but he is a STUPID German Catholic.
He cares more about WEARING A TIE TO “CHURCH” than helping his kids with their struggle
for the Spiritual Truth.
Anne Rice was raised in Vampire-Zombie-Spanish Inquisition- Voodoo Latino CATHOLICISM.
Any body still claiming this as a Church of Jesus Christ, we are very Sorry for you, you are
following the FALSE church.
Watch Now, as the Government creates One World Catholic Church, with ENFORCED SUNDAY.
Hail Obama, Prince of Darkness– NOT!



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clay

posted August 28, 2010 at 5:27 pm


Elijah, you obviously are an Seventh-day-adventist by quoting EGWhite, and you need to be ashamed of the way you speak of other faiths. If you really knew Jesus and walked with him you wouldn’t speak the way you do.
Yes I know devout Catholics who have a bible, love Jesus and also love their fellow man, and probably read it probably more than you do.
Your writing is filled with extreme hatred by the words you use. I can only feel sorry for you for you think you walk in the light but it is obvious you are still in darkness.



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Egbert Sales

posted August 28, 2010 at 10:16 pm


Well, I agree with you.
But in it’s truest sense, the Catholic Church needs reformation. It must turn away from her sins. But just the same, she can only do this if the people composing her turns away from sin as well.
People cannot nail the church of the sins they are willing to do. If we think the Church is a bigot, then we too are bigots for not considering her argument. Granting the she is bullying the faithful to submission, aren’t we bullying her as well.
We can only look at the Magdalene episode. The people condemning the Church must be clean, very clean to cast the stone.
It’s not a matter of abandoning the Church because of differences of opinion, but rather it is the matter of listening. Yes conscience has its doing, but the Church has her conscience as well to do what is God’s will, even though people would not understand.
This is reason for reformation, a reformation of the Church and her people.
Egbert



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roman scapegoat

posted August 28, 2010 at 10:16 pm


Catholic priest keep child porn between the pages of their bibles and no one cares!!!



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roman scapegoat

posted August 28, 2010 at 10:21 pm


egbert your a dumbass you dont understand what people are talking about go to one of your tea bag movements



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smith

posted August 29, 2010 at 7:01 am


Egbert, your last name says it all.



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roman scapegoat

posted August 29, 2010 at 7:20 am


jesus message was god never left you. jesus died on the cross to show let your enemy kill you. religion says god left and you have to follow religion to have god come back to you. religion is evil. god never stopped walking with man. just talk to him



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roman scapegoat

posted August 29, 2010 at 7:32 am


Jesus DID NOT die so that if you believe in Christianity you can have a relationship with god. Jesus message was god never stopped walking with man, all you need to do is just talk to him. Christians today would kill Jesus if money and power were threaten to be taken away! all religion is made by man………



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Nancy

posted August 31, 2010 at 12:06 pm


I don’t look at Christianity as a religion people made it that to me it means a follower of Christ and that I am I do not believe in organized religion, I am toally against being religious. The church is not a building made with bricks its people. Whom our savior Jesus Christ loves unconditionally. I know that God loves everyone no matter what? I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and I share His Love unconditionally.
.\



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rev.samauel

posted September 1, 2010 at 5:27 pm


I worship a head of lettuce.



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withyobadself

posted September 2, 2010 at 10:45 am


obama is bringing peace to israel… the space people are coming soon



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Matt

posted September 3, 2010 at 3:05 pm


I agree with Anne that many Christians don’t actually understand or follow Christ but her comment is hurtful to Christians like me who do understand the teachings of Christ and can differentiate between what Christ said and Church dogma.
“I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being ‘Christian’ or to being part of Christianity. It’s simply impossible for me to ‘belong’ to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten years, I’ve tried. I’ve failed. I’m an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else.”
Read more: http://blog.beliefnet.com/christianityfortherestofus/2010/07/anne-rice-leaving-christianity-and-a-new-reformation.html#ixzz0yUk2V4z7



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This is the deal



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This will work



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roman scapegoat

posted September 4, 2010 at 2:06 pm


Christians today would kill Jesus if money and power were threaten to be taken away.



