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Author Topic: Poor White Trash and the Church  (Read 8517 times) Average Rating: 0
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ozgeorge
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« Reply #45 on: September 07, 2007, 10:10:33 AM »

only he is more in the public eye.
Then he should be more careful, shouldn't he.

Mel has done more than either you or me though to promote Christ in the public sphere and his movie had a tremendous impact. 
And I put it to you that the only people interested in the movie were gore-fest buffs and people who already believed in Christ anyway, but needed an emotional experience to boost their wavering faith. You are looking at the film as a Christian. If you can find me three atheists who became Christians because of "The Gospel According to Mel", I'll eat my hat.
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« Reply #46 on: September 07, 2007, 10:18:56 AM »

So, if there is no truth in the statement that the OCA is effeminate and prissy, and therefore not "putting off the gutter people", then
A) There is absolutely no truth in what GOCTheophan said (i.e., it is without truth), and
B) Something else must be putting "gutter people off" from joining the Church.

Ok George, my anger was raised in this thread but since we are colleagues on this forum and friends as well, I am going to try to explain what I mean very carefully and respectfully so as to not fuel the fire.  I apologize if my frustration was evident in previous posts.

I think the problem with Theophan's post is one of generalization.  I do not agree for the record that the OCA is effeminite and prissy. However, that being said, I would be dishonest to myself and the people with whom, over the years in private, I have discussed this issue (because myself and these other people have noticed and experienced this problem), if I did not state that in my experience, I have met more than a few effeminite and prissy clergy and laity, some of whom presented a very demasculized version of Orthodoxy, over the years from this and other mainstream jurisdictions, and that this was very offputting to me and these other persons (not all of whom were men by the way) as well--and I am not exactly the most uber-masculine person that would normally "stand up for manhood" and all that kind of thing. 

People more intelligent than I have noted the feminization of modern Christianity and I tend to agree that this effeminancy of some clergy especially is part of the problem in presenting Orthodoxy to "white trash" people (most of my family would fit this category).  In some conversations I have had, it is hard enough to get the idea of a man "wearing a dress" (I have heard this before) and add on that he is prissy? What kind of image does that give of our clergy? Is this universally true? No! But is it true in some parts and is there a perception of it among some? Yes. So it is something that should be considered I think.

I would be equally suspicious of the Protestant "Promise Keepers" kind of thing coming to Orthodoxy, but I think both are examples of extremes.
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« Reply #47 on: September 07, 2007, 10:21:55 AM »

Then he should be more careful, shouldn't he.

Yes, I agree.

Quote
And I put it to you that the only people interested in the movie were gore-fest buffs and people who already believed in Christ anyway, but needed an emotional experience to boost their wavering faith. You are looking at the film as a Christian. If you can find me three atheists who became Christians because of "The Gospel According to Mel", I'll eat my hat.

I saw the movie and was in no need of an emotional experience to boost my faith. I enjoyed it and felt that it was a welcome alternative to the other fare at movies.  I enjoyed seeing the issue of Christ being discussed in public, both pro and con, it raised the issue back into the public discussion.  Did it convince any atheists? Probably not. Did it help strengthen the faith of weaker members of the Christian faith? Perhaps, and that was a very important gain. It also showed that Christians can make successful movies and engage our culture; I think that was its most important effect.
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« Reply #48 on: September 07, 2007, 10:24:06 AM »

ozgeorge,
So much for the concept of parody, as you attempted with this topic versus the 'ebonics' thread, making any real progress. <sigh> It's going to be a long day...
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« Reply #49 on: September 07, 2007, 10:28:42 AM »

ozgeorge,
So much for the concept of parody, as you attempted with this topic versus the 'ebonics' thread, making any real progress. <sigh> It's going to be a long day...

