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Old 06-16-2019, 07:05 PM
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,585 posts, read 39,962,822 times
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Personal preference... but... I attend the 'off-cycle' services NOT the Main Events...
I'm into the 'relational' events / service to others. I would MUCH rather feed the hungry and fix the cars of widows than hang around a group of noisy 'praise worshipers'.

Sunday nights are my favorite events, especially when interactive (such as a small group in a circle, or when you are free to ask questions / have conversations at anytime)

Potlucks / casual dinners together are a preference. We often do that at least 2x / month. 2x / week would be fine with me. You can build good and lasting relationships around serving others and eating together!

Even my 'country school' excelled in that! (Community fundraisers and helping those in need)

It was a LOT of fun!
I was with some 'old-people' today who were old when I was in elementary school (50 yrs ago!) We had a great time together today, 'remembering' those events. (met at an excellent active church group today)

Yes, as per ages past... the church is aging. and it will be very different in 20 - 30 yrs. (As is our social activities across the board)

I wonder, but DO NOT WORRY about what will happen to the church as we knew it.
I am glad I have had a lifetime of service and fellowship. (tho I attend VERY few conventional 'services' (i.e. 'entertainment')).

Financial GIVING? That has not changed... I give more than I spend on myself for last 40+ yrs. I set up a 'Donor-Advised-Fund' 25 yrs ago to cover my 'gifting' through perpetuity. (regardless of my personal income).

My estate goes to my DAF, kids will be able to designate the gifting from there.

Old 06-16-2019, 07:06 PM
Status: "Trump 2020-Making America Great Again" (set 11 hours ago)
Location: Walt Disney World
16,353 posts, read 8,900,570 times
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As someone else said, retirement has not changed my church attendance. My wife and I have always been very involved in our local church.
Old 06-16-2019, 07:53 PM
Location: Boca Raton, FL
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Smile Will answer more later

Yes, my husband and I go to church. We also volunteer and have been for over 30 years (at the church).

How did that happen?

We were asked.

It's a large church but we probably would not have volunteered on our own.

So, please, whatever you are dealing with, ask your church if you can start a group. We have groups dealing with divorce, grief, all the issues you would find out there today.

Volunteers are so desperately needed.

We had a greeter at one of the doors - she just passed away. She was 95. Everyone just loved her.
She had a smile on her face and a welcome handshake.
Old 06-16-2019, 08:01 PM
Location: Idaho
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[mod note] Everyone, please stay "on topic". Thank you. [/mod note]

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Old 06-16-2019, 09:03 PM
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Originally Posted by BBCjunkie View Post
Not to get into a discussion of semantics here but I respectfully disagree with your premise. One cannot equate intellectual curiosity (which is what you're describing in the sentence I bolded) with "being religious".

Webster's defines the adjective "religious" as:

(1) relating to or manifesting faithful devotion to an acknowledged ultimate reality or deity
(2) of, relating to, or devoted to religious beliefs
(3) scrupulously and conscientiously faithful

None of those definitions of the word apply to your premise.
Webster's definition is incomplete. And we're not staying on topic. :-) Don't want to get the moderator upset. :-)
Old 06-16-2019, 09:05 PM
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I think this is winding down. The vast majority of you posted open, honest and intelligent posts. I'm really grateful. I learned a lot from you today. Thank you so much.
Old 06-16-2019, 10:12 PM
Location: Coastal New Jersey
56,085 posts, read 54,581,442 times
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Originally Posted by josie13 View Post
I was raised Roman Catholic and attended parochial schools in towns where my father could blag his way into a discount on bulk tuition (7 kids). He was raised by Jesuits and benefited from an excellent international education, so he was pretty skilled at debate. Often, we'd stop by the rectory after Mass, where he'd match minds over tea/biscuits with the priest.

Nevertheless, I stopped believing in any supernatural nonsense shortly after my First Communion, at which time I began to read widely and reason through the rubbish theology with which my intelligence was insulted.

I was obligated to attend Mass weekly as long as I lived in my parents' house, but I was allowed to sit quietly during Mass and read a book and think my own thoughts about what was happening. I was never forced to go to Confession or take Communion after my Confirmation. After I left home at 17, I never darkened the doors of a church again, except for one wedding and one baptism which I attended to honor dear, close family members.

I would no more enter a church in retirement than I'd enter a card room, a casino, a gun range, or a golf course. No interest whatsoever.
Interesting list. Of all of them, I would go to a casino. Possibly a golf course. I have before, long ago.

As a matter of fact, you can combine church with the casino. Three women from my church and me were delegates to the Episcopal Church Diocese of New Jersey Convention last year. Afterward, we drove the hour or so to Atlantic City, where I won enough at Let-It-Ride to treat the girls to a good dinner and have some cash left over.

A church affiliation can lead to many adventures.
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Old 06-17-2019, 03:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Piney Creek View Post
Curious how you know this. As I understand it, you sat outside a church this morning and these just happened to be people you observed between the end of one service and the beginning of the next. I get it that you saw a lot of elderly people, but how would you know if they had the same attendance habits that they had before the retired or not?
I don't know and that's why I started this thread and am asking. And that's why I spent two years going around, on Sunday mornings, to the mainstream Christian churches in my city and talked to church members and asked them the same thing.

It's not just a generational thing. It's also an educational thing -- people who are extremely well educated (regardless of generation) tend not to be true believers -- which, PLEASE, does not mean that I think church attendees are stupid and not well educated Not at all. People who are very intelligent and very well educated attend services at churches of the denomination of their choice -- they just don't tend to be deep believers. And that brings me to:

Iit's also a social thing -- church attendees, whether or not they are true believers, tend to attend church because of social connection(s). As I said in a previous post (or at least I think I did), The Pew Foundation found that social connection was the No. 2 reason most people attend church.

It's a family thing. Generation after generation (same family, of course) attend because, well, that's what their family does. I have a neighbor who is in her 40s -- she is not a believer but she takes her mother to church and she stays for services. Her mother doesn't know that her daughter is not a believer. My neighbor and I have become good enough friends that I asked her a couple of weeks ago how long she will keep attending church services. She answered, "Until my mother dies."

It's also a societal 'thing'. Young people are not attending mainstream Christian churches anymore but they are certainly attending Evangelical mega-churches, and those churches are alive and well and thriving. And whereas church attendance at mainstream Christian churches in The US is dying off, church attendance is picking up, for example, in Africa. More and more Africans every year are converting to Catholicism and attending Mass; or they are attending non-denominational Christian churches.

For me, the bottom-line question, is why do the older/elderly/retired attend church services religiously when most churches offer nothing to the old/elderly/retired. Mainstream Christian churches' time and energy go into children, youth, families, married couples, even single adults -- but there is literally nothing for the old/elderly/retired. Just two more examples: The Roman Catholic Diocese in my part of the country has an official office for just about everything -- from youth to even a separate ministry office for Hispanics and another separates office for Blacks -- but there isn't one for the old/elderly/retired, and there never has been. Second example: when The Episcopal Church in The US started fighting within itself over whether or not to accept homosexuals and homosexuality (and, consequently, a lot of law suits ensured -- another story for another time -- not here), one of the first things they did to conserve money was to shut down their national office for the old/elderly/retired. I have wondered for years why older people attend church(es) that depend on the old/elderly/retired for the bulk of their volunteers but offer nothing for them.

What I was hoping for here was that someone would say: "Yes, the church I attend has nothing for seniors; HOWEVER, I attend church because (fill in the blanks)." When I went to Catholic churches, for example, over those two years, and asked that question, the answer I received most frequently was (in various ways) was: "I'm afraid of going to Hell when I die." For non-Catholic church attendees it was: "This is my family. This is where my friends are" or "I love volunteering here -- keeps me busy." NOT in those EXACT words EVERY SINGLE TIME -- but that was pretty much the gist of what I got. No one EVER said something to the effect: "I just love worshiping God."

In a society (US) in which we tend to become invisible after age 65 -- in fact, try getting a job after age 50 -- hell, try getting a job after age 40! -- in a society which basically does not care about it's old/elderly/retired, I was astounded to find out that the churches do the exact same thing (synagogues are a bit better).

And it matters to me because what I've learned about retirees is that there are basically only two kinds: one group volunteers 24/7 (an exaggeration) because they don't want to be at home because they are lonely and bored to death at home; and the other group stays in their homes, with the drapes closed, watching TV 24/7 (an exaggeration but not by much). Well, then there is the group that is too ill/too injured to be able to leave their homes or they are too poor to go anywhere/do anything.

What I have learned over the years -- and I wasn't going to say it here but I will now -- is that most retirees will tell you that they are happy in their retirement but they are lying. They struggle with depression, with the feeling of being useless, and with financial/health issues. And our society and our government simply don't care (another thread for another time -- but I'm certainly not going to start that one LOLOLOL -- this one has been hard enough LOLOLOLOLOL). I'm fortunate in that I live in a relatively small big city which really caters to its old/elderly/retired AND to its POOR old/elderly/retired. This place is Disneyland for the old, etc. -- there is no only a lot to do but my city offers free door-to-door transportation AND free breakfast and lunch, Monday through Friday. And people STILL are not happy and hermit in their homes.

Old age/retirement are VERY complex issues, throughout The US, and it's not going to be resolved on C-D. But we need to start talking about them -- we need to start speaking up and out and doing so truthfully.
Old 06-17-2019, 03:51 AM
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I apologize for the tome, but I'm deleting it or editing it.

Old age/retirement IS NOT 'just' an extension of middle age. It is a very different time of life. And for most of us, we have some serious complex health issues by age 70 (and we tend to get not good health care to boot -- I'm speaking only in generalities). Regardless of what you read in the medias, most of us age dead by age 80 (according to Medicare/Medicaid -- now "CMS"). And no one, including us, wants to talk truthfully and realistically about old age/retirement, because, whether or not we want to admit it, the truth is that most of us are ashamed of being old (thanks for our society's focus and concentration on 'youth'). Until we stop being ashamed of being old, no one -- not our families, our churches, our society and our government -- is going to take us seirously and treat us as valuable members of society, which we are.

Ok, before the moderator has a heart attack and bans me from C-D FOREVER -- I am only half kidding -- I am fully aware that this IS off topic -- I may start another thread on this topic but don't count on it. Is anyone interested in talking about this on another new thread? Probably not.

Last edited by Fran66; 06-17-2019 at 04:00 AM..
Old 06-17-2019, 05:44 AM
1,322 posts, read 647,533 times
Reputation: 4236
My church is being in quiet park, or walking along a beach, looking at God`s creation. No need to sit in a building (church) and having someone tell you, that you are not putting enough in the collection basket. I have never been to a church, where I have come away feeling good or peaceful. I have my own charities, that I give too, and feel good about.
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