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McKenna
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I'm just curious what denominations everyone is! Where do you go to church to express your Progressive Christianity? Or do you not attend a church? Which denomination do you feel is most compatible with PC? Why?

 

I personally have attended a UU church for a little over a year. I'm thinking about trying out the UCC church nearby, but I'm not sure yet. I'm happy in my UU church and I may just stay there since I'm finally feeling comfortable there :D

 

Btw, I wasn't sure where to place this thread, so I just sort of guessed. :)

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  • 3 weeks later...

I am 37 and joined a church for the first time, last summer. I joined an open and affirming United Church of Christ. I had, in the past, regularly attended other denominations (from the time I was conceived). In my mid 20s I stopped going to church with a few exceptions at all. I was too frustrated with the ignorance by those who claimed to be Christians. I still get very frustrated by the hate perpetuated in God's name by Christians. There is a wide variety of beliefs within my congregation including some Jewish people who like the open and affirming and social action that takes place there.

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I have not found that denominations are consistent enough so that you could make a “national” choice for instance between UCC and UU (or even between UCC and Presbyterian/United Methodist/Disciples/Episcopalians). I have lived in several locations around the country and tried to find the most progressive group wherever I lived. The best church I ever attended was Montclair Presbyterian Church in Oakland CA when Duke Robinson was there. They have changed since he left. Since then I have found UCC and UU groups to attend depending upon where I lived. Presently the most Progressive group within 50 miles of me is an Episcopal group. I think Progressive Christianity cuts across denominational lines now but as you may have noticed I am interested in a new denomination that would identify itself someplace between UU and UCC. I have appreciated discussions on this website about denominations and how we organize based upon Progressive Christianity. Trust your heart about where you are now-sounds like you may want to stay where you are.

P.S. Thanks for the reference to John Murray, an itinerant Univeralist preacher (1741-1815) who brought the Universalist/anti Calvinism message to our shores from England.

Edited by David
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I am a Quaker (Religious Society of Friends) and attend an 'unprogrammed' Meeting for Worship. The unprogrammed tradition consists of silent worship...members and attenders sit silently in the Meeting room and await on a personal, direct revelation or illumination from God and Christ. The Religious Society of Friends is a Christian-based Faith that traces its roots back to the mid-17th Century in England. The unprogrammed meeting tradition has no pastor, no structured service, no hymns or music, and no communion activities. It is based upon the Truth that God and Christ are within us all and can be directly experienced without outside mediator, ceremony, or symbols. This Measure of God and Christ Within is referred to simply as The Light Within. Quakers hold that all people, ALL people, regardless of who they are or where they live, have this measure of God and Christ within to act upon or ignore as they so choose. This understanding as the Truth has established Quakers as being historically opposed to all forms of war and violence. I came to the Religious Society of Friends from the United Methodist Church after wrestling with the problems of lesbian, gay, and women's rights within the UMC and political issues such as the current oil war in Iraq. The Quakers meet my Faith and moral understandings closer and without compromise more than than any denominational church or religion.

Edited by Russ
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I am 37 and joined a church for the first time, last summer. I joined an open and affirming United Church of Christ. I had, in the past, regularly attended other denominations (from the time I was conceived). In my mid 20s I stopped going to church with a few exceptions at all. I was too frustrated with the ignorance by those who claimed to be Christians. I still get very frustrated by the hate perpetuated in God's name by Christians. There is a wide variety of beliefs within my congregation including some Jewish people who like the open and affirming and social action that takes place there.

 

Wow, Jewish people in a Christian church? It must be very open...that's nice to hear! :)

 

I have not found that denominations are consistent enough so that you could make a “national” choice for instance between UCC and UU (or even between UCC and Presbyterian/United Methodist/Disciples/Episcopalians). I have lived in several locations around the country and tried to find the most progressive group wherever I lived. The best church I ever attended was Montclair Presbyterian Church in Oakland CA when Duke Robinson was there. They have changed since he left. Since then I have found UCC and UU groups to attend depending upon where I lived. Presently the most Progressive group within 50 miles of me is an Episcopal group. I think Progressive Christianity cuts across denominational lines now but as you may have noticed I am interested in a new denomination that would identify itself someplace between UU and UCC. I have appreciated discussions on this website about denominations and how we organize based upon Progressive Christianity. Trust your heart about where you are now-sounds like you may want to stay where you are.

P.S. Thanks for the reference to John Murray, an itinerant Univeralist preacher (1741-1815) who brought the Universalist/anti Calvinism message to our shores from England.

 

What denomination would that be? Or are you speaking of a hypothetical denomination?

 

I'm sure you're right that it varies across the nation. Thanks for your advice :) I'm moving in about a year and a half and I figure I'll do some exploring then. For now I'll probably stay in UU :)

 

I am a Quaker (Religious Society of Friends) and attend an 'unprogrammed' Meeting for Worship. The unprogrammed tradition consists of silent worship...members and attenders sit silently in the Meeting room and await on a personal, direct revelation or illumination from God and Christ. The Religious Society of Friends is a Christian-based Faith that traces its roots back to the mid-17th Century in England. The unprogrammed meeting tradition has no pastor, no structured service, no hymns or music, and no communion activities. It is based upon the Truth that God and Christ are within us all and can be directly experienced without outside mediator, ceremony, or symbols. This Measure of God and Christ Within is referred to simply as The Light Within. Quakers hold that all people, ALL people, regardless of who they are or where they live, have this measure of God and Christ within to act upon or ignore as they so choose. This understanding as the Truth has established Quakers as being historically opposed to all forms of war and violence. I came to the Religious Society of Friends from the United Methodist Church after wrestling with the problems of lesbian, gay, and women's rights within the UMC and political issues such as the current oil war in Iraq. The Quakers meet my Faith and moral understandings closer and without compromise more than than any denominational church or religion.