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roman scapegoat

posted September 5, 2010 at 11:13 am


The Jewish own media is targeting Obama with negative propaganda to stop the average income Americans from realizing laws passed to protect the average from greed and evil acts created by unregulated golden calf worshiping [just like when mosses freed the Jews]turning against god, using god for profit corporations and banks. The economy is deliberately being kept down by those in power, Jews of course,want Obama out . The banks and those in power of the economy are waiting for Republicans to take back the white house before allowing capitalism to blossom with average income republican voters who are blinded with guilt and shame by the republican fundamentals, the rich comes first then money is shitted and trickled down to the peasants



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roman scapegoat

posted September 6, 2010 at 9:43 am


the rich and powerful want Obama out before average income Americans realize laws to protect from getting screwed by the banks and corporations is a good idea, THE ECONEMY IS DELIBRITLY BEING HOLD BACK BY THOSE IN POWER until Republicans are back in charge!!!!!!The fundamental way of thinking of the republicans is help the rich first then the rich will shit and trickle down money to the peasants. average income tea baggers are the ignorant and backwards of America who cant stand seeing a nigger in charge GOD BLESS AMERICA



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marianne auman

posted October 6, 2010 at 12:11 pm


To Cheelee, you said Christ never frightened anyone. Hmm. Money changers in the Temple; the Pharisees; Pilate.



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Shelley Coe

posted October 7, 2010 at 8:05 am


“Beloved love oneanother because love is of God…”



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Mark

posted October 11, 2010 at 7:32 am


It is sad to mistakenly believe that knowledge of the sanctity of all human life boils down to simply being “anti- artificial birth control”. Or that believing in the sacredness of marriage and of the separate beauty of both men and women is somehow just “anti-feminism or anti-gay”, as much as homosexual behavior and modern feminism are counter to the natural law. I would certainly assign the central role here to God and His natural law, and not assume that your faith should somehow react to misguided liberal ideas of dignity and freedom. Sadly, the secular liberal agenda leads to slavery and misery and we should pray for both Ms. Rice and Ms. Bass.



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Your Name

posted October 11, 2010 at 12:36 pm


mark is an example of a republican in office shameing average income Americans to vote republican to stop Obama from passing laws to protect the 98% of Americans from banks and corporations who’s ceo are mainly jewish.



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Bmars

posted October 11, 2010 at 9:01 pm


Ms. Rice’s struggle is not uncommon but her current “solution” seems unlikely to work very well because most of us need to be in community to experience the devine. There sometimes are a few who, like the desert fathers of old, can devote their lives to solitary searching. However, for most people the best place to struggle with the issues of justice, peace, grace and mercy is in a community of believers. Fortunately, such communities do exist. The “doors to the sacred” are open at every Eucharist — which cannot be celebrated alone. That is one reason I am happy to be an Episcopalian, despite the turmoil caused by our own schismatics.



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romanscapegoat

posted October 14, 2010 at 1:56 pm


bmars is a businessman and fast talker must be a preacher.. GOD IS FREE FOR EVERYONE…RELIGION DOESNT OWN GOD IT OWNS YOU



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romanscapegoat

posted October 15, 2010 at 7:43 am


the jewish owned media did a good job at making the muslims the terrorist while the jews are the true terrorist taking over the world… the jews own the republicans and democrats in the whitehouse and terrorize the American people without regulation. just as Lucifer asked Jesus to join him and together they would rule the world…Lucifer gave the power of the world to the jews for killing their messiah…



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Pat

posted October 21, 2010 at 10:04 am


I understand how Anne Rice feels. I go to chuch I believe Jesus is my lord and savior. I just don’t like rhetoric about hating gays,birth control. We are not here judge others,God will do the judging.God wantsus to love everyone and the people who call themselves christians do a lot of hateful things like going to soldiers funerals and protesting. We who believe in Jesus Christ and God have to pray for those who are hating in the name of christianity.Everyone who says they are christians are not christians because thei behavor does follow Jesus’ way.



