2018/12/24

Boomer Solipsism Still Ruining the Church

clown mass

To no one's surprise, a generation of narcissists is surprised that distorting the faith in their image is making the youth flee in droves. H/t Rawle Nyanzi
You didn’t misread that, I didn’t say irrelevant, I said RELEVANT. We’ve taken a historic, 2,000 year old faith, dressed it in plaid and skinny jeans and tried to sell it as “cool” to our kids. It’s not cool. It’s not modern. What we’re packaging is a cheap knockoff of the world we’re called to evangelize.
As the quote says, “When the ship is in the ocean, everything’s fine. When the ocean gets into the ship, you’re in trouble.”
I’m not ranting about “worldliness” as some pietistic bogeyman, I’m talking about the fact that we yawn at a 5-minute biblical text, but almost trip over ourselves fawning over a minor celebrity or athlete who makes any vague reference to being a Christian.
We’re like a fawning wanna-be just hoping the world will think we’re cool too, you know, just like you guys!
Our kids meet the real world and our “look, we’re cool like you” posing is mocked. In our effort to be “like them” we’ve become less of who we actually are. The middle-aged pastor trying to look like his 20-something audience isn’t relevant. Dress him up in skinny jeans and hand him a latte, it doesn’t matter. It’s not relevant, It’s comically cliché. The minute you aim to be “authentic”, you’re no longer authentic!
The up-and-coming generation do not want guitars and felt banners. The do not seek accommodation with a world that has always seemed at best nonsensical and at worst vindictively hostile. "Connecting with the youth" does not mean affecting the trappings of youth culture from fifty years ago.

The grandchildren whose futures their elders preemptively foreclosed on want--need--structure and legitimate authority. They are not obsessed with novelty for novelty's sake. Their ambition is not to break the rules, for there are no rules left to break. They would prefer fire and brimstone, millstones, and "Suffer not a witch to live."

They are starved for truth and beauty. The Church has a rare chance to induct these restless, questing youth into mysteries that will at long last explain them to themselves. God is opening the door to a potential Christian moment in America. The Church's leaders have only to wake up and fulfill their solemn office.

There is evidence that the younger generations are taking the initiative and turning to Christ despite His ministers' best efforts to alienate them. Then again, the picture may not be as rosy as some suggest. The health of American Christianity is a complex and multifaceted issue.

To all priests and pastors: Your duty is to hand on the two millennia-old Deposit of Faith as you and your fathers before you received it. Do not be a stumbling block. Let the children come to Him.

28 comments:

  1. The local parish is so converged that we prayed that world leaders would fight to end racism.

    Not wisely guide their people back to God.

    Not end unsustainable deficit spending and the national debt.

    Not be with addicts in their darkest hours.

    Not a prayer for peace.

    Nope, racism is the single biggest crisis America faces.

    Oh, and hand over money to illegals who look at you with open scorn or you're sinning. (this message brought to you by the same forked tongue who lies about what the Bible says.)

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    1. Forgot to add:
      But at least the guitars are accompaniment for an organ and we still sing traditional religious songs.

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    2. They care more about external problems so they don't have to address internal ones that they caused.

      Alienation, depression, and suicide, skyrocket around them, but at least those exotic foreign people will look at them as heroes for letting them in to their special inner circle.

      It's not about helping anyone. It's about getting the biggest high from the least amount of effort.

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    3. Or they'll get smothered by an exotic pillow in a fourth rate nursing home.

      A question for Gen Y and Millenials: why do you hate guitar masses/services? That's really common.

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    5. Gen Y here, many of my friends are millennials and Gen Z. We hate guitar masses because the folk music and “contemporary music sounds dated and common rather than transcendent and sacred. Same for why many of us have switched to the Extraordinary Form (Missale Romanum 1962), Anglican Use, or Eastern rite when we can. Stupid hippy gatherings over a communal meal is just utter shit. I want to come to the Lord of Lords, my God, my Creator and my Savior, and receive Him on my knees and not as a free cracker at a tasting station in a Super Walmart.

      If ever there was a generation that needed damning for what they stole from the younger generations, what they refused to give us as our birth rite, it’s the Boomers. They can go to their reward and they can take their trashy, gay, guitar and drums, contemporvent, mundane event that is a waste of time and not remotely worthy of the Almighty God with them. God speed you bastards, and Merry Christmas.

