Get me to the religious centre on time

@p1kef1sh (45640)
March 12, 2011 1:59am CST
All over the Christian world there are religious edifices in towns and villages that are there to bring like minded citizens together. We call these centers churches. Living in the same villages and towns there are also people who do not profess a Christian faith. But they do have faith of another type - muslim, Jew, pagan etc. Now churches are seen as a social centre as well as a devotional one. In a secular age when the cost of mobility is high and the numbers of christian practitioners is falling (in Europe at least) should the village centers consider opening their doors to those of different faiths and allowing them to use them for their own religious services. A truly inter-denominational facility?
9 people like this
17 responses
@dorypanda (1584)
12 Mar 11
Yes, I think that's a brilliant idea. In my town, we're lucky enough to have a 'Christian Centre', which is actually open to everyone of all faiths. I assumed with it being called a 'CHRISTIAN Centre' that it would only cater to Christians, however, after speaking with the Ministers wife, I now know that everyone of any faith is welcome. The sermons are geared up to Christianity, but I think that if someone of another faith wished to do their own sermon they'd be allowed to do it. We also have some non-denominational gathering places.............we call them 'pubs'. ;)
2 people like this
• Canada
13 Mar 11
I think there are two ways to interpret what the Minister's wife said (I didn't hear her exact words which may have clarified things). One is that anybody is welcome to come but they rather hope to convert those who aren't Christians. The other is that it takes a very plauralistic aproach. Most Christians would agree with the former but be horrified by the latter. People of some religion, and people with some medical issues, don't like pubs.
@ellie333 (21029)
12 Mar 11
Hi P1kef1sh, No, Community centres are there to bring people together no matter what their faith, a church is built for worship of a particular one the same as a mosque is. Huggles. Ellie :D
2 people like this
@Hatley (164654)
• Garden Grove, California
13 Mar 11
hi ellie but still here in the US we have some international faith churches and people have their own pastors and really they all worshop and also they all respond to each other too. Worship and bringing people together should not exclude each other as long as all respect each other faiths.I mean this would not be like a community center this would be a p place of worship, but I know in some of our protestant churches we have get togethers and they are all good Christians.we can worship and have fun too surely.
2 people like this
@ellie333 (21029)
13 Mar 11
The Church I go to in non-dominational and yes all worship one God so agree with Christians coming together in that way to have fun and enjoy but when it is completely different faiths I have a niggle thats all, don't know why. I am very accepting of other faiths, my own SIL is Buddhist. Huggles. Ellie :D
@catdla1 (6005)
• United States
12 Mar 11
I think it's a brilliant idea. If the various faiths can come together to celebrate what they have in common, surely the parishoners would come together as well. What better way to respect each other's differents and share brotherhood/sisterhood? Churches could lead the way on this.
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Mar 11
So far I have had 9 supporting comments and 1 not. This is more popular than I thought.
1 person likes this
@catdla1 (6005)
• United States
12 Mar 11
If nothing else, the religious communities should agree that it is better to believe in something, than to not believe in anything. From there is should be easy to build on that common ground. You'd think...
@debrakcarey (19924)
• United States
19 Mar 11
I am all for common ground. We have that, we are all human beings. As for believing in something being better than not believing in anything, I would rather base my life on what I believe to be truth, not superstition or myth. Now, I realize that belief is a very personal thing and not everyone feels this way, for me it has to make sense all round. I am not one who 'blindly' believes anything just cause others say it is so.
@barehugs (8986)
• Canada
12 Mar 11
Many many churches in rural Ontario Canada, are either closed, sold for other purposes, or falling in. Your idea has great potential for keeping these edifices open and used. Obviously The numbers of Church members are falling, so they can can longer afford the cost of heating, maintaining and running these buildings for their original purpose. As you have stated, the lack of Pastors, Priests, and Ministers, are also part of the problem. I like your idea of a community facility for the general Population to enjoy!
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Mar 11
Thank you. Of course there will be die hard antis - but it does seem to be truly democratic.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Mar 11
You know I have never thought about this before, but my thinking is why not I think the bottom line is that we all sort of reach to the same beliefs, just in different ways. So as long as they have their own priests, ministers and or reverends etc.. I do see why a scheduled time could not be shared and or sorted out. hmm what a thought! But of course my opinion.