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Cecile

posted October 26, 2010 at 2:48 pm


I think Ann and a lot of you have Christianity all wrong. True Christianity teachers, “hate the sin, love the sinner.” I have never heard any Evangelicals, or priests, say that they hate gays, pro femminish, and etc. If any leader of any Christian church, teaches hate, they truly are not quoting Scripture. Never have I seen any scripture saying to hate the sinner. We must pray for them and love them as we love each other, and as Jesus loves us.
Jesus hanging from the cross, asked, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.”



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denise

posted October 28, 2010 at 2:08 pm


the thing is this , love the sinner, as Jesus taught, not the sin. we all fall short of where we should be.



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Tom Williams

posted October 28, 2010 at 5:59 pm


You can’t hold to your ideas and forget the laws God established from the beginning of time. Even Jesus said in Matthew 5 that one jot or one tittle of the law would not change until all had been fulfilled which included all the prophecies of His establishing His Kingdom on earth which hasn’t happened yet. Because you don’t like a law which God established doesn’t make it any less valid and it doesn’t change the fact that I, as a Christian, isn’t suppose to hold that law up as the standard of behavior and fight for it.



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Douglas C. Sloan

posted October 31, 2010 at 2:18 pm


Friends,
REFORMATION II has begun – and you are cordially invited to participate in the dialogue.
http://dmergent.org/2010/10/31/reformation-ii/
REFORMATION II is a personal statement. It is not a creed. As a personal statement, it is dynamic and, over time, is expected to evolve and be refined – with your help.
REFORMATION II is a call for reformation and an invitation to a dialogue. This time, 493 years after the first Reformation, how do we reform for unification instead of schism? How do we reform to emphasize the love and grace of God and eliminate the abuses and excesses of church institutionalism and authoritarianism? How do we reform to emphasize an individual loving intimate relationship with God? How do we reform to make that relationship with God be more important than ritual and creed and dogma and rote attendance?
How do we reform to share the Good News? How do we reform to be – here and now – the Kingdom of God?
Peace,
Doug Sloan



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jmsBell

posted October 31, 2010 at 5:12 pm


This ‘Roman Road’ is very difficult. Certainly, I have on several occasions stopped going to ‘church’…but never stopped being a Christian. Therefore, the Holy Spirit has always led me back to church (school) where I’ve encountered the best of the best and the worse of worse. I continuously fight spiritual battles. I stand up for what is right…I condemn what is wrong, never using myself for a standard(because I myself am a sinner), but Jesus Christ who is the only perfect one. Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose…I’ve been plummeted and I’m scarred up from the ‘blows’ of injustices and the blatant mockery of what Christianity should really is…but I am still a Christian. And though at times it seems like I am the only one, I know I am not the only one that is paying the price for my Christian beliefs. Still, I will not give up…I will not turn around! I will stay my course and even though my voice is most of the time not even heard above the howling winds and the storms of discord and hypocricies that ‘drown’ and dissipate me…I cannot give up the fight! I am going to get my crown! You see…it has my name on it! It’s been paid for by the priceless blood of the Lamb. Yes, the Lamb that said, “I am the way the truth and the light…no one comes to the Father but by me”. So…as the Word of God promises…when we pass through the ‘waters’, we are not alone…and… in the end, our ‘reward’ far outweighs anything we might have gone through on our journey. I believe this…how about you? I pray that the Spirit of Almighty God might lead and guide you in all your paths and that you never, ever forget that Jesus Christ loves ‘you’…that’s why He died for ‘you’…and this will never, ever change.
Blessings, Love & Faith…A Christian



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Keepthe

posted November 7, 2010 at 7:36 am


Jesus hung out with sinners and hypocrites and adulterers, etc. Ms. Rice, perhaps you are with Christianity because he wants you to lead his kids back to Christ’s true salvation. With this writing you were doing exactly the things you accuse others of:sweeping generalizations, intolerance,etc. How is anti-Christianity ok, but not anti-whatever…You’re being intolerant of intolerance. Judging those who judge. Stick to Christianity if he leads you, as he does, as in the word. Go to teach, more than take. It’s not about YOU and your frustration. It’s about HIM!



