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Sunday, February 24, 2013

Welcome to My New Religion´╗┐ by Jerry Hinkle

     I've heard atheists, agnostics, and other critics of the Church say that Christianity is a "Made up" religion. To be fair, they say all of them are made up. The purpose of a religion is to feel closer to God, or god, if you prefer. It's possible that the only reason Christ brings be closer to God is because I was brought up that way. Still, if I could change anything about the Church, here is how I'd go about it.
First of all: Communion. Bread and "wine" just doesn't do it for me. Welch's Grape Juice was invented by a Methodist as an alternative to alcohol for Communion, which is a good start, but I'd kick it up a notch. Out with bread and wine, in with cookies and milk. Better yet, we could try Chocolate cake and milk.
     Second: Fish on Friday during Lent. Yes, I know that the first disciples were fishermen who became fishers of men. But lets change that to cowboys who became wranglers of men. Instead of leaving their boats by the lake shore, they set their ponies free. BOOM! Beef on Friday! By the way, Jesus is called the Good Shepard, and yet the Christian Church of the 21st century doesn't see fit to eat sheep. I say bring that back! Out with ham for Easter, in with lamb for Easter!
As for the teachings of Jesus, I have no quarrel with them, but there is the issue of what to do about women and gays. Are they welcomed in church? Can they become clergy? I say, yes! That is, IF they meet the scriptural criteria.
     The problem with this kind of "made up" religion is that there is no growth. It's little more than Cafeteria Christianity. One of the great things about religion is the way it causes the faithful to suffer. If people enjoyed eating fish, they would be less inclined to turn to Jesus in order to remove their sins. And Jesus being the bread of life instead of the chocolate cake shows us the difference between needing and wanting. Fact is, the Biblical Jesus works because he has been bringing the faithful back to God for 2000 years. If we changed the Christian tradition, we might as well be worshiping Elvis like the pagans in Las Vegas do!
God be with you and do the Best you can!

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