More and More Tales of the Christ Weary:
Once more, the Rude Pundit presents tales from the strong-souled who have endured punishing proselytizing from the mouths and the hands of the righteous. We are victims no more, empowering ourselves to say, "You know what? Being born once was traumatic enough." From South Dakota to South Carolina, from Catholics, Methodists, and roll-on-the-ground-and-swallow-yer-tongue Baptists, your stories tell them all that we are oh, so, weary of your callow brand of Christianity. (With, you know, minimal editing and no vouching for veracity.)

From PC: The evangelicals are all too often Christ-free Christians. They are really in love with the good old days of the Old Testament. One such case involves some friends of mine. The family is Pentecostal. The father was a preacher. Both mother and father raised their children in what they believed to be the best way: liberal, Jesus-loving, and you-are-your-brother's-keeper.

The mother and father are old now, and still Jesus-loving liberals. But because they voted for John Kerry, one daughter is barely speaking to them. As far as she's concerned, anyone who questions George Bush is playing cards with the Devil. They wonder how this happened. As the mother said, "When did Christianity turn its back on the people?"

From Mike in Minneapolis: At age 12 or 13 I was still the all-American alter boy, going to church every Sunday, and Wednesday catechism. (Lent brought more and more church.) Fall was in the air and deer season was on. One Sunday, sitting in the pew listening to the sermon the priest started spouting out things I had never heard before. There was but one doctor in all of South Dakota who performed abortions at that time. Suddenly during the sermon, our spiritual leader (in a Catholic church) told us that if we saw this particular person out, we should feel obligated to shoot him and gut him and God would love us for it. I have never believed in the Catholic church since that moment.

From Robert S.: I attended Bob Jones University, the infamous southern fundamentalist Baptist school, from 1989-1995. Here's a few quick stories from my time there:

Two friends of mine who were dating were told to break up because the school didn't allow interracial dating. He was Korean-American, but lived his entire life in the US. She was American. The school finally got rid of the no interracial dating rule a couple of years ago. This was the mid-90s.

The school wouldn't allow us to receive the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition or even the summer J. Crew catalog featuring bikinis. Since by law they can't withhold our mail, the school called every guy who received these at the school post office up to the Dean of Men's office and asked for their individual permission to either throw the offending magazine out or have it sent to their home address.

Guys were kicked out for masturbating or if they were discovered to be gay. However, one girl I know had a roommate who was moved into her room, after she assaulted another girl who was sleeping in the middle of the night. So, she was a kind of aggressive lesbian I guess. She wasn't kicked out, just moved to another room. Apparently, her parents were big contributors to the school. Not saying she should've been kicked out necessarily. Just pointing out the hypocrisy.

No drinking, no dancing, no movies, no rock 'n roll. No jazz or big band for that matter. No kissing, no holding hands. No blow jobs, of course, although the school's initials are BJU. These rules all hold true to this day.

Evolution is hardly mentioned at all, except to disparage it with rebuttals forged from bad "science."

While I attended there, Bob Jones III, the school's then and current president (they like to keep it in the family, you see) outraged even some of the students and faculty when he declared that Billy Graham had done "more to harm the cause of Christianity in the 20th century than any other person." (quote from memory)

I ate with Dr. Bob III one evening at a banquet for the school's student media leaders. For conversation, he brought up a TV anchor he'd met at a conference or something who claimed to be a Christian, but he couldn't possibly be a Christian, Jones said, because he was holding a glass of wine in his hand at the time. (Not making this up. I had met the anchor before, too and it would never have occurred to me to question his Christianity.)

When I first came to the school, I worked at its electrical co-generation plant. This building was located across the street from some faculty housing and a few houses down from Dr. Bob's house. He complained to my boss that when we left the huge roller door open to this building it increased the noise, which he could hear at his home. The next time he noticed that one of my fellow employees left this door open, he fired my boss for it. My boss had a wife and at least one kid and was fired from his job for something he had no control over.

From Kris: My story dates back to the beginning of the end of the Vietnam War. My husband, already in the Air Force, decided he could no longer be part of the war machine and filed for conscientious objector status. He needed to have a member of the clergy say in writing that he was sincere in his beliefs. We went to the pastor of the church I'd been brought up in, the Missouri Synod of the Lutheran Church. I don't know if anything's changed in the last 30 years or so, but at the time it was about as Calvinistic and fundamentalist as Lutherans get. Anyway, the pastor was adamant on the necessity of war and the necessity of draftees to fight in wars. I said something to the effect of, "But what about the dropping of the atomic bomb? What about all those deaths in Hiroshima and Nagasaki? How can that be defensible?" To which he replied, "But think of all the Japanese who converted to Christianity from heathenism after that."

Send your stories of Christ-weariness to: rudepundit@yahoo.com.