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Republius

posted November 7, 2010 at 8:28 am


The lessons of Christ and the Bible to suit my needs, therefore Christianity needs to change: this is pure heresy. It is not Christianity that needs to change; it is you.



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Anthony

posted November 10, 2010 at 5:21 pm


Diana,
You wrote: “Well, Anne, I’m with you. I refuse to be anti-gay, anti-feminist, anti-all-those-other-things. I reject mean-spirited, stupid arguments.”
Care to explain to us exactly what that meant?
Seems that one week after the mid-term election this comes out stronger than ever before.
Are you (and/or Anne Rice) anti-Conservative (faith, politics, or both)?
If the Democrats won the majority again, would this even be a headline?
I’d love to discuss actual teachings of The Lord Jesus with you but, I don’t know from what perspective (earth-based or heaven-based) you reference your soul and/or mind from?



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el vann

posted November 13, 2010 at 12:00 am


my only comfort in life or in death is that i belong both body and soul to my faithful savior Jesus Christ. to Him all honor and glory for ever and ever. this i believe ann rice is what you must believe. He must increase and you must decrease. Remember the comandments, you must honor the Lord your God with all your heart and your neighbor as yourself. He must be gloryfied.



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Scot A Schieferstein

posted November 17, 2010 at 3:15 pm


We hear a lot about people who want to follow Jesus but reject any form of “church” on earth. While there is merit in the criticism toward both ends of the spectrum, we must always look to Christ and his disciples (the writers of the New Testament) for what it truly means to follow Christ–not just what makes us feel good or what we think it means.
While I have some definite convictions on what following Christ means according to the Scriptures (and these might change as I grow in my own understanding of what Scripture does say), I think it is clear from the several epistles of the New Testament that we are not to be lone Christians (still a good word if we want to be “Christ-followers”) but we are encouraged, admonished, and even commanded to be part of a local assembly of Christians called the “church.” Now, like these very epistles we read, the local, earthly church is not without its flaws but we are not given an excuse to completely avoid it. This is where Anne Rice and many like here fail to understand in their supposed desire to follow Jesus–it seems they are like any “religious” person who wants a religion that merely makes them feel good without any real cost (or submission to it).
So, while many “good” people like Jesus they are unwilling to dig deep into what He demands of them to truly follow Him. (However, He did say in His usual paradoxical way, “For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”)



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Stephen Pruett

posted November 24, 2010 at 9:44 pm


It is interesting how different definitions of the word “narrow” can be. To me, rigid Christian fundamentalism is narrow. To you, I would be narrow. I don’t want to be anti- anything, but there is this inconvenient book called the Bible. I am concerned that brushing past and explaining away the parts of it that we don’t like will lead to nothing more than a “cheap” faith that makes no demands but also is not transformative. This is not to imply that I am certain I have correctly interpreted everything or even most things in the Bible, but there are passages that are hard interpret more than one way (I am the way the truth and the life. No man comes to the Father but through Me). Does this promote intolerance or exclusivism? I don’t think so. When incorporated with the numerous commands and teachings of Christ that we must treat other people with respect and even love, it becomes an element of faith that does not affect how we interact with others (we treat them the same whether they are Christian, Hindu, Muslim, or whatever).



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dolores maes

posted December 1, 2010 at 11:41 am


i cant believe why anyone can reject the word of god once they know him. i also believe whan elvann said. the ten commandments are what we are to follow. life on this earth is not easy for any christian. we can pray for her and ask GOD TO HELP HER.



