KOK Edit: Your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM)
KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) Katharine O'Moore Klopf

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

"Where Are the Good Christians?"

"Where are the good ?" columnist Mark Morford writes today in his SFGate.com article. Thank goodness somebody's noticed that all the antigay and Schiavo-must-live-forever Christians don't represent all Christians. We nonfanatical Christians don't make the news much, as Morford says, because we're busy working quietly for peace, justice, and an end to poverty and discrimination.

We're the ones working in soup kitchens.

We're the ones giving as much of our money as we can to tsunami relief efforts, to programs that provide job training, to peacemaking organizations, to the ACLU, to PFLAG.

We're going on a Midnight Run to give a meal and clothing and conversation to homeless people.

We're flying "Pray for Peace—Act for Peace" flags and marching in war protests.

We're writing to our senators and representatives and our president about illegal, immoral wars.

We're wearing "Another Presbyterian for " T-shirts and carrying "Another Christian for GLBT Rights" tote bags.

We're working behind the scenes with groups promoting GLBT equality.

We're blogging about justice.

We're too busy living God's word to bash people over the head with our Bibles. We're too busy trying to do what's right ourselves—because we know, as mere humans, that we don't know it all—to tell everybody else how they should live.

We won't stop until consenting adults can marry whichever other adult they want to marry.

We won't stop until all women in the world have the same rights as men.

We won't stop until everyone has plenty of food.

We won't stop until there is peace among all nations.

We won't stop until bigotry disappears.

We won't stop until the hatred is gone.

We won't stop. Ever.


Anonymous said...

Editor Mom you make me feel new hope that there are people left who help and pray and are humble to know that with knowledge comes a realization that we actually know soooo little.

It is hard to be heard in this world where the brash make headlines and get soundbites galore. Yet, for those of us who still try our best to do good works we can take comfort in seeing others speaking openly for all, and any, to read.

God bless you EditorMom. Keep thinking and keep writing and I am happy to know that you make time to hug your kids regularly.

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

God bless you, too, Chris. You're a good guy, one I'm proud to know in real life.

Anonymous said...

When I was young (17 I'm 36 ish now), my mother was undergoing the whole “Xmass craziness.”That issued every year in our home every year. She asked me to help her by doing something I did it, being a teen ager I did just what she asked and no more. She went nuts screaming at the top of her lungs finally,hours later, she ended her tie raid with “If you don't want to help me you never have to do Xmass again!” And from that day to this I haven't. No presents (none given or accepted, no decorations, no time off from work asked.

I found it was great a weight off my chest. I was free. The expense and hollow feeling of decorations, fake smiles, enegery wasted on pretending I really wanted to spent the day with drunk relatives was a thing of the past.

Eventually I decided to go to churches every year on xmass and thanksgiving and aid in cooking for those that have no one or nothing. That is the way I celebrate the “day of Christs Birth”. Having moved about 700 miles from home I had to find a new place to “Do my thing”. I went to a new church where I set about cooking. All of a sudden I became the center of attention with requests to “Join them for worship” I listened to the talk of the people involved and realized these people were not the Christian I grew up with they were some mutant brand “Holy Roller” that I found not only creepy but offensive. Last year after many years of my service to the community decided it may be best not to ever set foot in a church again.

So what happened to the real Christian? They were chased out by the Nut Jobs.

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

I like the way you celebrate Christ's birth, Grumpymann. And I can sympathize with your desire to have nothing to do with organized religion.

I grew up in the Southwest in a very fundamentalist church that is part of a major mainstream denomination. The constant emphasis there on how "evil" and "undeserving" human beings are—instead of on God's love and working to make the world a better place—did major damage to my self-esteem. And the fact that women in that denomination are not allowed to hold positions of authority in the church didn't help, either. Finally, I always wondered why, if God delights in children, so many of God's followers think it is right to hit, slap, and belittle them in the service of teaching them right from wrong.

I spent at least a decade of my adulthood emotionally detoxing from the spiritual poison I had ingested as a child.

But then my fiancé (later my husband), a sweet, gentle man, talked me into attending church with him. I figured that if he went to church and was still nonjudgmental, maybe not all churches were painful places to be. That hunch turned out to be right.

Yes, there are plenty of churches and individuals who twist the Bible's teachings into something damaging and ugly. But there are many who do not.

Please don't give up hope. And please do continue your wonderful Thanksgiving and Christmas tradition of serving others. You may never know how many people you served a little helping of hope.

Anonymous said...

I just don't that church is a good place for me to be. As a child I attended Lutheran School where I gained a wonderful education and something that I carry with me as I walk through every step of my life. The need to question till I understand. An understanding of a loving, caring, compassionate, understanding, God who's smiling face warmed the hearts of all people who passed with in his sight. A God who would never judge a man on how he feels about his countries leader, or the place he chose to place his love but more in how he treated his fellow man. The God I see in churches today is a snarling angry man that seems more like a ignorant man than anything holy.

Churches in the town I live in are... as far as I'm concerned evil. I moved here about 3 years ago from Cleveland, Ohio. To a small town in the hills of Pa. The apartment building I moved into is across the street from a church ( I love to hear bells in the morning) that for 5 years allowed people that lived in the building to park in the lot next door. I was also the first black man to move into this part of town. It took them, the church, 3 days to tow my car at first they tried to say my race had nothing to do with it. I found out that they had different words when my wife (to be) went there on another matter. Why would she hear something different? Easy she on the other hand is not black.

I have seen this anger and ugliness growing in most churches on TV on the radio. Fellowship is not big on my list nor am I ready to be judges for how I choose to live my life. I think it is better for me to walk the walk on the path alone and talk the talk to myself. I do know a few people that are avid church goers who's company I enjoy and think like you do that the church as it is being portrayed today is not the church as it should be. Churches are buildings, a church is a community and I do not wish to be a part of a community that is more interested in a building than the man who sleeps in the street.

So keep up the good work, speak out, rage, dance and celebrate the glory you feel in your church and in your community. Remind others that God has a smile.

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

Remind others that God has a smile.

I like that, Grumpymann. Thank you for that wonderful image. And I think that despite your pen name, you have a smile too.

Peter K Fallon, Ph.D. said...

Nice Post, Mom.

I honestly believe that there are more of "us" than of "them," and that if we keep concentrating on and living the message of the Gospel, we can continue to make the world better, in spite of the "christians" we see on the news.

I'm linking your post on my blog IN THE DARK.

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

Thanks very much, Dr. Fallon. I'll return the linking favor because I like what I see on your blog. And hey, I'm a former journalist. Nice to hear from another journalist.

Grumpymann said...

Guess I should sto hideing in the dark and speak for myself so I did I started a blog of my own. Thinks for the kick in the ass I needed

hokkaidoabbey said...

I don't have much to add except that I appreciate reading all these positive posts. I wish that Christians who were following Christ's messages of tolerance and love stood out more.

erinberry said...

A very nice, positive post - I like your blog, editormom :)

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

Thanks, erinberry. I just spent some time wandering around your blog. Very enjoyable—and right on target. I'm happy to meet you. Best wishes for many wonderful years with your Glaswegian prince.

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