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Author Topic: Up Late Last Night  (Read 8519 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: November 29, 2007, 12:43:14 PM »

I was up late channel surfing and was amazed (I guess I shouldn't be) of the number of televangelists and religious programming on late at night. All of the evangelical ilk, preaching, music videos, news from a "Christian" perspective, selling bibles, selling holy oil (this was a good one, the guy claimed that he could command me and the tv audience to the phone to call to get this oil). Preaching topics ranged from healing, to evidence of Christ's resurrenction, to living the abundant life, to casting off of demons, to how the apostles were no different from you and me. Men and women preachers. Suited and Hawaiian shirted. One guy has a mullet hair style. Some looked like Mr. Science and sat at a desk. The mormons were on discussing validity of the creeds (GO figure). If it was a show with an audience the audience was often mostly African American whether the preacher was Caucasian or not and often Southern (no offense my southern friends.) One televangelist did concentrate on serving the poor and preaching the gospel around the world. He was the exception, not the rule. His preaching was about helping others not yourself.

What's the point of this rant.
(1) In my pre-Orthodox days I would have enjoyed seeing the"Word of God" preached by so many. Later I realized that these guys are preaching primarily to the converted and not non-believers. I would have dismissed the "yahoos" as fringe elements and took comfort in the preaching of God's word. Later I realized many of the fringe guys and gals commanded a large following and lived quite a good life.

(2) Many of these people have egos' that I believe are fed by the non-litugical church model. This model emphasizes preaching and ergo the preacher. Is he/she good/bad, entertaining/boring, Bible based/psychobabble based . . . who knows.

(3) Post return to Orthodoxy I tend to view these guys/gals with disdain. The preaching is so "I" centered. I know Orhtodoxy has had its share of charismatic leaders and ego leaders. But I believe that a church administration coupled with a liturgical setting tends to downplay or root out such people.

Any way. What do I know. Thanks for listening to my rant. Any comments.
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« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2007, 12:51:21 PM »

I was up late channel surfing and was amazed (I guess I shouldn't be) of the number of televangelists and religious programming on late at night. All of the evangelical ilk, preaching, music videos, news from a "Christian" perspective, selling bibles, selling holy oil (this was a good one, the guy claimed that he could command me and the tv audience to the phone to call to get this oil). Preaching topics ranged from healing, to evidence of Christ's resurrenction, to living the abundant life, to casting off of demons, to how the apostles were no different from you and me. Men and women preachers. Suited and Hawaiian shirted. One guy has a mullet hair style. Some looked like Mr. Science and sat at a desk. The mormons were on discussing validity of the creeds (GO figure). If it was a show with an audience the audience was often mostly African American whether the preacher was Caucasian or not and often Southern (no offense my southern friends.) One televangelist did concentrate on serving the poor and preaching the gospel around the world. He was the exception, not the rule. His preaching was about helping others not yourself.

What's the point of this rant.
(1) In my pre-Orthodox days I would have enjoyed seeing the"Word of God" preached by so many. Later I realized that these guys are preaching primarily to the converted and not non-believers. I would have dismissed the "yahoos" as fringe elements and took comfort in the preaching of God's word. Later I realized many of the fringe guys and gals commanded a large following and lived quite a good life.

(2) Many of these people have egos' that I believe are fed by the non-litugical church model. This model emphasizes preaching and ergo the preacher. Is he/she good/bad, entertaining/boring, Bible based/psychobabble based . . . who knows.

(3) Post return to Orthodoxy I tend to view these guys/gals with disdain. The preaching is so "I" centered. I know Orhtodoxy has had its share of charismatic leaders and ego leaders. But I believe that a church administration coupled with a liturgical setting tends to downplay or root out such people.

Any way. What do I know. Thanks for listening to my rant. Any comments.

Its a great business venture to get into.  These folks have found the secret to a comfortable lifestyle. 
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« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2007, 12:58:00 PM »

Quote
(2) Many of these people have egos' that I believe are fed by the non-litugical church model. This model emphasizes preaching and ergo the preacher. Is he/she good/bad, entertaining/boring, Bible based/psychobabble based . . . who knows.

It's funny (to me, at least), that you mention this.  There are a few items floating around the Catholic blogosphere about a number of priests formed after Vatican II who, in response to requests from the laity in light of Pope Benedict's recent motu proprio freeing up the Missal of 1962 (aka the "old Latin Mass").  These priests commented on the fact that in using the extraordinary form, they feel liberated because of the micro-management of rubrics under that form.  They don't feel pressured to put on a show, so to speak, but are allowed to be subsumed into the rite itself and actually lead people in prayer in persona Christi as opposed to having to show his own personality.  These anecdotes are prime examples of how a true liturgical act can really bring one closer to God.

A good friend of mine has bounced around in a number of mainstream Protestant churches for the past decade or so because he wasn't too thrilled with the pastor for one reason or another.  He finally realized, though, that he shouldn't be going to church based on the personality of the preacher, but because he wanted to worship God.  He ended up in a continuing Anglican parish where he gets more orthodox by the week.  The fact that the pastor there is a tremendously gifted speaker is irrelevant; it's just a nice bonus.
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« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2007, 01:12:00 PM »

selling holy oil (this was a good one, the guy claimed that he could command me and the tv audience to the phone to call to get this oil).

That sounds like Robert Tilton. Was he on Black Entertainment Television? I think that's where his program is now.

Amazing to me that this fraud can still lead a multi-million-dollar "ministry" after his fall in the early 1990s.
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« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2007, 01:35:27 PM »

(2) Many of these people have egos' that I believe are fed by the non-litugical church model. This model emphasizes preaching and ergo the preacher. Is he/she good/bad, entertaining/boring, Bible based/psychobabble based . . . who knows.

You've hit the nail on the head here.  I can't count how many soon to be preachers I encountered in college (Southwest Baptist U) who were going into preaching with the idea that they'd be the head of some megalith of a church and be rich beyond their wildest dreams.  And naturally, none of the churches they had in mind were liturgical.  SBU was quite good at showing these preacher boys how to write the perfect three-point alliterative sermon and how to hire the perfect music minister (qualifications: must be able to get a gigantic choir to hit the right note and to sway in unison).  In effect, the show service is about the skills of the preacher and the choir, not about God at all.

Bleh.  Give me liturgy any day.
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« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2007, 04:21:39 PM »

EofK

It wasn't Robert Tilton. IT was some white guy with a mulet who kept saying something to the effect that "... as a man of god I command you to go to your phone and call the number on your screen..." He was based in Tulsa., OK. I forgot his name but not his hairstyle.  laugh
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« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2007, 07:44:41 PM »

Hm... I'm not familiar with the kooks anymore.  Smiley  Could be anybody!
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« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2007, 07:50:08 PM »

I forgot his name but not his hairstyle.  laugh
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« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2007, 07:56:32 PM »

Just got a mental picture:

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« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2007, 07:57:33 PM »

By the way, Schultz, love the avatar!   Grin  Cheesy
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« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2007, 09:05:56 PM »

It's 8:10 EST - - I wonder what awaits tonight on late night TV.  angel
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« Reply #11 on: November 29, 2007, 09:26:48 PM »


Just some good 'ol boys never meanin' no harm!
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« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2007, 10:29:50 PM »

It's 8:10 EST - - I wonder what awaits tonight on late night TV.  angel

You're making me jealous as I don't have a TV.  Smiley

I want me some tellyvangelists!




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« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2007, 09:09:42 AM »

Lubeltri:  What an artist  Shocked  Quite a montage  Roll Eyes

I didn't stay up late last night so I missed the evening freak show.  But instead I devised a theory. The USA is a consumer driven culture. It cost millions if not billions of dollars to support these "ministries." Thus, there must be demand for spirituality. If there were no demand these ministries would fold. Each has there own agenda and appeal, much like the different department and specialty stores. This goes hand in hand with my theory on illicit drugs. Cut demand and supply will be cut. Maybe for some these guys and gals are a "legitimate addiction."
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« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2007, 03:49:27 PM »

You have a good point. Many of these people preach a "feel-good" religion, especially Joel Osteen and Rick Warren. I imagine some people are attracted to someone who boosts their ego, regardless of what they actually do with the money.
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« Reply #15 on: November 30, 2007, 04:01:21 PM »



What...is he doing??? LOL.

 laugh

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« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2007, 04:03:16 PM »

Lubeltri:  What an artist  Shocked  Quite a montage  Roll Eyes

Thanks. I couldn't resist posting that Jerry Falwell waterslide photo. It's one of my favorite photos of all time. Smiley
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« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2007, 04:04:00 PM »



What...is he doing??? LOL.


Either praying or trying to solve a constipation problem. Wink
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« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2007, 04:05:55 PM »

You have a good point. Many of these people preach a "feel-good" religion, especially Joel Osteen and Rick Warren. I imagine some people are attracted to someone who boosts their ego, regardless of what they actually do with the money.

Lets face it, these evangelical gettogethers are a striped down, easy way to proclaim Christ without too much work or effort.  No fasting, no Holydays, no Eucharist, no confession, no sacraments, no Liturgical traditions, no saints to pray to, no Church fathers to worry about, etc. just show up and bring your bible and on with the show.  I mean, anyone of us could do this standing on our heads.
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« Reply #19 on: November 30, 2007, 04:06:57 PM »



What...is he doing??? LOL.

 laugh



They have medication for this sort of thing.  X-lax comes immediately to mind.
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« Reply #20 on: November 30, 2007, 04:08:37 PM »

Either praying or trying to solve a constipation problem. Wink

Your not getting it.  The tighter you close your eyes the faster the prayers get to heaven, that barring placing your hand on the TV screen which wisks prayers to God at light speed.

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« Reply #21 on: November 30, 2007, 04:20:38 PM »

Your not getting it.  The tighter you close your eyes the faster the prayers get to heaven, that barring placing your hand on the TV screen which wisks prayers to God at light speed.

You should have seen it when Pat and the gang used to speak in tongues on the 700 Club back in the 1980s.
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« Reply #22 on: November 30, 2007, 04:43:43 PM »

You should have seen it when Pat and the gang used to speak in tongues on the 700 Club back in the 1980s.

That, I would have loved to have seen.
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« Reply #23 on: November 30, 2007, 08:16:40 PM »

How did I miss them speaking in tongues?  I used to watch starting some time between 1986 and 1988.
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« Reply #24 on: December 01, 2007, 08:23:24 AM »

Quote
Lets face it, these evangelical gettogethers are a striped down, easy way to proclaim Christ without too much work or effort.  No fasting, no Holydays, no Eucharist, no confession, no sacraments, no Liturgical traditions, no saints to pray to, no Church fathers to worry about, etc. just show up and bring your bible and on with the show.  I mean, anyone of us could do this standing on our heads.

You hit the nail on the head. Frankly, I've come to believe that this is the way American's like it. To them it is uncomplicated religion, much like everything else. Uncomplicated driving, uncomplicated cooking, uncomplicated kids? The list goes on.
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« Reply #25 on: December 01, 2007, 09:11:12 AM »

I was up late channel surfing and was amazed (I guess I shouldn't be) of the number of televangelists and religious programming on late at night. All of the evangelical ilk, preaching, music videos, news from a "Christian" perspective, selling bibles, selling holy oil (this was a good one, the guy claimed that he could command me and the tv audience to the phone to call to get this oil). Preaching topics ranged from healing, to evidence of Christ's resurrenction, to living the abundant life, to casting off of demons, to how the apostles were no different from you and me. Men and women preachers. Suited and Hawaiian shirted. One guy has a mullet hair style. Some looked like Mr. Science and sat at a desk. The mormons were on discussing validity of the creeds (GO figure). If it was a show with an audience the audience was often mostly African American whether the preacher was Caucasian or not and often Southern (no offense my southern friends.) One televangelist did concentrate on serving the poor and preaching the gospel around the world. He was the exception, not the rule. His preaching was about helping others not yourself.

What's the point of this rant.
(1) In my pre-Orthodox days I would have enjoyed seeing the"Word of God" preached by so many. Later I realized that these guys are preaching primarily to the converted and not non-believers. I would have dismissed the "yahoos" as fringe elements and took comfort in the preaching of God's word. Later I realized many of the fringe guys and gals commanded a large following and lived quite a good life.

(2) Many of these people have egos' that I believe are fed by the non-litugical church model. This model emphasizes preaching and ergo the preacher. Is he/she good/bad, entertaining/boring, Bible based/psychobabble based . . . who knows.

(3) Post return to Orthodoxy I tend to view these guys/gals with disdain. The preaching is so "I" centered. I know Orhtodoxy has had its share of charismatic leaders and ego leaders. But I believe that a church administration coupled with a liturgical setting tends to downplay or root out such people.

Any way. What do I know. Thanks for listening to my rant. Any comments.

I remember when an agnostist friend of mine (the one who gave me the final push into Orthodoxy, may he receive his reward!) asked what was different from the televangelist and the bishop, I told him the bishop is answerable, the televangelist is not.

I've had a similiar experience as yours, watching with grizly fascination at how could anyone believe this.  It seems the "church" exists only to act as God's tax agent, collecting tithes, etc.  No explanation of what authority they arrogated to themselves.

I love the oil ones. When did this come up?  I've seen it a lot among them now.  But still, they won't have "sacraments."  That's too "dead church." Romophobia at its finest.

There are a few who I wouldn't put in this camp.  They're one prominent Christian Zionist preacher, who talks about the Bible, Faith, etc. Often hasn't a clue, but at least its recognizably Christian (as opposed to greed).

My son once, watching one these Christian types (I mean by that, sincere preachers not just interested in you tithe: my step father watches a lot of them), and he remarked "he's not Orthodox, but he's not lying" (his mother takes him  to her mega church, which he looks on with disdain "the church where we don't pray").  I explained that a lot of people aren't Orthodox, but that doesn't make them liars.  We're different just because we have the fullness, not just part, of the Truth.

Yes, they are very ego centered, even the Christian ones.  What I believe the Bible says, not what has been passed down from generations of Fathers and Mothers.  And making it up as they go along (hence the oil, should I have snake oil, or should I say serpent oil?).  No concept that the Church existed before me.