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Charles Peele

posted December 3, 2010 at 9:39 am


JESUS CHRIST the same yesterday, today and forever. Jesus died for our sins and HIS death was payment. We are not to continue in sins as Anne Rice would have us believe. HE is our help in all things.
Who can understand the mind of GOD. He hates sin but loves the sinner. I am a sinner just like Anne Rice. The difference…I”m a saved sinner… She is not.. I will pray for her. 5 minites alone with me and my JESUS, she could see the “LIGHT”



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janice l baker

posted December 3, 2010 at 9:42 am


I,(an elder over 7 decades white female born in USA and the SE of it in the Bible Belt do not feel I left my church (non Catholic-non Baptist-most liberal Disciples of Christ except for Unitarian or Quaker maybe I have had family in all of sects it seems in end )do not feel I left the church but the church left me as if went by me
like an express train blowing its whistle and the crossing bells clanging when it became the Religious Right Arm of the Republican
Party which had recruited Jerry Falwell into its ranks for the very purpose of crumbling the wall between church and state in USA.
When the church quit being in forefront of Civil Rights Movement and signed on the suppress human and civil rights and to have their special brand of christian elected or selected for all public offices which made null and void my vote since I seldom found their handpicked passed the litmus tests candidates worthy of my vote for they did not reflect my religious beliefs/knowledges my citizens
rights or what I believe were the constitutional rights listed and implied by large log of case laws based on it.When the church in all its sects became the political moral arm supposedly of the one party of the more well to do and privileged then it again left me behind.
No I am not a child left behind in education for I have higher degrees of that from state college not ivy league I admit but I am not illiterate or uneducated. Basically when I saw blind partisanship and patriotism and capitalism march forth as the real
agenda of the Republican compromised church which went from small neighborhood to huge corporation campuses with much wealth pouring in so that the church then owned its own TV-Radio stations and schools of segregation ( oh yes they are -you either believe as they do or else so that means segregation as much as by class or color or sex) and the charity/mercy/compassion left outside on the streets
where right under their massive spires and among their soccer fields
were the jobless homeless and dying from hunger and exposure which they just did not see much less make an effort to aid. Sure Jim and Tammy could live in mansions with heated doghouses and cold bathroom spigots and sell the new gospel that god rewards christians with this type of wealth so she could make herself into a horror masks
with all her odd adornments on her face and body cause Jimboy just liked his women to look that way when she was very cute and fresh faced typical American girl when he met and married her.
Then Swaggert and his croc tears due to his sexual perversities and then the long known by all child predator priests finally exposed its just been the churches of all types running away from me in end
for not in any of them did I find Jesus the Christ and even what Paul they use its all the negatives along with all others they can find and then the fictions of Revelations by again ministers making good in life in millions or billions selling the bible like its
toothpaste or fine wine whatever- commercializing it and making big capital gains from it- where is Jesus please in all this and where is Paul who said even as he carried the good news around he had to earn his way not take from others esp the small struggling home churches he established by being a tentmaker.
No I did not leave Jesus or the Bible but the church has and thus the church in whatever name they call themselves are preaching the
news of man not of the man they call Christ or of God of Hebrews in their Bible which is not the Old Testament that was adapted for Christian Church use long ago. So the ones whom I know who have left
it is to keep the cherished learnings of earlier and simplier times when the Wall between church and state/politics was high wide and very solid with no crumbling spots or totally fallen places where the
sins of man are worshipped more than the healing and saving graces of Jesus and his god he called father.



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Pat Grimm

posted December 4, 2010 at 6:22 am


In rejecting man made Christian sects or Christianity in general, we are not rejecting Christ, how could that be? He did not create this religion, He came to save us, give us mercy and hope, to FORGIVE and help us through the troubles we created ourselves. He did not come to hate those who are different than what some group believes is “normal”, the outcasts of society, those who have variant views, no He came to love them and show them His love. Christianity was created by man and therefore deeply flawed and in fact a sect like any other, Roman Catholic, Lutheran, all of it, it is man made and not for me, thank you very much.



