2.09.2007

"Jesus Camp" . . .


. . . is a fascinating documentary. It raises the question of how quickly and how intensely children should be indoctrinated into the religion of their parents. For all of you that ever attended a Baptist church camp, you'll have some flashbacks.

And it made me recall a conversation I had with a female friend [Edit: who was Baptist] while I was in college. For whatever reason, I had said to her in a passing conversation, "Isn't it weird that if my parents had been Catholic that I'd be a Catholic?"

"Not me," she said. "I'd still be a Baptist."

I didn't have much to do with her after that.

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

I don't know what kind of camps you went to as a child or where, but I've been to Baptist Church Camps all my life, and it didn't remind me of a one.

Anonymous said...

It reminded me of a Charismatic-oriented camp. I'm trying to think through Barry's logic here. What if his parents had been Catholic. He might have been Catholic (unlike his Baptist friend.) What's the point, Barry? Were you roughed up at a Baptist camp? Were you abused in some way? Were you brainwashed? Did the camp experience turn you away from your Baptist roots? Was it something else? I think you hve a burr under your blanket about church and Christians.

Anonymous said...

no , i agree barron. if my parets were muslim, i would have been one also. don't say you wouldn't!

Anonymous said...

The religious track of the parents is more relevant than any inspiration from God upon the direction a child goes. That's why a person's "beliefs" are so shallow. There's no real independent inspiration. It's a self supporting religious system and cycle that just gets artificially perpetuated...and diluted so much over time that today 99% of people that profess to be Christians or that believe in God do so selectively, hypocritically, or just when it's convenient to their "real" life; in other words they don't really believe, but they have to act like they do.

Anonymous said...

raised in a pentecostal home, went to a baptist school from k-12 and married a catholic girl. I've never met a denomination where the majority of it's members have been such hypocritical, holier than thou morons than baptists. So yea, flashbacks and burr's all around.

Anonymous said...

A Christian parent usually feels commited to rearing their children in the denomination they attend and work in.

And as for camps, they are supposed to be fun experiences as much as learning about God.

The emotional side of it can get sticky. I think the adult "camps", the "walks", the "retreats", etc, can sometimes be no more than a spiritual high. Folks have to keep going back for a fix.

Don't do em' myself.

Sorry to break off subject.

Anonymous said...

Barry, why this sudden interest in making fun of Christians? What are you hiding? What are you guilty of that makes you want to malign people who have faith?

If you start this battle, you will open a door that you can't shut.

Interesting note, my word verification is "yzxsin"

dogbreath said...

If my parents were muslin, I would probably be a bed sheet.

Anonymous said...

Don't ya'll get Barry's point? Your parents' religion (or lack thereof) is the prime determinant in their children's beliefs. Truth, logic or morals come secondarily. The logic here is: the "right way" is the parent's way. But what child thinks their parents know anything about anything else? So why does their religious orientation have so much influence?

Think, child, learn, experience and really think. Don't be herded by spiritual charlatans.

Anonymous said...

Barry, you went to Baylor. So why do you hate Baptists so much? That's like somebody that went to Texas Tech hating Brokeback Mountain.

dogbreath said...

I grew up Baptist, but am no longer affiliated with that religion. I don't hate the Baptist religion. If it brings even one person closer to God, then it is a good thing.

I can't understand why the Baptist religion creates unnecessary, unbiblical rules, like prohibiting all drinking and dancing, even while many Baptists openly break these rules. That is largely why people say many Baptists are hypocrites.

Anonymous said...

Barry must've had a late night last night, out getting tanked up on the Northside. That's why he's not here approving all of our astute and witty comments.

dewey, cheatham & howe said...

Okay Barry, you need to set up a power of attorney allowing someone else to moderate this blog in your absense. When all comments are stopped, it's as bad as when the morning newspaper is not delivered.

Anonymous said...

The discipline of Sociology has long taught the socialization of the child, not just in religion, but politics, folkways, mores, and norms of society. It will also be good for you to know that many parents have little time to serve in church or
even have much influence in socialization of their children any longer. That is just one of many reasons our society has deteriorated.

Anonymous said...

You can find Jesus Camp on Google Video.

comment4U said...

I've actually got this docu. sitting in my Netflix pile. I dread watching it...have a feeling I will be one of those people thinking about my 3rd grade G.A. (Baptist Girls in Action) camp. [sigh] They scared the living hell out of me...no pun intended...

Anonymous said...

I have always felt that what is most important is my personal relationship with God through His Son Jesus....I am Baptist and I agree with many about what you say about my choice of religion...but is just that....my choice of religion (religion is after all man reaching up to God...and Christianity is God reaching down to man)....So it doesn't offend me because what I have comes from God. I am well aware of my religion's shortcomings....being judgemental is what bothers me the most. But I have never been in a Baptist church that spends time or effect downing drinking (now getting drunk is something different) or dancing

mzchief said...

Ahem...
I was raised in a family with DEVOTE Catholics as well as Jews. I attended Catholic schools until I went to university. As a child I only missed mass/church and catechism/Sunday school if I was PERSONALLY experiencing a near death experience and for NO reason EVER missed a holy day of observation.