Btw, maybe I should mention I'm voting for Huckabee.

You've hit the nail on the head here.  I can't count how many soon to be preachers I encountered in college (Southwest Baptist U) who were going into preaching with the idea that they'd be the head of some megalith of a church and be rich beyond their wildest dreams.  And naturally, none of the churches they had in mind were liturgical.  SBU was quite good at showing these preacher boys how to write the perfect three-point alliterative sermon and how to hire the perfect music minister (qualifications: must be able to get a gigantic choir to hit the right note and to sway in unison).  In effect, the show service is about the skills of the preacher and the choir, not about God at all.

Bleh.  Give me liturgy any day.

Yes, my only remark on the megachurch is that a hundred years from now, after the pastor has made his millions, what will be left?

Nothing.

All flash, no substance. Christ died to make you wealthy.  Indulgences pale in comparison.  And no sacrifice, just feel good.  Notice, no Crosses? My son has at his mother's megachurch.  "They call that a church?  It's not a church, it's a mall" was his conclusion.  He's also said, describing the Easter show service, that "it's not really a church, it's more like a place where we sit and watch people talk and sing."

Btw my priest, Fr. Patrick Reardon is a SBU grad., so you get all kinds.

Lubeltri:  What an artist  Shocked  Quite a montage  Roll Eyes

I didn't stay up late last night so I missed the evening freak show.  But instead I devised a theory. The USA is a consumer driven culture. It cost millions if not billions of dollars to support these "ministries." Thus, there must be demand for spirituality. If there were no demand these ministries would fold. Each has there own agenda and appeal, much like the different department and specialty stores. This goes hand in hand with my theory on illicit drugs. Cut demand and supply will be cut. Maybe for some these guys and gals are a "legitimate addiction."

Lord, Thou has created us restless until we rest in Thee.  St. Augustine.

Self medicating isn't the answer, though.
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« Reply #26 on: December 01, 2007, 09:01:05 PM »

Quote
It's not a church, it's a mall" was his conclusion.

I came to the same conclusion upon visiting one once. There was ministry for every age group or interest level or station in life. Much like a mall that has all kinds of different stores appealing to all kinds of different consumers.
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« Reply #27 on: December 02, 2007, 09:56:00 AM »

Yes, my only remark on the megachurch is that a hundred years from now, after the pastor has made his millions, what will be left?
Nothing.  All flash, no substance. Christ died to make you wealthy.
Exactly.  There's nothing left for future generations except maybe a burden to out-perform their parents financially and what is to be done with those parishioners who fail to make the big bucks?  Some of the megachurches do offer financial counseling classes, but they seem to be an afterthought.

Quote
Indulgences pale in comparison.  And no sacrifice, just feel good.  Notice, no Crosses? My son has at his mother's megachurch.  "They call that a church?  It's not a church, it's a mall" was his conclusion.  He's also said, describing the Easter show service, that "it's not really a church, it's more like a place where we sit and watch people talk and sing."

Scary, isn't it?  I have noticed that these churches sweep the idea of sacrifice under the rug and yeah, they do tend to be sparse on crosses these days, both spiritually and in the decor.  I don't know if they're starting to view crosses as an icon as well and shying away from that or if it's an uncomfortable reminder of sacrifice they're not doing.  Your son is right, though.   These churches look less like churches and more like malls all the time, even down to having a Starbucks inside the church.  (No joke: The JRA Cafe is owned, I believe, by Starbucks and operated by church volunteers.)

Quote
Btw my priest, Fr. Patrick Reardon is a SBU grad., so you get all kinds.
Awesome!  To SBU's credit, they do have very good professors in the biblical studies department and I do believe they are part of the reason I came to Orthodoxy.  So does Fr. Reardon break out the three point sermons?   Wink  (Just kidding!)
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Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so. -- Douglas Adams
ytterbiumanalyst
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« Reply #28 on: December 02, 2007, 12:18:40 PM »

These churches look less like churches and more like malls all the time, even down to having a Starbucks inside the church.  (No joke: The JRA Cafe is owned, I believe, by Starbucks and operated by church volunteers.)
I don't think Starbucks actually owns it, but they do serve Starbucks, so they at least pay a franchise fee or royalties or something. BTW, I used to know the girl in that photo when I went to that church about 10 years ago. Can't believe she's still there!
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"It is remarkable that what we call the world...in what professes to be true...will allow in one man no blemishes, and in another no virtue."--Charles Dickens
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« Reply #29 on: December 02, 2007, 05:14:45 PM »

I don't think Starbucks actually owns it, but they do serve Starbucks, so they at least pay a franchise fee or royalties or something.

Ah, thanks.  Smiley 
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Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so. -- Douglas Adams
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