Saturday, August 23, 2008

Mike Gugliemucci

This is indeed the issue that all of Christendom is talking about (well, all the Christians I know anyway), I haven't had time to write a response yet myself, but here are a couple others worth reading.

This one is from one of my favourite communicators Mark Sayers, and this is from a well-known pastor Mark Conner.

Is a pretty tough situation, and my thoughts and prayers are with those for whom he has been influential in their faith development.


IB said...

It's definately a hard one. I have very conflicting emotions and ideas as to how to react to the whole thing.

Not being from a mega chruch and not having ever been a huge fan of the song, or believer in the story this has still affected me.

I am a cynical individual. I find it hard to take healing stories on face value, I guess my life experiences dictate the way I view things more than I would like to think.

Anyway I don't know where I stand, don't know how to take this!

I've been following the story with interest, and have found this website quite insightful.

David said...

If I believed in God, I would thank him for the entertainment that people like Michael Guglielmucci provide. This one provides a nice contrast to the the perennial fights the Anglicans have about power and sex.

Mark Sayers' comments that "The reason that so many of the young adults feel so torn over this is that we have taken on what some label as a ttherapeutic faith, that is a faith in which feelings rule over facts, in which the heart beats the head."

But that's all Christian have when you look at it - subjective feelings about whose interpretation of God's dessert scribblings is better. And subjective feelings about being led by the Spirit. More like subjective bullshit.

Mark Sayers had better be careful about driving people to look at their faith rationally and objectively. Many have done so and freed themselves through atheism. Read the following book as an example of this result:

Contact me if you want a free copy of this book (limited offer, conditions apply).

rockpaperdynamite said...

It is a truely sad state of affairs. I also wonder why he feels he has to throw pornography into the picture (pun intended).
This whole state of affairs makes me wonder how worship musicians should be funded. I think paying them royalties like typical musicians is wrong, it puts their emphasis on selling CD's, Books, etc. When they should be focused on producing a quality worship experience.
I can think of many many different ways they could be set up like that and that would surely decrease the chances of this type of stuff happening.
Not sure where this is going. Just try and learn from it people.

Janet Woodlock said...

Of course David, you are completely objective and emotion has no role in your own faith position. Just like the preacher of the book, who moved to atheism originally as a result of emotional disillusionment with the church.

As I have noted to you several times before, it would be difficult to read "Mere Christianity" (C.S. Lewis) and the "Case for..." series of books (Lee Strobel) and then claim Christianity has no rational basis. Of course, you never read any book I suggest because your mind is probably more closed than that of anyone else on this blog.

As noted, although I've read plenty of books in the past by skeptics, I'm not interested in bothering with this one because his primary argument is in relation to evil... but if you start making moral judgments on anything you've pretty much given a free kick for the faith position... that there is such a thing as a moral law to the universe which we all recognise... which is terribly difficult to explain in materialistic terms.

Sarah said...

Wow Digs, your blog is pumping! By the way, it came up 5th in a google search when I searched about this issue, even though you spelt Guglie.... wrong! (not that I know how to spell it either!).

I just feel so sad for the guy. I mean, according to the reports, he's been addicted to porn and struggling with physical affects of guilt etc since he was 12. These things don't happen on purpose, and he's was just a kid when it all started. I don't quite get how the faking the illness thing and the porn go together, but one article stated that at some points doctors believe he actually did believe he was sick. that's someone who needs help, not condemnation.

Hmmmmm. Crazy times. So bizarre.
Love Mase.

Janet Woodlock said...

I feel a bit conflicted with your comment Sarah... on the one hand I so appreciate your compassion and unwillingness to throw stones... on the other hand, I feel like there's a tendency in society to explain away appallingly bad behaviour... "these poor people are just victims, and that's why they behave this way".

I feel like we need to hold the tension of justice and compassion in ALL areas. Yes, a paedophile might have had a dysfunctional upbringing and be a "victim" in that sense... but that doesn't excuse reprehensible behaviour, or negate the need for justice to be done. It seems to me you can be too hard and destroy people... but you can also be too soft and stand for nothing.

I think Mark Sayers has really done a good job in pointing out the problems in broader culture (and some church cultures) that actually reward such spectacular inauthenticity.

Digger said...

I may be interested in reading this book David-what are the conditions?

BTW, have you ever read any of the books Janet mentioned? If so, would love to hear your thoughts?

If not, maybe a book for book reading swap might be in order?

And yeah I see what ur saying Sare, but I agree with Janet, it's just not that simple.

And yeah it's funny how high it's rating hey-I haven't even written anything much myself! Just linked to others.

Is the most readers I've had since a certain event early last year that caused a bit of interest ;)

David said...

As soon as I get the book, Digger, I'll provide a temporary email address for you to contact me.

Conditions: You read the book and recommend a similar style book written from a Christian perspective. A serious Christian book, not any by C.S. Lewis, Josh McDowell, Hal Lindsey, for example.

Janet Woodlock said...

Gosh David, if I'd thought you'd actually read one of my recommendations I'll be in the game too.

Personally, I wouldn't put C.S. Lewis and Hal Lindsay in the same sentence... Hal is a complete nutter.

Janet Woodlock said...

I have to pose the question Digger... what have you got that I haven't? I've been suggesting books to David for years... and he hasn't bothered with any of MY suggestions!

Let me think... well of course your blog is cooler than mine... mmm... you're younger, blonder, fitter, nicer... Hmmph... never mind...

But I'm interested in David's comments in the second comment on this thread... as if it were as simple as rational people being atheists, and Christians being totally subjective.

One of the strengths of post-modern thinkers is evaluating themselves as a subject... rather than imagining a person is capable of pure objectivity. For my experience is wherever people have strongly held opinions, there are emotional roots to this... religion, politics, relationships, anything.

I've found when I dig into serious apologetics with atheists, they start twitching and out come the stories about the church that did something horrible to them, the religious nutter in their family, the deep disappointment somewhere in their life... and I'd speculate that most people who hold to atheism strongly (as opposed to those who haven't thought much about religion at all) have quite emotive reasons for doing so. Just as Christians have emotive reasons for their belief. This isn't right or wrong... it's just human. But we need to face and acknowledge this side of our human-ness.

Which is why I suggested David read something on psychology and spirituality like the "Road Less Travelled" rather than a serious apologetic book per se... until we actually understand what's driving us and our own deep seated agendas, we can't hope to truly understand and respect the perspectives of other people.

Anyway... let me know what suggestions you come up with... I await the book reviews with interest!

Digger said...

Hey David, is hard to know what is a similar style when I haven't read it?

To make sure I'm finding a book that is addressing the questions you have-can you outline which specific parts of Christianity you find objectionable?

As you've mentioned you see yourself as purely rational and objective, so hopefully it should be easy to recognise what it is exactly repels you.

Please let me know.


David said...

Digger, I've now received some copies of the book mentioned above.

Janet has an email address you can contact me on.

Digger said...

k will email her then Dave.

You've still given me nothing though in terms of guidance as to what book to send you?

I don't want to waste your time and mine sending you something that's of no interest.

When you do I'll find something and email you.


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