My husband was raised in a Christian Science household and had NEVER been to a doctor or taken a pill until he was 25 years old. His 85 year old mother has NEVER been to a doctor.

BOTH of us believe RELIGION is for the most part a PILE of RUBBISH that has done MORE to keep people from truly KNOWING and ACCESSING God than has ANY other EVIL.

My point being, that just because someone is exposed to and FORCED to worship, while a child, the same religion as their parents does NOT assure that person will worship ANY religion when they are old enough to make their own decision regarding their PERSONAL relationship with God.

Anonymous said...

There's too many people confusing the word religion with denomination. Baptist is not a religion it is a denomination.
Just for a little more clarification too: Christianity is seperated into protestants and catholics. Christians all believe the same thing just have different doctrines. Do a little historical research.
Oh and by the way my verification word was UFOXSYRT. Ironic if you ask be since most Baptists are a little "spacey".

Anonymous said...

shut up, mzchief

Anonymous said...

mzchief - you certainly do make some good points.

And it is true that if a kid is forced to go to church, many just rebel and don't go at all when they grow up.

But my faith in God has convinced me (through life experiences) that if a child is exposed to God, through a church worship experience, or home worship, some seeds of faith are planted. We may never see those little faith seeds open and grow, but at some point in that child's life they will make a return.

God is powerful in the hearts of believers. Even in little children.

And we've given our Baptist friends a bad rap. I'm thankful for them.

Anonymous said...

What a bunch of garbage. Religion is all bllSht. I'd venture to guess we'll all get to the pearly gates and learn we all got it wrong. As for me and my house, we'll serve no one. Now don't misunderstand me. I believe in God and his son. I don't subscribe to mainstream religion because I fear we've all got it wrong. I won't spoon feed religious crap to my kids (well, here I am forcing my religion upon them). Think our kids are affected by our social or occupational choices? Think they'll be queer if we are? Wonder if they'll share whatever values we have. See it doesn't just extend to religion folks. On a final note...I was at the southern Baptist Convention in Grapevine some time ago when a woman in the conference I was attending actually said aloud that only Baptists were going to heaven. I moved my chair for fear was about her time to pass and I didn't want to get struck my lightening. I guess she was either stupid or didn't realize that not everyone in attendance was Baptist. People actually believe that crap. Come on y'all! Wake up! In the bible God's word speaks to us about love and none of us (myself included) have a clue what it means.

Anonymous said...

I can tell you from experience that I was forced to go to church as a child and I absolutely will not attend now that I am an adult. If I was sick and couldn't attend church then I couldn't leave the house all day. I despised it then and I can't make myself go now even though I feel like I need to expose my children to some sort of faith.

It is a difficult part of my life now and I am actually really lost on the situation.

Gleemonex said...

Jesus Camp is next on my Netflix queue, but it's apparently pretty popular, because it's showing as "long wait." I have to watch it, even though it's going to terrify me in re: the future of this country. This type of thing is WAAAY beyond sending your kid to VBS or telling them Bible stories (neither of which I plan to do, though I was raised as a Methodist and had a fine time of it). This is cult indoctrination, pure and simple, and it's scary as all get-out. Anyone who thinks it's just fine: Think for a moment if the religion in question here was Islam -- would this type of fervent, extremist, unthinking zealotry, inculcated in very young children and reinforced all their lives, bother you then? Perspective makes a difference ...

Anonymous said...

It's always been really interesting to me that some folks don't want the church until they get ready to die - or at least they want a person of the cloth to do the service. And the church is usually there for folks who want it.

If I were searching for a church home today, it would be difficult. So many seem to be inward rather than outward.

Anonymous said...

The entire 'Jesus Camp' thing saddens me because of the toxicity of the message it is sending to our young people. However, the majority of these posts sadden me even more because so many are obviously confused as to who Jesus Christ really is. Religion is derived completely from man and Jesus spent much of his time while on earth condemning those who were "religious." I am truly convinced that John the Baptist is simply refereed to as John in heaven. Faith in Jesus does not need to be prompted as in "Jesus Camp" and should be a very personal issue in which every individual reconciles for themself.

Many are obviously all too willing to roll the dice that Jesus is not for real, the bible is simply garbage and there is no heaven or hell. I would rather take my chances that Jesus is indeed the son of God, the bible is His inspired word, and both heaven and hell are indeed real places. What do I have to lose if I am wrong? What do you have to lose if you are wrong?

Even the demons believed in Jesus. The idea is to come to know Him, and believe me truly knowing Him has absolutely nothing to do with religion.

There comes a point in life where you just can't blame your upbringing or other "hypocrites" for not coming to know the true God. These simply will not fly as valid excuses when we all will be held accountable one day.

Anonymous said...

You got Texas Tech and Brokeback Mountain mixed up. Its the University of Texas and Brokeback Mountain that have everything in common. Austin has GAY rallies. Lubbock doesn't.