 

I love Quakerism. I can definitely see how it would fit with Progressive Christianity. I thought that the UMC had a campaign for GBLT rights, though? "Open doors, open hearts, open minds" or something like that?

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Hello McKenna

It is true that UMC's slogan is "Open hearts ,open doors " ,but as des pointed out ,within mainline denominations there are conservative movements which try to pull these denominations to the right. The UMC has one and I'm sure Presbyterians and Epicopalians have them too . They can threaten to withhold their pledges to the denomination or to leave altogether.

 

Like Russ I left the UMC. I went to the UCC about two years ago. They have their problems too but I like the autonomy of the individual churches. I grew tired of the constant bickering about GLBT issues and the top-down organization. There certainly are liberal UMC chuches but they still must follow the laws of their conferences.

 

 

MOW

Edited by MOW
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Hello McKenna

It is true that UMC's slogan is "Open hearts ,open doors " ,but as des pointed out ,within mainline denominations there are conservative movements which try to pull these denominations to the right. The UMC has one and I'm sure Presbyterians and Epicopalians have them too . They can threaten to withhold their pledges to the denomination or to leave altogether.

 

Like Russ I left the UMC. I went to the UCC about two years ago. They have their problems too but I like the autonomy of the individual churches. I grew tired of the constant bickering about GLBT issues and the top-down organization. There certainly are liberal UMC chuches but they still must follow the laws of their conferences.

MOW

 

Sigh. It seems that every denomination is split between liberals and conservatives (except the obvious ones that are, well, all conservative). Do you think we'll see any major changes in the next few decades, with these denominations kind of heading off in one direction or another? It seems likely to me...the tension between the two sides has to boil over at some point. I think it's already kind of starting to, with the breaking off of a couple of Episcopalian (I think?) churches from the main denomination over GLBT stuff.

 

Would this be a positive thing? I'm not sure. I'd love to have a denomination that was solidly liberal but at the same time the liberal/conservative divide causes so much, well, division...it's unfortunate.

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I think it would be awesome for there to be a solidly liberal denomination... but... I think for that to happen it almost has to start from scratch... I think it would need to clearly state it stances on the current issues that divide...

 

That however is not the tricky part... :D I think the real trick is then keeping an open mind and heart to the new things that will in the future be the dividing issues...

 

That is where we seem to drop the ball as humans... :(

 

If we look back at the history of faith there have been many ground breaking liberals... but many of the denominations that were born out of those movements at some point dropped anchor and said this is where the journey took us...

 

But alas... the road does go ever on...

 

I at one point dropped anchor... I hope by the grace of God I don't do it again... :P

 

Peace & Love

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I think it would be awesome for there to be a solidly liberal denomination... but... I think for that to happen it almost has to start from scratch... I think it would need to clearly state it stances on the current issues that divide...

 

That however is not the tricky part... :D I think the real trick is then keeping an open mind and heart to the new things that will in the future be the dividing issues...

 

That is where we seem to drop the ball as humans... :(

If we look back at the history of faith there have been many ground breaking liberals... but many of the denominations that were born out of those movements at some point dropped anchor and said this is where the journey took us...

But alas... the road does go ever on...

 

I at one point dropped anchor... I hope by the grace of God I don't do it again... :P

 

Peace & Love

 

Hm, that's actually very true. A tad discouraging... :(

 

But, you never know. I truly think we're on the verge of some major change in the way religion and Christianity are viewed. Whether it will be good or bad for moderate/liberal/progressive believers...I'm not sure.

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Sorry McKenna :(

 

I didn't mean to discourage ya...

 

I meant it as a general ENcouragement to myself and everyone to keep our eyes and hearts open :D

 

Peace & Love

 

I think many denominations are moving in a greater spirit of cooperation. I think ideally there is mutual tolerance and interplay between the various points of view. Unfortunately, that does not happen and it is on both sides. Conservatives can be intolerant but so can liberals. In fact a lot of the nasty name calling and threats of secular legal action to hold on to property are being issued by liberals within the Episcopal church. The whole thing ends up being rather frustrating to moderates.

 

Bishop Schori sounds a hopeful note and a rather reasoned approach (see clip): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlb84tnyn8k

I think the likely outcome is that the Episcopal Church will be ejected from the World Wide Anglican Communion. I am not sure that is terribly troubling to some in the Episcopal hierarchy (and laity) who see this issue in terms of doing what they see as the right thing (following the Gospel of Christ) and preserving their independence. I think there is a feeling that to try and give in to conservative voices in the Communion would mean abandoning principle and those who have been marginalized. The majority of voices in the national Episcopal Church will not do it and I think would rather turn inward to other like minded churches than outward to a Communion that wants them to abandon these people and principles.

 

One very hopeful note is that the members of Churches Uniting in Christ (CUC) representing the Episcopal Church, the United Methodist Church, International Council of Community Churches, the Presbyterian Church USA, the United Church of Christ, and three or four other bodies are working (have been) towards intercommunion and pulpit sharing. They are busily overcoming one of the last hurdles (Episcope - ie what it means in tmers of Bishops and succession). These bodies are progressive bodies and this bodes well for them having intercommunion (while maintaining unique identity like the ELCA & ECUSA did) and forming a large progressive front to carry forward the gospel message. Progressive churches have much tooffer but they need to have a stronger voice such as this with which to share a moderate message.

 

North

Edited by North
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