But most of all, Misener’s essay points to the sad state of so much American religious life, especially the messages delivered by too many Christian churches. She makes clear that, at times, she still feels “a wave of something truly ineffable, a surreal flutter in my soul that the world was vast and overwhelming and rich and meaningful and also not really fucking meaningful at all.” That’s something most of us have felt, I’d guess, whether believer or not. It’s a pity that the brittle, ahistorical, and ultimately untenable evangelicalism she was peddled convinced her that those feelings are alien to Christianity, that faith demands the silencing of doubt and uncertainty. It’s a shame that too many Christian churches present the Bible in such a way that, when an earnest young person encounters the historical-critical approach to it, the result is shock and perplexity. It’s lamentable that more churches aren’t places where such difficulties can be worked through, where you feel welcome even if you are far from having what you believe figured out. Pope Francis has said that the Church should be a “hospital for sinners,” which is to say a refuge for all of us who struggle in all kinds of ways, profound doubt included. Misener’s story is testimony to how far Christians have to go to make the Pope’s words a reality.The essay Sitman refers to is here. Rod Dreher gives his Orthodox take here.
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Quotation Of The Day: Belief, Faith, And Doubt Edition
From Matthew Sitman writing at Andrew Sullivan's blog: