I’d like to post a disclaimer – you will see just how much of a bitch I can be. I seem to be on a “everyone is an idiot and I’m going to complain as much as I can” rant.
A couple weekends ago, we got some sad news from our pastor. The 18 year old son of a couple at church ended his life on Saturday. It sent shock waves through the church. How can this happen to a family that is so devout? If their faith was so strong, why did this young man chose to leave this world so early and cause so much pain to his parents?
What really surprised me is that although their son took his life on Saturday, the whole family was in church the following day, in their usual spot, like all was normal. I nearly gave myself whiplash when I saw them there. I don’t know how they mustered the energy and courage to leave the house so soon. Maybe it was the need to not be in the space where the boy had ended his life?
Needless to say, we didn’t have our usual service. Our pastor did his best to show support to this grieving family. The whole congregation sang louder and with more conviction than usual.
Of course, there was weirdness. People were asked to stand and offer prayer. Some did. Others did things that were cringe worthy. One guy half prayed/half sang….ok..
The resident gay guy (yes you read that correctly – he’s been praying the gay away) ran around the church passing out hugs to a very select crowd. Yup, the sucking up was on like donkey kong.
That was just the beginning of the weirdness though. During the course of the week, members of the congregation would stop by to check on them..ok, people were pretty much there almost 24/7.
People would be writing messages to the deceased and quoting scripture. He’s gone, folks, he can’t read this stuff.
Then there were the pictures posted all over social medial. Pictures of them in mourning, sitting together reading scripture, of the mother lying on the bed, trying to rest, and people on there with her, starting a pillow fight, laughing. They even had pics of the birthday party for the deceased, only he wasn’t there.
One woman, whom although is not malicious, is a nitwit, lifted and re-posted something from her son’s social media. Apparently her son is kind of jealous, because the deceased boy is now with Jesus….
If I were her, I would be concerned that the teens are going to attempt the same, and not playing “who loves Jesus most”.
Someone started a Go Fund Me page to raise $20,000. to have the boy buried back int he U.S.A., next to his grandfather. I have no words.
Then the actual funeral service. That was streamed – all 3.5 hours of it. They talked about how he ended his life (hung himself in the garage over night). I stopped watching at that point. Apparently they had one of the siblings read the suicide note.
A friend told me that at one point, the youth pastor and his sidekicks donned “counsellor” t-shirts. You know, to show they are…mental health professionals? Try again.
I’ve been watching this from a distance and have been forming my own opinions. Maybe it’s the time of the year; I tend to get a little cynical and loopie from lack of sunshine and a long harsh Winter. I think these folks are mostly all weird.
I find that there has been shameless showboating at the expense of this young man. Not only that, but the rest of the congregations has had to basically be put completely on hold, as if their lives do not matter.
As much as I like my pastor, I think I’m done with this church. I will be moving in 4 weeks and can’t see myself making the treck across the bridge every Sunday for a 4pm service, then all the way back.
I’ve been feeling this way for a while now. Unfortunately, I’m very much “familiarity breeds contempt” type of person. Perhaps this was just the excuse I needed to make the decision.
All to say, I would love to find a church where this type of weirdness is not habitual. A place where people are real. My pastor once summed it up perfectly, “just because you call yourself a Christian doesn’t mean you check your brains at the door”. That has always stayed with me, yet the congregation is full of deer caught in the headlight types.
I understand why so many have a distaste for folks who are believers, based solely on how they act.