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Ettiquette relating to church???

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Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby scaravich » Thu May 30, 2013 9:03 pm

Recently I have received an invitation to join a church. This is with someone I carpool with and so I have like an hour of chatting with them a week. I don't want things to become awkward.

I do not have any problem with Christianity and other people following it. I like learning about it, though, but I have no desire or intention of following that path. It is definitely not for me. I have been to churches, read the Bible, and learned a lot about it, and did try to become a Christian when I was younger. But it's just... not for me at all.

Anyway, before dropping me off at home after our rehearsal, this guy invited me to join the church he goes to. I thanked him but didn't say yes or no. I don't really want to go. But I'm also curious of perhaps visiting his church once, because I just like to learn about how other people practice. I am very respectful and admiring of Christians. I have no qualms with them. I don't mind being in a church. But I don't want to join one and go regularly, of course.

So I want to decline, but perhaps one day I might visit to make him happy and out of curiosity (we often talk about his church and they seem to do some neat stuff).

But how do you politely decline a church invitation without 'coming out' as a non-Christian? I mean, I don't want to lie and say I'm a Christian. But I want to have to avoid letting him know that if possible. Because, well, you never know with people sometimes (I've lost good, long-time friends over 'coming out' before, and I have to be around this guy alone in a car for an hour a week, so...) I am sure he will ask again.

And if you do visit a church for a service, is it considered inappropriate or disrespectful, if you have absolutely no intention of joining or believing and don't even follow that faith? I would go along with whatever traditions they had, pray, etc., even though it would not mean anything to me. For some reason, this just seems "wrong" to do. Even though I would be doing it with full respect for the church. I don't know what the view of members of the church would be though.

I would probably not visit, though, because I don't want to have to go through the awkward dodging of talking about how I'm not coming back, how I don't practice Christianity, etc. But I was just curious about how Christians view this.
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby Zili » Sat Jun 01, 2013 10:30 am

just say no thanks he doesn't need an explanation as to why you don't want to go and if he wants one you can say you don't want to talk about it or say you have other plans. leave it simple.

its not disrespectful to want to attend another religion's service as long as you do not participate in something you don't believe in. At the Catholic church they have the holy Eucharist, turning the wine to blood and the bread to flesh then consuming it. It would be considered disrespectful to eat and drink of the body of Christ if you are not a Christian so you sit in the pew and let others pass.
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby -Dark-Moon- » Sat Jun 01, 2013 7:21 pm

I agree with Zili, it's ok to say no and it's also ok to go along. I have attended a church with a friend before who needed support at that time, and of course funerals weddings etc.... And guess what, I wasn't even struck by lightning when I walked in :)

Your faith shouldn't make carpooling awkward - if so, perhaps you're picking up their need to convert people and that's what's making you uncomfortable.
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby firebirdflys » Sat Jun 01, 2013 10:44 pm

You might want to thank him, then say you have your own path that you are very devoted to. When he inquires, either say you don't mix religion and carpooling, or something like my faith is between myself and God, or you just would rather not say. But you could go to the service...add your salt and the sermon can work, sometimes...You don't have to go back :flyingwitch:
As for the sacred wafer...I am not confirmed for sure...and I have never melted when I went to eat it. (no one can prevent worship in your heart and mind) so for me the wafer was the "bread" ...Usually I stand down on that part, unless I'm feeling particularly brazen, you know? we don't withhold the sacred loaf, should some new person visit our circle...
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby SnowCat » Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:54 pm

If you are truly interested, I think you should go. It just needs to be understood up front, that this is a visit, not a commitment. The Catholic church believes in denying. Communion too anyone who won't meet their standards.The Catholi cCurchstill practices the doctrine of Transubstatistion. I believe that when Jesus metaphorically. I've noticed that Catholics are not fond of being accused of human sacrifice and cannabilism.

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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby scaravich » Sun Jun 02, 2013 1:36 am

Thanks for the advice guys :) I think I have a better idea of what I will say next time he brings it up :) If I am lucky, he just won't extend the invitation again, and perhaps he'll assume I'm just waiting for the right time. My curiosity is not too strong, so I don't know if I'll go or not... in the end probably not, especially since he invited my brother, too, and I know my brother has no intention of going. I think it's a very low-pressure/casual environment at his church, from what it sounds like.
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby -Dark-Moon- » Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:33 am

Tell him you'll go to church if he comes to a full moon ritual. Lol :)
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby Kassandra » Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:51 am

.


-Dark-Moon- wrote:Tell him you'll go to church if he comes to a full moon ritual. Lol :)
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby scaravich » Sun Jun 02, 2013 10:41 am

lol!! You guys are great :3
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby Lillady » Thu Jun 06, 2013 11:43 pm

I understand your feelings here. I have tried Christianity, I have been Christian, I was christiened Catholic as a baby. Here I am 32 years later and am Wiccan and been up and down studying/practicing it. The past few years I have been able to "come out of the closet" sort of speak. You dont have to tell him anything you are uncomfortable with. If you dont want to go then simply dont and tell him you just dont feel comfortable. As far as taking the bread and wine I would not because that is their belief and not yours and partcipating in something you do not believe in is disrespectful to not just them but could be looked down upon by our own God(s) and Goddess(es). We shouldn't have to hide from what we believe in. As wiccans we are stereotyped and that is ashamed. I was at a gas station a cpl of weeks ago and this Jehovahs witness was speaking to my husband, inviting him to this huge even at a local venue. I got back in the van, she greeted me, repeated the story. I thanked her kindly and told her I was Wiccan. She smiled, left and we all went about our day. yes not all people react so nicely but we should be able to express who we are. I do not like to lose friends or family just like anyone else, but if people truly care for you they will accept it.
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Re: Ettiquette relating to church???

Postby scaravich » Sun Jun 09, 2013 3:05 pm

Thanks Lillady. Luckily he just didn't decide to invite again the last time we rode together, so I didn't have to worry about it. The main thing I worry about is that the case in which it does bother him that I'm non-Christian, we still have to ride in a car together over an hour each week. So that's not really comfortable, you know? I'd rather hide than deal with that lol.

Plus I'm not completely opposed to the idea of visiting his church, though I've decided I don't think I'd be terribly comfortable doing it at the moment, so I probably won't go.

But if he does invite again, I think I'll be better prepared to respond now. Thanks, everyone :)
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