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» Ship of Fools   » Community discussion   » Purgatory   » Does Christianity have anything to say to the bereaved? (Page 3)

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Source: (consider it) Thread: Does Christianity have anything to say to the bereaved?
Freddy
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# 365

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quote:
Originally posted by Gramps49:
To say the least, that minister condemned the man to hell for committing suicide. The family was devastated.

I have been to services like that. The one that I remember best was a Catholic service for an 18 year-old who had committed suicide. The church was full to overflowing with teen-agers. The most terrible part about it was that although the priests were stern when addressing the congregation, you could hear them joking with each other afterwards in the vestry.

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"Consequently nothing is of greater importance to a person than knowing what the truth is." Swedenborg

Posts: 12829 | From: Bryn Athyn | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
SvitlanaV2
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# 16967

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Do churchgoing families really not know what their own denomination teaches about suicide, or about hell?

It must be a sign of secularisation that families might want a religious funeral, even though they have little knowledge of what the denomination in question or its clergy are likely to say about these matters. And these days the other guests are unlikely to know what to expect. Opportunities for upsetting the unwary must be great.

In spite of Martin60's Anglican damnationists, the CofE is mostly expected to provide inoffensive funerals for all-comers in England. However, it seems that ministers in other denominations might be able to pick up more of the demand if they could publicly guarantee not to upset mourners with any unpalatable theology.

Posts: 6342 | From: UK | Registered: Feb 2012  |  IP: Logged
Martin60
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# 368

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Oh it does SvitlanaV2, you just have to turn up on a Sunday to hear the damnationism, it's for the initiated. Despite the fact the clergy always introduce themselves to the theoretical non-Christian who's turned up for the first time who's never there. Even so it's often oblique, coded. The desperate are comforted with ambiguity. That the speaker DIDN'T explicitly say that whacko brother of yours who topped himself without muttering the sinner's prayer ... he dissed JESUS and he chose to burn. Comforted with "we don't know". We don't know what happens in the last breath down the tunnel of light. But it's there. Only a few weeks ago all adulterers were excluded, conservatively faithfully according to the inspired plain meaning of the text. Oh so elegantly, wittily, confessionally, coldly, murderously. The transcript is available.

There is NO trajectory of faith, hope and charity in the vast majority of Christianity.

[ 30. December 2016, 23:18: Message edited by: Martin60 ]

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Love wins

Posts: 16633 | From: Never Dobunni after all. Corieltauvi after all. Just moved to the capital. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Freddy
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# 365

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quote:
Originally posted by SvitlanaV2:
However, it seems that ministers in other denominations might be able to pick up more of the demand if they could publicly guarantee not to upset mourners with any unpalatable theology.

I do quite a few Swedenborgian funerals. A major part of the service is an explanation of the life after death, treating Swedenborg's descriptions as gospel. I'm not aware that I have upset anyone so far. Of course I may have missed it.

I did a service yesterday, and one of the family members, who had been unaware of their relative's beliefs and knew nothing of Swedenborg, said that the things I said were what he had always believed. He was beyond pleased.

This is such a common response that it happens almost every time. I think that people like having definite things said about the afterlife, especially since they are mostly positive things.

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"Consequently nothing is of greater importance to a person than knowing what the truth is." Swedenborg

Posts: 12829 | From: Bryn Athyn | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
SvitlanaV2
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Martin60

Oh, I wouldn't disagree with you. The world is full of strange things, and I'm sure this sort of thing happens in the churches you attend. My point was that the distastefulness of such churches leaves a great gap in the market (especially in the market for funerals) for churches of a different type .

However, due to my Nonconformist, and indeed schismatic roots, the notion that 'the church' offers damnationism and 'the people' have to put up with it frustrates me. It's a very establishment attitude. The reality is, anyone can set up their own congregation, and every Christian constitutes a part of 'the church'. So if 'the people' are crying out for non-damnationist churches, then surely they can have such churches! Unless they really believe the apostolic succession only relates to the CofE, or the RCC, etc., why must they wait until their priestly hierarchy deigns to give them what they want?

We've ended up in a difficult position, IMO due to secularisation. We praise unity and condemn schism, which sounds noble but it means we're fated to attend churches whose teachings we dislike, and can't do much about the situation except complain. The clergy feel no compulsion do to much about it, and it doesn't matter very much if members leave or simply age and die....


Freddy

I don't know if your denomination is at all evangelistic, but you clearly have an excellent selling point here if the response is so positive.

Posts: 6342 | From: UK | Registered: Feb 2012  |  IP: Logged
Martin60
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# 368

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The sheep are scattered yet huddled SvitlanaV2. Pastored by a tatterdemalion bag lady in motley with multiple male personality disorders.

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Love wins

Posts: 16633 | From: Never Dobunni after all. Corieltauvi after all. Just moved to the capital. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged



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