Only if you stay logged in all day Wink
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ozgeorge
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« Reply #50 on: September 07, 2007, 10:33:05 AM »

Anastasios,
I guess I'm having trouble understanding this "de-masculinization" thing. And frankly, I don't think "intelligent" people are pushing the issue. In fact, quite the opposite, including people who have been banned from this forum:
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,4252.0.html
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,4249.0.html
What exactly do you mean by "effeminate" Orthodox clergy?

Αριστοκλής,
Never fear! Why not split off this "effeminization of Christianity" series of posts and meld it to this thread: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,4252.0.html  Wink
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« Reply #51 on: September 07, 2007, 10:35:37 AM »

No more headaches for the mod on hydrocodone today!
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« Reply #52 on: September 07, 2007, 11:03:30 AM »

Anastasios,
I guess I'm having trouble understanding this "de-masculinization" thing. And frankly, I don't think "intelligent" people are pushing the issue. In fact, quite the opposite, including people who have been banned from this forum:
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,4252.0.html
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,4249.0.html
What exactly do you mean by "effeminate" Orthodox clergy?

Αριστοκλής,
Never fear! Why not split off this "effeminization of Christianity" series of posts and meld it to this thread: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,4252.0.html  Wink

Dear George,

This is the kind of stuff I am talking about, not Wheeler's bizarre rantings:

http://www.amazon.com/Church-Impotent-Feminization-Christianity/dp/1890626198
http://www.amazon.com/Why-Men-Hate-Going-Church/dp/0785260382/ref=sid_dp_dp/103-1156970-1234260

A few years ago, I think even on this forum (would help if we had a predictable search function!) people discussed this issue. Here is a recent discussion on a blog I found by googling to see if I was the only lone crazy person on earth that thought about this subject (because sometimes I actually do wonder if I am off in la la land!): http://www.timellsworth.com/?p=2017

What I mean by effeminate Orthodox clergy are men that, regardless of what some might label their sexual orientation exhibit the dictionary definition of being effeminate:

Quote
American Heritage Dictionary - Cite This Source
ef·fem·i·nate       (ĭ-fěm'ə-nĭt)  Pronunciation Key
adj. 

   1. Having qualities or characteristics more often associated with women than men. See Synonyms at female.
   2. Characterized by weakness and excessive refinement.

Why this might be a problem is that in a "white trash" environment, men often have a hard time relating to such men.

To me, this is not directly related to whether someone has homosexual temptations, I want to make that clear. My concern in this thread is solely about people who exhibit nonstandard ways of acting adversely influencing people who may be described as less refined and able to make nuanced distinctions (i.e., white trash people, the subject of this thread).

I am sure the blue collar workers reading this thread are fuming about the frequent allusion to white trash culture and screaming at their monitor, "not all of us are white trash!" so just wanted to make that clear as well. I realize this thread started as a parody/satire and morphed.

Anastasios
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ozgeorge
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« Reply #53 on: September 07, 2007, 11:11:15 AM »

My concern in this thread is solely about people who exhibit nonstandard ways of acting
I'm afraid you are going to have to give me some clear examples of the Orthodox clergy you have seen acting in "non-standard ways" so that I can understand what you mean by "non-standard ways".
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« Reply #54 on: September 07, 2007, 11:15:19 AM »

I'm afraid you are going to have to give me some clear examples of the Orthodox clergy you have seen acting in "non-standard ways" so that I can understand what you mean by "non-standard ways".

Lisping, giggling like girls, zipping my jacket up and down when I disagreed with a priest (that bugged my wife!), sexual innuendo relating to strong masculinity (coming from someone being effeminate), excessive hugging and patting, "nuh uh you DIDNT!" [female ways of speaking], etc.

That kind of thing is off putting.
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« Reply #55 on: September 07, 2007, 11:26:32 AM »

Lisping, giggling like girls, zipping my jacket up and down when I disagreed with a priest (that bugged my wife!), sexual innuendo relating to strong masculinity (coming from someone being effeminate), excessive hugging and patting, "nuh uh you DIDNT!" [female ways of speaking], etc.