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    6. Fun fact: For centuries, the pipe organ was the ONLY non-vocal instrument authorized for use in the Mass.

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    7. I don't go to Mass to be catered to. It do it to escape the modern world and reach Someone higher than myself.

      Guitar masses were created for boomers. They only stick around because of boomers. They will go away once boomers are gone. They are not transcendent because they were not created to be.

      Guitar masses are an inherently selfish form of celebration and always were.

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    8. If mass isn’t conducted in a form that’s close to 2,000 years old, it ain’t worth it.

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  2. It's easy to dunk on boomers, but I wish it didn't have to be.

    The local community is aging and falling apart, but absolutely no effort is spent on evangelizing or on discussing what to do about their absolute failure to pass on the faith. They do nothing about how poorly they catechized their children on shallow morality based on puddle deep pop songs and make no effort to correct any of their failures.

    So just replace them with a new demographic. It's easy and makes them feel good about themselves, their children be damned (as usual) which is just par for the course for boomers.

    I'd hoped they would grow wiser with age, but it never happened. I've personally witnessed boomers reach retirement, shut down, get fat, and hole away from the world while consuming whatever they want damn the rest. It is as if they devolved into teenagers.

    And I noticed they've gotten worse since their parents died. Their whole identity is based on "rebellion" and their complete refusal to accept the reality what they are in charge and caused their own misfortunes has broken them. It's as embarrassing as it is sad.

    I would have more pity for boomers if they would finally get out of the way and allow the rest of us to pick up the pieces, but they won't. Their parents regrettably stepped aside all too easy, but the boomers just won't do it.

    So while boomer dunking is easy, it is also entirely justified.

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    1. Many are most likely frozen in their sins, but I keep trying to reach them. Nothing is impossible for God's grace, after all.

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    2. JD:

      Bingo. So many boomers did such an awful job raising their children in the church because they left it because “Fuck you, mom and dad!” I have seen many boomers in then community I grew up in now return to church late in life because their spirit is hungry . . . but their kids and grandkids aren’t there. Talk about sad.

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  3. And of course, there are more witches than Presbyterians in America: https://amatopia.wordpress.com/2018/12/21/american-witchcraft/

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    1. Fake news, thankfully. A close, lifelong friend of mine is an orthodox Presbyterian. He recently debunked that story on Twitter. They're counting only the PCUSA, the mainline denomination, which is run by witches already. They recently considered replacing the elements of Holy Communion with milk and honey.

      There are far more real Presbyterians in the US.

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    2. Ah. That’s good to know. I know next to nothing about Presbyterians.

      That said, there are far too many witches and not enough burnings.

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    3. Right? I recently spoke to a Baby Boomer relative who honestly didn't know the Bible teaches witch-killing.

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    4. “Burn the witches” is up there with “helicopters rides”/Pinochet memes because the kind of people it scares know they’re evil and it freaks them out.

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  4. Let’s not forget that the Boomers murdered a solid 1/3rd of my and proceeding generations. That alone is enough to earn them the worst generation in a millenium award.

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    1. Cue "Aborted Sister", "Aborted Big Brother", and "Aborted GF" memes. Hide sharp objects.

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  5. Off topic, but I’ll be traveling so a I wanted to say Merry Christmas to our gracious host, Brian, and tonhis family, along with JD, Heian, Buscaroons, and other frequent commenters. God bless you and your families.

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    1. Merry Christmas to you and everyone here!

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    2. May the Lord guide you on your way. Thank you, and Merry Christmas to all!

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    3. Merry Christmas and safe travels to Durandel, Brian, JD, Alex, Harrison, Xavier, Buscaroons, and the rest of you.

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  6. Brian

    Merry Christmas to all!
    xavier

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  7. Why does the head-count study in the second link sample only Orthodox churches? Unless they meant small-o Rod Dreher orthodoxy, that couldn't be more arbitrary.

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    1. They mean orthodox in the strict theological sense. The article specifies that they counted Catholic, mainline Protestant, and evangelical churches. Ironically--and oddly--they didn't count the Orthodox churches.

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  8. It's our future now, ours and our childrens. God's spirit will not contend with man forever; into the ground they go, and all their consumption and self-obsession with them; yet my own parents and their parents go also.
    Somehow my family seemed to skip the boomer generation; I dread that it is somehow only delayed and will manifest as an unclean thing that latches onto my children.

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