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21 March 2010 @ 09:18 pm
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Where should I start?
First of all, my name is Finn, or Syd, whichever you prefer. I'm a local Minnesotan with a love for cartoons, art, and the like. I'm... not going to touch on my furry side (even though that's a big part of me), but, if you have any questions, please ask me, and not MTV. There's alot of hate after us out there, but, I assure you, I'm (and we're, pretty much) harmless, promise.

Anyway, now that the brief introduction is out of the way, here's the actual post:

I grew up in a Christian home. Not Catholic, just non-denominational Christian. When I was a kid, I read The Bible (the kind with pictures, short sentences, filled with love), went to church, made friends, and then my family and I just kinda... left, for whatever reason. We didn't return to church for atleast four or five years (when I left the church, I was about 9, so that makes sense).

When my family decided to go back to church, I had hit puberty. I had found myself wanting to sleep in until about noon or more, so getting up at nine o’ clock in the morning to do something we hadn’t done in years was... rather upsetting. Furthermore, I had found myself attracted to the same sex, and, later on, questioning my gender as a whole. I knew that the church, from what I was taught from one side of my family, was not accepting to homosexuals, or those questioning their gender.

In short, going to church was not a pleasant experience. My mom’s side of the family had gone to a small, hole-in-the-wall church, with about 15 people total; most of the being adults and small children. There were only two teenagers there: One being me, and the other one who was the pastor’s daughter, who aspired to be a paster herself. I remembered trying to ask the paster questions during his sermon, only to be told to be quiet and listen by my mother, or the answer that I got was, “Because God says so.” I remembered trying to ask the pastor is Jesus loves or hates “fags,” after his talk, and he chuckled, telling me that I needed to form a relationship with Him first. I remembered that most of the people there talked about Jesus, and just Jesus, not other interests, after church was over, when they served coffee and juice. It made me wonder, “Do these people like anything else? Don’t they watch TV, listen to music, or play video games like I do?”

We left there for about a year, because my mom, for whatever reason, was uncomfortable with it. We went to another church for Easter Sunday. It was located in a movie theatre. It seemed like a nice place - until we started going there multiple times. The pastor, through my eyes, seemed... off. He criticized music tastes; He said that if you listened to, say, Pink Floyd, that, “Heh, and you call yourselves Christians.” He wanted church members to invite their non-Christian friends to their church, no matter what the cost - and, yet, despite the fact that he wanted an increasing amount of members, he didn’t want to expand the church physically, and make it bigger, or move. He wanted people to donate money to the church, and said that, “If you donate [this amount of money] to the church, God will do good things for you.”

All of these factors made me absolutely uncomfortable. I’m highly inspired by all kinds of music, Christian and non-Christian, most of my friends are non-believers which I don’t want to lose, and the fact that you want people to donate money, while saying that, “if you do, good things will happen,” just seems to bring up red flags.

It would be nice to get in touch with God again, to have that same belief that I did as a child, but the churches that I keep running into aren’t fitting for me. In all honesty, they seem kind of... crazy, to me.
So, here I am, asking for help. How to I find the right church for me? Is there another way of getting the same messages, maybe, without going to church and traveling? I was thinking about looking into Podcasts, but I don’t know anything about them, let alone where to find them. Maybe someone could help me out on that, too?

Many thanks.


~ Syd
(FinnIsBound)
 
 
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Desdemona's Space Station and Bait Shop: Religious leftdesdemonaspace on March 22nd, 2010 09:41 pm (UTC)
Hi, Finn.

Have I got the church for you:

Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church
www.brynmawrchurch.org
420 Cedar Lake Road South
Minneapolis, MN 55405-1920
(612) 377-5222

In unrelated news, my own family is searching for a nice leftish church home. We're Catholic (my partner), Lutheran (me), and Baptist **shudder**(the grandchild, who was taken to Baptist church when she was in foster care). We can't seem to agree on a denomination, but Bryn Mawr Presbyterian was great, and the most gay-friendly church I have ever been to. The only reason we didn't ultimately join is that in spite of the overwhelming gay-friendliness, it was also overwhelmingly white, and my partner and grandchild are native. It's a little weird that the church is so white, too, if you consider that it's in north Minneapolis (Bryn Mawr, the nice part). We were looking for a leetle more integration, even a liberal Baptist church with fabulous music, if a liberal Baptist church even exists.

Also, St. Joan of Arc in south Minneapolis is quite liberal, too. I hear that they're always in trouble with the diocese for their liberal ways, bless them.

Signed,
Ezagaaikwe