That kind of thing is off putting.
OK. I think I understand what you mean. Certainly not the kind of Priest I would send to mission anywhere or to anyone- rich or poor.
But I have never come across such a Priest in my 41 years.
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« Reply #56 on: September 07, 2007, 11:30:15 AM »

OK. I think I understand what you mean. Certainly not the kind of Priest I would send to mission anywhere or to anyone- rich or poor.
But I have never come across such a Priest in my 41 years.

My experience may be atypical because having been at a seminary, I was exposed to more priests numerically speaking than most people.  I hope that it is uncommon and that these fellows were put in appropriate places where this issue would not be a problem for the flock. I also admit that my argumentation has been mostly anecdotal and I am glad we were able to take this in a productive direction.
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« Reply #57 on: September 07, 2007, 11:31:54 AM »

OK. I think I understand what you mean. Certainly not the kind of Priest I would send to mission anywhere or to anyone- rich or poor.
But I have never come across such a Priest in my 41 years.
Of course you haven't. You're in Australia. Way too primitive for the 'sensitive' types.  Cheesy
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« Reply #58 on: September 07, 2007, 11:43:53 AM »

I am glad we were able to take this in a productive direction.
Me too.
I still think Mel's movie reeks though. Wink
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« Reply #59 on: September 07, 2007, 12:22:13 PM »

Lisping, giggling like girls, zipping my jacket up and down when I disagreed with a priest (that bugged my wife!), sexual innuendo relating to strong masculinity (coming from someone being effeminate), excessive hugging and patting, "nuh uh you DIDNT!" [female ways of speaking], etc.

That kind of thing is off putting.

I've known only a handful of priests who fit this description; however, I can think of at least one that fits this description who is also one of the better priests I know and who is quite well loved by the students at Holy Cross (I'm sure any students or graduates of said institution have a pretty good idea of who I am talking about...he tends to be a bit too conservative for my tastes, but he's certainly a good person).

Personally, I would have thought that character were more important than speech impediments, manner in which someone laughs, and culturally influenced idiomatic constructs...but what would I know.

It sound to me like the real problem at hand is something called education and affluence, my family may have come from the backwoods of Kentucky, my great grandfather may have lived his live as a vagabond, but my grandparents and parents made something of themselves, and I managed to acquire an education. The net result? It is no longer necessary to conduct oneself in the manner of an uncouth neanderthal to be secure in their sexuality ('Ugg strong, Ugg manly, Ugg tough, Ugg fertile, you not like Ugg, you not man.'). This is the 21st century, cultural norms have evolved for both men and women. A woman who is not strong and independent is simply not respected, likewise a man who is domineering and belligerent will be ostracized from polite society. It may seem that women are expected to be more 'masculine' and men more 'feminine', but ultimately a single standard of rationality is applied across the board; and the emotionally influenced extremes of gender dimorphism simply do not cut it anymore.

As far as the 'white trash' I wouldn't worry about them too much, the underclasses are generally a couple generations behind the rest of society...they'll catch up and become accepting of our (post-)modern cultural norms in a few decades. However, if we cater to them in the here and now we will alienate the driving segments of our culture and will be turned on by the current underclasses when they catch up in a few decades time.
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« Reply #60 on: January 05, 2008, 02:30:07 PM »

....the Blackfoot or Crow or Salish man or woman or teen (or Hopi or Navaho or....) on a reservation

Woo-hoo~ Someone knows who the Salish are! We have a long history of "Christianity" but it is not really Christianity. This is what most American indians know in my area;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Shakers

Growing up the Shakers became the dominant religous force. To the extent that if you were not Shaker, you weren't truly an Indian. A great amount of my family were castigated for leaving the Shaker religon behind.
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« Reply #61 on: January 05, 2008, 02:42:52 PM »

Woo-hoo~ Someone knows who the Salish are!

 Smiley  I grew up in Montana.  So I know more of the Inland Salish, not so much of the ones to the west.

Pleased to meet you here. My only native American line is from the Cherokee long ago.

Ebor

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