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Andy Mealer

posted December 5, 2010 at 9:31 am


Not all that cry “Lord, Lord” will be saved, but those who keep the Father’s commandments. God has created each of us, and because of that He cannot stop loving any of us. His love will follow us to the gates of hell if that’s where we choose to go. It is our decision to follow Christ or follow what we believe to be our own thoughts. God loves the thief, the liar, the adulterer, the homosexual, the murderer, and even those who think that their ways are better than His. The church, like God whom it represents, does not reject anyone, but it cannot accept sin as being a normal or positive force in life or in our lives.
Any act or thought that supercedes God’s will is in rebellion to Him. And there are no rebels against God in Heaven. As Christians and as a church we are asked to submit our wills to His, lead the lost to Christ and to let our every thought and action be a true blessing to others. And, yes, there is a difference between blessing and enabling.
The church is not a perfect reflection of God, because we, as people, are not perfect. If we were, there would be no need for Christ. And if all people were perfect, there would be no disagreements in this world. But there is, and we with our imperfections, seek perfection is Jesus the Messiah. Pray for us as we pray for you.



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w8n4Jesus

posted December 7, 2010 at 2:13 pm


Unfortunately for Anne and humanity, christianity has become something far removed from what it’s namesake practiced. If Christ were to return now, he would certainly not recognise the ‘babylon’ that claims to bear His name. That’s probably the reason why He’ll say to some who ‘profess’ Him and claimed to do and live His way to get away from Him bc He NEVER knew them. We cannot hope to be called by the name of Christ and yet not do what He says or even to embrace things contrary to what He says to do and dare to think that He is pleased and that all we need is ‘love and compassion’. Docility (is this even a word) is not an option.



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APH

posted December 12, 2010 at 5:46 pm


.
If I could meet her in person, I would
love to say “Thank you Anne Rice –
for so very articulately stating what
I have felt in my heart for years” !!!!
One’s ‘Faith-in-Christ’ should IN NO WAY
be tied into the man-controlled ‘Religion’
that so many refer to as “Christianity”
(especially that apostate, psuedo-religious
political-movement called ‘evangelicalism’)
It took me forever to realize that my
relationship with God (as established
through Christ Jesus, God The Son) was
IN NO WAY dependent on the apostate
psuedo-religious movement sweeping
America in the name of the “church”.
If Christ were walking the earth today,
a lot of these same “religious” types
would be the first to demand that He
be ‘crucified’ — and based merely on
who He chose as FRIENDS (women,
gays, foreigners, immigrants, the poor,
the rejected, the downtrodden, the rich,
men, old, young, happy, sad, and so on).
The “evangelicals” (not to be mistaken
for TRUE FOLLOWERS of Christ) and
other “church” types have essentially
hijacked the Christian ‘Faith’ in order to
turn it into a mammon-worshipping,
power-mongering, “Religion” of hate.
These people are more akin to a system of
ANTI-CHRIST (i.e. “against”-Christ) than
to anything tied into WHO CHRIST IS.
Their evil has reached such profound levels
that even people who know and love Christ
are turned off from them and their words
(again proving these “church” types are
really nothing more than anti-Christ,
self-righteous Pharisees and are not
even remotely related to Jesus Christ).
Never again will I waste my time stepping
into the psuedo-religious social-club that
is known as “church” or associate myself
with the political-clique that is known as
‘christianity’ — because FROM NOW ON
– I realize that I do NOT “need” either
in order to have a relationship with MY
LORD JESUS CHRIST (in fact, those
two entities were actually ‘interfering’
with my relationship with God)
THROUGH CHRIST — GOD HAS OPENLY
EXPRESSED HIS LOVE TO ‘EVERYONE’
(no matter if rich, poor, gay, straight, male,
female, sickly, healthy and so on) — AND
CHRIST (not the so-called”church”) IS
‘THE DOOR’ and ‘THE WAY’ TO GOD!!
ALL ARE WELCOME TO APPROACH AND
TO ENTER THROUGH ‘THE DOOR’ TO GOD!!
NO ONE IS REJECTED BY JESUS CHRIST !!!
JESUS LOVED AND LOVES EVERYONE !!!
LET’S ALL TRY TO REMEMBER
THE BIBLE VERSE OF ‘JOHN 3:17’:
“For God did NOT send His Son
into the world – to condemn
the world, BUT that the world,
THROUGH HIM, might be SAVED !!!!”
JESUS CHIST – and *not* the institution known
as “the church” or the religion called “christianity”
— IS THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE!!!
LIKE MANY OTHER PEOPLE – I AM DONE
WITH THE CHURCH & WITH CHRISTIANITY
– AND FROM HERE ON OUT – MY FOCUS IS
ON (AND FAITH IN GOD RELIES IN) JESUS
CHRIST AND JESUS CHRIST ALONE !!!
.