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Mar 11
I can see arguments both ways and will be interested to see what responses I get. But if we profess a sharing faith.... Then why not?
@Hatley (164654)
• Garden Grove, California
13 Mar 11
hi Pikey why not when I stop to thinkof it as I know here in the US we have Baptists, congregationalists, Methodists, Catholics etc etc of course those I mentioned are protestant as opposed to the catholic religion which is a whole other thing; but I know in our protestant churches we are all worshiping one God. So opening the doors to all faiths really could work. They would need their own pastors but it would bring people together.I know there are a few inter-denominational churches here in the US.They seem to thrive and I for one think its a great idea myself.
1 person likes this
@urbandekay (18312)
12 Mar 11
No, that is absurd, Church buildings are not just social centres all the best urban
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Mar 11
Great response but what a shame that you didn't expand on your comment.
1 person likes this
@urbandekay (18312)
12 Mar 11
Well, what is not clear? The function of Church buildings is more than just a social centre and making them multi-faith would detract from that function all the best urban
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Mar 11
The function of a church is to shield the altar from the elements. But if the altar is reserved what's to stop the rest of the building being used?
@MsTickle (24962)
• Australia
19 Mar 11
I think non segregated churches are a great idea. They don't have to worship or have fellowship or devotions all at the same time but hopefully there could be some time put aside where all could join hands and celebrate friendship. Just as people work at there religion they should also work at socialising with others .
@p1kef1sh (45640)
19 Mar 11
I think so too. But this is religion that we are discussing and you know how funny some of them can be!!
1 person likes this
@MsTickle (24962)
• Australia
19 Mar 11
Yes, it's a shame...religion is the obvious area to start integrating within but it is the one area that would meet with the most resistance.
@suehan1 (4355)
• Australia
13 Mar 11
Good idea , Do you think they will divide up the collection plate at the end of each service. Over her there are so many new age type of churches springing up every where ,they all seem the same to me anyway, so they might as well use the same facilities. actually most of these new ones, are on multi million dollar properties so the venue may be nice for a visit.Cheers sue
• Canada
14 Mar 11
What is a new age church? I know a lot about Christianity and a fair bit about the New Age movement (which I think collapsed a bit after 2000 but now a lot of people are expecting something big in 2012 - it might collapse again if nothing much happens then). The two aren't really very compatable. The New Age is based on the idea that the signs of the zodiac have moved round about a month in the last 2000 years or so (and there is now a new sign, Orthiucus) because of procession of the equinoxes (this is a scientific phenominum that I don't think anyone is desputing). Astrologers have largely been ignoring this so their star charts are now about a month out although somebody made some big anouncement about it recently and it was all over the news. Anyway New Agers claim that this means that the age of Pisces, dominated by Christianity is coming to an end and there will now be a New Age of Aquarius with something more like old fashioned paganism. Christians say this is a load of balony as procession of the equinoxes really disproves astrology, not Christianity. Anyway the point it, Christianity and the New Age aren't really that compatable although some new age ideas, like feminism and being more in-touch with nature, probably are good and not inherently anti-Christian.
@p1kef1sh (45640)
19 Mar 11
Christians managed the change from the Julian Calendar to the Gregorian calendar so why not the New Age stuff. Surely Christians aren't interested in astroogy are they?!
@Theresaaiza (10466)
• Australia
12 Mar 11
Hi pike, it is probably possible for some sects to share their building with people from other beliefs but I don't see that happening in the Catholic realm though. Well for one, the images and statues of our saints and of Christ, and especially of Virgin Mary would probably just scare them away. Of course the argument is that according to them, Catholics are engaging in idolatry which is not true according to our doctrine. So I don't think it would make them comfortable using our church for whatever purpose it will serve them. However, the Catholic church is practicing this so-called Ecuminism. I don't understand it perfectly but it's like respecting another religion without forcing the people to be converted because even in these areas, God's love is still revealed and manifested. There is no physical building or structure shared but what is shared is love.
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Mar 11
I am really suggesting the physical use of the building although I do agree that the icons etc might put some off.
