Total Circus Feeling

Ich habe gelernt, „Abrechnungen“ mit ehemaligen Gemeinden vorsichtig zu lesen. Manchmal wird ziemlich dramatisiert. Nicht alles, was als erlebter „Machmissbrauch“ deklariert wird, war Machmissbrauch. Hin und wieder fehlt der Blick für die eigenen Anteile in den Eskalationsphasen. Das ist alles nachvollziehbar. Wenn die Dinge kochen (beispielsweise in einer Ehekrise), sind wir Menschen eben selten sachorientiert.

Trotzdem können Erlebnisberichte gelegentlich helfen und aufklären. Heute möchte ich auf so einen hilfreichen Bericht hinweisen. Verfasst wurde er von Elisabeth aus Oslo (Norwegen). Sie beschreibt in einer dreiteiligen Artikelserie ihre Erfahrungen mit einer Hipster-Gemeinde, die eines Tages von Hillsong übernommen wurde. Ihre Beobachtungen sind wirklich aufschlussreich und konfrontieren uns mit den Schattenseiten der gekünstelten Popkultur, die immer machtvoller in viele Gemeinden einzieht.

I began to read and dig into the word of God in a new way. I really liked the structure and order I saw in the church in the pages of the Bible.  It seemed simple and more like a bigger scale of what family and home life should be. Church is like your extended spiritual family.

Contrasted with that, what I found in the mega type churches is that they are not conducive to older people. They talk about being a church for everyone. But I find older generations being a part of the church a total myth. They are non-existent. I remember seeing some older people come to the leadership conference and I felt they must have come because they were very loyal grandparents of some of the kids in leadership… I mean why ever else would they listen to a volume cranked up 100 times over their hearing aids!!??  I realized it was not a church my own grandfather would have felt comfortable in. The pumped up music and disco lights would have been very overwhelming for him.

Even I got exhausted with the loud concert setting music every single week! It becomes such a performance. There was no point to sing along because I couldn’t hear myself sing, much less the person beside me! Even the Christmas service was pumped up, without a single slow classic song that we associate with Christmas. I asked the band why they had cut even the one classic they had done last year and I was told because there was not time in the program. And I thought, well there would be time if they would cut all the endless advertizing for upcoming events and the tithing pep talk!!!

Because when you look at the church on a micro level:

1.) Nobody noticed if I came to church or not, not even to the events for my own ministry team! And to be honest, I didn’t either notice if others came or not. One didn’t get to know people well enough to ask why they hadn’t come or was everything okay in their life or simply last week!!! Norwegians are reserved to begin with so it takes forever to get to know them anyway and in a mega church they really can hide away!

2.) All the joking about Holy things seriously made me feel unwell. It depressed and stressed me.

3.) We were all organs in a great machine called “the church” But over time I began to feel that my effort on the cafe team didn’t mean that much to anyone. People had to pay for the cakes and that bothered me how things cost. Like even the Christmas dinner people had to pay for. I did not get a church family feeling at all. When it all had to be so fancy and impressive. . .it all cost. Over time the disillusionment grew.

4.) To feel a part of the church one was meant to go to the cell group they assigned to you so you could “connect” with people. For me it just felt rather artificial and those five women or so at the cell group are not really people one met at church on Sunday anyway. It just was not filling the gap of making church feel like home. . .my spiritual family.

The lighting was often so dim I could hardly read my Bible. Most people brought their phones so that they could read the text glowing in the dark.

Hier geht es weiter (am Ende des Artikels finden sich die Links auf die weiterführenden Artikel): churchwatchcentral.com.

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