cartoon: inclusion

cartoon: inclusion March 2, 2011

Faith without works is dead. That is, our beliefs are made manifest in action. The action is the belief. We can say we are inclusive but if we are all white middle-class males then the belief can be seriously questioned.

Which reminds me of a story. In 1995 when we left the Presbyterian Church in Canada, Lisa and I wondered if maybe we were being called back into the Pentecostal Church. That’s where we met. So we formally approached the district we resided in at the time. We were granted an interview. We arrived at the Pentecostal district headquarters and were escorted into the conference room to be interrogated. It was full of large white men in suits. Over 20 of them if I remember rightly. It was the most intimidating time in Lisa’s life. And it wasn’t easy for me either. But that was a group that didn’t practice inclusion… because it didn’t believe in it. Obviously.

We weren’t accepted back into the Pentecostal Church mainly because I wouldn’t say drinking is a sin.

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  • Lynn

    I’m trying to figure out why one would want to be in a group like that. The only reason, probably, would be if you were born into it, and your ideas had changed from theirs over time, but you still want to be accepted.

    I found that ideology tops everything else. You may be a wonderful person, but if you think differently AND express it (!!!), they don’t desire you in their group. All while saying, “Come one, come all!” What they mean is, “Come one, come all who will defer to our thinking!”

  • kls
  • Johnfom

    Lynn,

    One would want to join a group like that because that’s where the power is; political and economic power.

    If you want something done, you ‘get with’ the middle income white males of your community who will network and plan it… then hand it over to their wives and kids to accomplish, because obviously they are too busy with earning the income and wotnot to actually DO the work.

    IMO, that’s one reason why you see a lot of churches with majority white male leadership but white female and youth involvement.

  • rjw918

    I’ve always wondered what the anti-drinking groups do with Luke 7:33-35

    33 For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ 34 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ 35 But wisdom is proved right by all her children.”

  • Prejudice is very subtle. Including others involves changing ourselves. It’s difficult. Some musings http://bit.ly/he2KlR http://bit.ly/eUdwPw

  • Lynn

    Johnfom,
    I think you’ve nailed it. There is power in numbers, so that’s one reason to be part of a church. I know also that although they are sincere believers, some men get clients for their businesses from the congregation. Their church membership is a source of customers. If you’re in business but nobody knows you, you’re at a great disadvantage.

    Your comment about women doing the actual work reminds me of my mom. My dad was busy working 3rd shift and sleeping during the day and part of the evening. My mom worked full-time plus sang in the choir at church, taught Sunday School, planned and hosted parties for the church kids, held cook-outs for the adult Sunday School class, worked as a camp counselor at our church camp in the summers. Daddy mainly just showed up for Sunday morning service or manned the grill at the cook-outs.

    I’ve laughed sometimes picturing some obviously gay couples walking into the service at church or any group that is in a different category somehow from middle-class white. I think it would be awkward for everybody. At least at a small church.

  • When the Dove has flown all that’s left is the dove dung!

  • I was just thinking about this on my blog yesterday, and love how Mr.Hayward is able to zero in on a truth or expose a lie so clearly.

  • “That is, our beliefs are made manifest in action. The action is the belief” (NP)

    I totally agree, the proof is in the pudding (so to speak). How can we really know what someone thinks/believes? Well, the tell tale sign of their ideas and thoughts is their ‘actions’…when an idea flows through a conduit (ie: human) and becomes a reality (ie: an action).

    In the case of inclusion, this church sounds like a semi-business and semi-boys club. The fact you were a little different than them they had to brauch you aside for a more ‘clonelilike’ candidate speaks volumnes to the theological incest occuring in their midst.

  • Jason

    Wow dude I was in the pentecostal Church for 10 years I don’t remember wearing or seeing anyone wear white but I do remember them asking me to wear a big red “A” I thought it stood for Alvin from the chipmunks.

  • jason: LOL. big red A!

  • Jelies Lubberts

    Sorry David you are so far away from here I would have liked to have shared a drink with you on this. A lot of my friends are pentecostal and many of them enjoy a drink together, if that is still a sin in that organization than I guess there must be a lot who don’t measure up to their standards. (ironic Jesus turned water into wine )

  • thanks Jelies. yes, I know a lot of pentecostals who partake.

  • LOL – spot on. 🙂

    I remember the Pentecostals telling me I was going to hell because I wore pants and wasn’t baptized in the name of Jesus – “Father, son and holy spirit” doesn’t count in their mind. So yeah they were partaking of something that’s for sure. 🙂

  • I had a friend who was a Pentecostal, and he was telling me all of the different things that a Christian ought be doing.

    I said to him, “I’ve known you for a long time, Shayne…when are you going to start?”