Sunday, 14 February 2016

Alternative Communion

I’m interested in establishing a non-traditional, gospel based, spiritual fellowship that will be open, welcoming, inclusive, liberal, progressive, committed, sincere, profound, engaging, challenging, rewarding, supportive, nurturing, enlightening, inspiring, empowering, and participatory.

By gospel I mean the universal brotherhood of all humanity – one for all and all for one – in the service of the Father Almighty; the Source, Centre, and Destiny of all things, meanings, values, and beings.

I see the traditions out there, hard at work – ministers tending their flocks, singing songs of praise and generally doing their thing but I have yet to find one that feels like HOME. I understand each to their own when it comes to communal religious worship but I have yet to find a fellowship that I could feel a part of, where I could let my guard down, be my self, and enjoy communion with my brethren. I know and believe that we are all one family under God but it is true that birds of a feather flock together and, I guess, I’m looking for my flock.

I am devoted to the Master and his cause but I don’t personally subscribe to many of the teachings of the traditions and that creates challenges. It appears to me that the world of Christendom is subdivided up into various communities whose borders are defined by their respective creeds, and who have made salvation and passage into communion dependent upon the willingness of the prospective member to subscribe to their particular variation of their respective creeds; a salvation by right beliefs sort of thing. This issue is further compounded by the tendency of some to externalise their identities. They identify themselves with their creed, code, and cult, and consequently confuse the rejection of some or all of their creed, code, and cult, as somehow a rejection of them and I don’t want to be hurting anyone’s feelings. I just want to sit down, break the bread of spiritual inspiration and share it with my fellows.

I enjoy the company of the followers of Jesus, regardless of their beliefs, but I personally find the atonement doctrine revolting and the call to the hatred and condemnation of homosexuality despicable. If some Christian thinks I’ve just bought a one way ticket to eternal damnation for espousing such opinions, that’s cool too – whatever floats your boat buddy but that’s the sort of thing that creates serious challenges to communion, that and the dreadful worship music that get played in contemporary churches. Don’t get me wrong, I love music; I’m a musician myself but some of the tunes belted out in the churches are like needles in my ears. I just can’t handle them.

So I’m caught on two things: the demand for conformity of beliefs and having to endure [what is for me] terrible music. I understand there’s no accounting for taste. Some like heavy metal, some like country, others classical and opera, and yet others love contemporary Christian worship music. Not me, sorry about that. I will gladly concede that some of the tunes are great, Rich Mullins and other spring to mind but overall quality is pretty low. Maybe one of you good people will educate me.

I’ve got a few like minded friends here in Galway. We have a little fellowship [at least one of which really, really, loves worship music] and I’m wondering if there are any other like-minded souls out there that would be interested in setting something up?

For more on the subject check out this link

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