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wildgoose

posted December 15, 2010 at 5:43 pm


We need to spend less time condemning and more time exalting. In the New Testament the church is considered the “body of Christ”. In Revelations it is considered to be His bride. “Self-righteousness” is not unique to the church, but exists in all mankind. We are told,that if we see a problem with someone in the church, we need to correct them in meekness – not condemn them, lest we be condemned. The church and church-goers are not perfect. However, we seek perfection in Christ to whom we submit ourselves. The Apostle Paul spoke of those who are new to the church and need to be fed milk, while seeking the solid food of the gospel. Regardless of our position in life, we are all a work-in-progress.



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Sara

posted December 16, 2010 at 9:42 am


I’m sorry that so many have been hurt by “the church” but we need to remember that the church is US, the body of Christ, a bunch of sinners. If the church is messed up you are as responsible for that as I. It’s so easy to see others as the problem (in this case the church) and absolve ourselves.
I’m pretty sure APH didn’t mean it that way, but he just told all of us who are evangelicals that we don’t truely follow Christ. Is that not hateful? Would you like to come to my church sometime, APH, and then reassess your judgement?



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Michael Phillips

posted December 18, 2010 at 3:19 pm


I think the real issue here is that church and state should remain distinctly separate. Jesus referred to an “assembly of believers” in His Kingdom of God teachings. He taught this is a spiritual kingdom.
The churches founded since then socialized religion. In this long process, fundamentalism and revolution theology, both about 100 years old, have changed this social direction to include politics, and thus this anti-science, anti-gay, anti-abortion, anti-everything political rhetoric, whereas Jesus studiously avoided all economic and political issues, always teaching “Render unto Cesar what is Cesar’s, and Render unto God what is God’s”.
Point in fact: Without churches, believers have no place to participate in public group worship, unless with other believers of a like interpretation in very small groups, if available. Thus anyone wanting to avoid politics should be able to find a church that studiously avoids such.
There is no need to quit Jesus nor church. All churches are not evangelical nor political. That’s the reason we have so many denominations, as every time there was dissension the dissenters formed a new church denomination.
Had we stuck to Jesus’ assembly of believers in his Kingdom, the problem would have been avoided.
Mike



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UGG Outlet

posted December 25, 2010 at 1:30 am


I am happy to find this post very useful for me, as it contains lot of information UGG OutletI always prefer to read the quality content and this thing I found in you post. Thanks for sharing.



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Loretta

posted December 27, 2010 at 1:02 pm


To Anne Rice and those who agree with her latest spiritual awakening, the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob, and His Son Jesus have no part in all that Rice finds wrong with Christianity. It is the actions of some of the people who profess to be Chritians who have presented Christinaity in such negative way. I encoruage Anne and her like-minded supporters to go the Word of God and really study the message and teaching God and Jesus left for those of us who confessed Romans 10:9&10 and strive to live according to John 13:35.



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Tucker

posted December 31, 2010 at 10:32 am


I’m frustrated with the whole ‘anti’ whatever aspects of popular Christianity. Instead of defining our faith in the negatives, we should be defining our faith by what we are ‘for’. This doesn’t mean I through wreaths of glowing acceptance over everything, but that I look in the mirror and extract my own plank from my own eye first. Sin exists and sin can be systemic. Sin derives both from nature and nurture. We learn it and we are born with it. Praise be to God that He sent His son to save me in spite of my gluttony and sloth, and that He will save my brother from his desire to have sexual relations with men. Without Christ’s redeeming blood, we are equally dead.
My issue is not that I want to be ‘anti’ anything. I also don’t want to see EVERYTHING accepted as normative and without consequence. It’s a balance that needs discourse which is not dismissive of the ‘other side’ and is not done in populist sound bites.



