Archive for May 19th, 2008

Six Flags Over Jesus

May 19, 2008

Thought this might be of interest to some. An interesting excerpt:

Don’t you think there’s an element of condescension in saying the congregants are using religion to escape from or cover up the problems in their own life? Don’t some of the members profoundly believe in God and find that religion serves a positive purpose in their lives?

In the introduction, I say that it’s a cliché for the snobbish, urbane writer to go hang around the rubes and pick on them for their primitive ideas. On some level, it’s kind of a villainous endeavor. But I tried to be aware of that the entire time and not be condescending in the way I treated these particular people. I tried to make them all out to be whole human beings. In these kind of mega-churches, what’s really striking is that there’s so little that’s like a genuine religious communion. They’re more like factories, like fast-food franchises, than they are like churches or communities.