@Theresaaiza (10466)
• Australia
14 Mar 11
Oh, yes, I did get what you mean. I was just presenting another aspect of the Catholic Church which other people may have not known yet, when talking about "sharing". And oh, I just remembered that one of the oldest churches here was once used as a concert hall for a Christmas Special (so still religious in nature), and of course, the people who went there were from various faiths. I guess on that one instance the situation applied.
@debrakcarey (19924)
• United States
19 Mar 11
There is a very bad attitude amongst some Christians that they have to isolate themselves from the rest of the world to remain untarnished from error. I happen to have left the Baptist denomination for just this reason. Jesus taught that we are His body and in so being His body we are to move amongst others with charity so that they can see His great love for them. Remember the old gospel song, they'll know we are Christians by our LOVE. What makes some Christians feel that they must isolate themselves is the admonition of Jesus to remain pure from the world's influences. His example for us was in His resisting temptation in the desert and throughout His ministry. He associated with sinners and the unclean all the while remaining pure and free of sin. So, if these Christians who feel they would be contaminated (or their building contaminated)by association with non believers, what they are really saying is they couldn't resist the temptations offered.
@p1kef1sh (45640)
19 Mar 11
I find most organisd religioous adherents hypocritical Debra. That's why my belief is in God not man's interpretation of what he might or might not have said.
@kenzie45230 (3560)
• United States
16 Mar 11
I've heard that this is being done. Some of the more liberal Christian denominations are actually allowing Muslims to use their facilities until they can build a mosque. And, boy, are they being torn apart - locally in letters to the editor and online in forums such as this. When they start asking "what would Jesus do?" I don't think this is it. Love everyone, for sure. And that includes honoring them and respecting them and being kind. But allowing them to worship another faith? I don't think so. We are warned about false prophets. We are also told that those pastors who are allowing this will be the ones who will answer to God for doing so.
@p1kef1sh (45640)
16 Mar 11
Jesus would welcome them in with open arms. More than many of the so called Christians would do!!
• Canada
14 Mar 11
Of course many town have secular social centres. Different Christian groups often share buildings. I used to go to an Anglican church which was rented out to a Coptic church. However this can get messy. This is the case with one of the world's most famous church's, the Church of the Holy Sepulcre in Jerusalem, which includes supposed sites of the Crucifixion and Jesus' tomb (the authenticity of these is uncertain and a subject of much debate). This is shared but (I think) Catholic, Orthodox, Coptic and Ethiopian groups. They're constantly fighting each other and have been for centuries. It's so bad the key's are kept by a Muslim family (which I think is a total disgrace). If you start having different religious sharing a building, things could get very messy. Can you imagine a combined sinagogue and mosque? Another issue is the noted tendency of Islam to take over other religion's places of worship. This could be very much "rubbing salt into the wounds" and cause antagonism, this is part of the argument about building the mosque near ground zero.
@p1kef1sh (45640)
14 Mar 11
I am pleased to read that there are some enlightened churches out there. I'm not sure about Muslims taking places over. There's plenty of evidence for Christians taking pagan places in the past.
• Philippines
13 Mar 11
This idea is really great and I have seen this in Hong Kong. There is a place there (Mariner's Club in Tsim Tsa Shui) which has a prayer center and is used by different religious sector. They have organized it in such a way that every sector has enough time for their activities (prayer/worship) and they have been doing this for many years already without conflict. Keep up the faith.
@p1kef1sh (45640)
19 Mar 11
Thast's good to hear. Thank you.
@dawnald (84148)
• Shingle Springs, California
12 Mar 11
Don't see why not, but would it ever really happen?
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Mar 11
Apparently it is happening Dawn.
@BarBaraPrz (19799)
• St. Catharines, Ontario
12 Mar 11
Actually, it's already happening. I've seen many churches that are home to two separate congregations.
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Mar 11
There are some here too.
1 person likes this
• Canada
13 Mar 11
Not a bad idea. I'm Presbyterian, but I attended a catholic school, and we had masses in the gym. I think that a building with different large rooms that people could use for religious meetings would be a wonderful idea. It doesn't have to look a certain way, just be a nice safe place for multiple denominations to get together, either in individual rooms, or together in larger rooms, to celebrate eachother.