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Luiza

posted January 1, 2011 at 3:26 pm


The discussion started out with respectful, insightful comments to Anne Rice’s decision, but soon the haters start with the same old song. “My religion is better than yours. The comments made by a Seventh-Day Adventist were particularly sad, and very typical of this sect. I was forced to be in it for many years, and it took me forever to recover from viewing Catholics as the sons and daughters of Satan. Eventually, I joined that Catholic church, and although I disagree with many of its teachings, I won’t quit because of my disagreements. The peaceful feeling I get from attending Mass cannot be replaced by anything, also receiving the body of Christ has so much meaning to me. I don’t have many friends because I believe that gays should get married, and also Catholic priests should have a choice if they want celibacy or not. But I keep going to church because my soul needs it. Yes, the Catholic church has made many mistakes in the name of God, but it has done more good than evil. I think of some priests and nuns that have lost their lives to defend the rights of the poor. In my country, Brazil many priests that advocate for the end of child protitution have received death threats. Sister Dorothy Stagg was murdered in Brazil for defending the rights of the “landless people”. Is with that in mind that I go to church every Sunday.
Happy New Year to all!



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how to win the lottery

posted January 8, 2011 at 3:15 pm


This is a big task that you’re undertaking. The best of luck to you!



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rc0213

posted January 21, 2011 at 12:11 pm


This is an example of how people are turning away from Christianity, and it is expected of people in this time and age to reject Christianity. With all the kids and young adults who got it easy with divorced parents vying for the kids love with money and no discipline. With the need of this generation to play a video game and master it in no time.
I know this because I married a woman who has two teens and one young adult. And, all three cannot handle challenges. My wife has problems pushing them to succeed. Making things easy for your kids is a disservice to them. Until they gain confidence in knowing that they can overcome any challenge if they set their mind to it, they will only see failure.
And, this is what I see in Anne Rice. She sees hypocricy, secular criticism and pressure by the secular world to turn her back to Christianity. God predicted this, and it is true, the world does not condone what God wants man to do.
The things God teaches us counters most of the secular world’s views, so there is always conflict. It is up to us, as Christians, to be strong and fervent in our faith. You didn’t become a Christian to make life easy, did you? You became a Christian because you knew you were a sinner and wanted Jesus Christ to be your personal saviour. This does not stop the hardships of the world.
The world will always try to give you hardship. Satan will always whisper in your ears things to disrupt your relationship with God. And, unless you read the Bible, pray everyday, practice trying to be a Christian and make good decisions and go congregate with other brothers and sisters in Christ in church, you will find it a rough road, and I think Anne Rice did not do any of these things.
Being alone in the world as a Christian is very tough, which is why we need each other and God. Pray for Anne and anyone else in your life that are lost. Pray for our leaders in church and government. We need a revival, and we need it now.
This is the time to return to be the Christian nation God wanted us to be.



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Jeff Huddleston

posted January 31, 2011 at 11:28 am


1 John 2:19 “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.”



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Kate Hakkinen

posted March 17, 2011 at 2:23 am


Rather cool place you’ve got here. Thanx for it. I like such topics and everything connected to them. I would like to read a bit more on that blog soon.
Kate Hakkinen
escort accompagnatrice milano studentessa



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dave Martinez

posted December 15, 2011 at 4:28 am


Jesus wasn’t a polatitian. He didn’t come to save and please the masses in fact He offended many because He told it like it is! He came to save the few who’s hearts are open enough to hear His call. His life on earth was an example for us to follow. Obviously He leads by example and hasn’t asked us to do anything He hasn’t done Himself. He’s not asking us to die for one another, but to live, to live for Him since He has already died for us. However it is hard to live free and righteous when by sinning we keep adding links to the chains of sin that keep us bound. He was the same in the begin, is now, and always will be. It is us who keep trying to kick against the bricks!



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Jacied Ksenjas

posted July 27, 2012 at 2:56 pm


I will right away take hold of your rss feed as I can’t find your e-mail subscription hyperlink or newsletter service. Do you’ve any? Kindly let me understand in order that I may just subscribe. Thanks.



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