I’m no longer interested in Church at all

A few months ago I made a decision that I was not interested in attending church any longer and that included being involved in activities there.

Its not all long ago that I was happy to attend and happy to help out. I’m not entirely sure what sparked the change in attitude. I suspect it was no individual thing that drove this decision; rather it was a gradual adjustment of perspective.

The final straw came when my wife volunteered us both to help out in the weekly youth club. I didn’t particularly respond positively and the result was the accusation of me putting on a face like I’d been told to do something I didn’t want to do. The back story here is that some members have become unhappy with the church and withdrawn. This included some who had been involved in the youth club. Being in dire need of assistance, my wife did the honourable thing and offered help from a couple with past experience of youth club.

I went along for a couple of weeks and did my best, but frankly my heart wasn’t in it and it showed. Its hard to pretend to be an enthusiastic youth leader when you really aren’t engaging with the bigger picture. I had fun in the games but found the story time and biblical elements even more uncomfortable than when I sit in church.

The result was I had to admit that I was being turned off church and was at a point where I really didn’t want to be there at all. My wife has been very gracious in this and I suggested that I stop altogether because the last thing she wanted was a husband who resented church because it was forced to be there for the sake of appearances.

I didn’t see this coming

The honest truth here is that this has taken me by surprise. I never expected to be in a place where I was stopped church altogether and would seriously wonder if I was heading along a path towards being ‘anti church’. I’m not there now, but I do wonder if one day I will become disillusioned with people of faith to the point that I become anti organised religion to the point of some of the vocal atheists I know.

I’m not there yet, so let’s not get too carried away just yet.

I think there are two main reasons for my change in stance. One is that I am not at all comfortable being in a church service environment any more. Everything is so familiar, and yet so strangely alien. I know most of the hymns and song off by heart, I have heard most sermons and children’s talks. However, its not a world view I identify with anymore and the arguments I hear all get disassembled in my mind. I simply can’t engage on either a spiritual or intellectual level.

Maybe one day I’ll be able to articulate how and why I made this transformation of attitude. For the moment I can’t, I only know its happened. Maybe it was inevitable and I was just being naive or denialist in thinking I could continue to be supportive of church; probably both.

 

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6 thoughts on “I’m no longer interested in Church at all

  1. I’m not sure when I first started following your story but I had forgotten that my old blog on your blogroll – ‘The Room of Grace’ still existed. Like you I’m no longer interested in church despite taking my wife each week (she doesn’t drive). Unlike you I have long understood the creation story of Genesis as myth and symbolism and I don’t think I have ever accepted the inerrancy of the Bible.

    I have been outside the walls of ‘traditional’ Christianity for some 40 years and my views have changed quite significantly over the last three years – but I still think that one of the major lessons for me is that there is an enormous difference between the Christian RELIGION and the Christian FAITH.

    Over the last six months a lot has changed – as I have explained in my new blog which I finished rewriting yesterday. Many thousands of people have been drawn away from traditional churches that they may have been attending for many years. The result is usually a ‘wilderness experience’ where their original faith is sometimes totally transformed and sometimes destroyed, but where most end up as agnostics in the true sense of the word.

    Food for thought?

  2. Pingback: A Wonderful Positive Conclusion « Confessions Of A YEC

  3. Hi Limey

    I was wondering if you were interested in doing a guest post on the topic: on the tiresomeness of going to church as an atheist

    AND/OR

    Being in a Mixed marriage christian-Atheist and the issues that come up, and overcoming the issues of dogma.

    I was wondering if you were interested let me know, if you want to do both or just one, or do it all in one post, or do it for yourself and I reblog it. Just let me know what you think thanks.

  4. Pingback: The Tiresomeness of Going to Church as an Atheist | The BitterSweet End

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