Thoughts and prayers.
Roughly 10 years ago, I wrote a blog, commenting on an NPR show I heard, featuring one John S. Dickerson and his then-new book, The Great Evangelical Recession. They KNEW about this a decade ago, and after all this time, it seems to me as though they still can't bring themselves to acknowledge why they continue to lose ground. Back then I opined that it was a combination of the impact of the internet and 9/11 which were the primary anti-agents to their cabal. I stand by that opinion. Their continued irrationality has had its pants pulled down to their ankles by the internet, by commenters such as Aron Ra, Matt Dillahunty, Seth Andrews, and many, many others. The message these and other observers have made resonate with those for whom religious belief has begun to ring false in their ears, never mind to those of the Millennials and Gen-X, many of whom never bought into religion's snake oil to begin with.
And evangelicalism STILL can't admit that. And what will likely happen is that those who have been dissuaded will go their own way, leaving the True Believers and the radicals and the Christian Nationalists, whose aberrant behavior will further disgust and resultingly disaffiliate onlookers from a belief system which not only no longer works, but never did in the first place.
This makes the SBC more dangerous in the short term, and they have enough positions of power to cause a lot of damage while they are in their death throes. This is why we are seeing more conservative school boards and more local races with super religious candidates. They’re fighting by trying to force their way into our and our children’s lives.
We can outlast them.
An interesting life so far. Among many other things, I have seen...
Sputnik, the first satellite flying over L.A., the first commercial jet airlines, the first men in space, the first men on the Moon, the first color TV broadcasts, the worldwide eradication of smallpox, the abolition of apartheid in South Africa, the legalization of same-sex marriages in many countries and finally in the U.S., the effective treatment of AIDS,...
and if I keep my health up and look both ways crossing the street, I might see, for all intents and purposes, the extinction of the Southern Baptist Convention.
Something to look forward to.
"… the SBC has declined by 1.5 million members since 2018, and by more than 3 million members since 2006. The COVID-19 pandemic played a role in the downturn, as did the reality that as older members die off, there are fewer young people to replace them.
Thoughts and prayers."
That is beautiful writing.
Tremendous. Couldn't happen to a nicer org. I wish it was possible to get accurate numbers on the Mormons (I was raised one so there's a special chamber in my blackened heart for them) but considering they count tons of people who don't want to be members anymore it's not really gonna happen.
"𝑆𝑐𝑜𝑡𝑡 𝑀𝑐𝐶𝑜𝑛𝑛𝑒𝑙𝑙, 𝑒𝑥𝑒𝑐𝑢𝑡𝑖𝑣𝑒 𝑑𝑖𝑟𝑒𝑐𝑡𝑜𝑟 𝑜𝑓 𝐿𝑖𝑓𝑒𝑤𝑎𝑦 𝑅𝑒𝑠𝑒𝑎𝑟𝑐ℎ, 𝑎𝑡𝑡𝑒𝑚𝑝𝑡𝑒𝑑 𝑡𝑜 𝑠𝑝𝑖𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑑𝑎𝑡𝑎 𝑏𝑦 𝑠𝑎𝑦𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑦 𝑤𝑒𝑟𝑒 𝑗𝑢𝑠𝑡 “𝑐𝑎𝑡𝑐ℎ𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑢𝑝” 𝑜𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑖𝑟 𝑟𝑒𝑐𝑜𝑟𝑑 𝑘𝑒𝑒𝑝𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑐𝑙𝑒𝑎𝑛𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑢𝑝 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑖𝑟 𝑚𝑒𝑚𝑏𝑒𝑟𝑠ℎ𝑖𝑝 𝑟𝑜𝑙𝑙𝑠 𝑏𝑦 𝑔𝑒𝑡𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑟𝑖𝑑 𝑜𝑓 𝑝𝑒𝑜𝑝𝑙𝑒 “𝑤ℎ𝑜 𝑠𝑡𝑜𝑝𝑝𝑒𝑑 𝑝𝑎𝑟𝑡𝑖𝑐𝑖𝑝𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑖𝑛 𝑎𝑛 𝑖𝑛𝑑𝑖𝑣𝑖𝑑𝑢𝑎𝑙 𝑐𝑜𝑛𝑔𝑟𝑒𝑔𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛 𝑦𝑒𝑎𝑟𝑠 𝑎𝑔𝑜.”"
Ah. So what you're telling me is that this years' decline wasn't as steep as it looks, because last year's numbers were illegitimately inflated with dead people and no-shows?
That's fine. I'll accept it. And I will predict that 2024's decline will not be as steep as it looks because the 2023 numbers also contain dead people and no-shows. :)
"Russia is floating a plan to build a village for conservative Americans who want to move to a 'Christian country' and are tired of liberal ideology in the US"
Hey, conservatives/Christians. Here's your chance to finally live in a Christian theocracy. Do it. Do it do it do it!
Oh, drat. Where 𝘥𝘪𝘥 that tiny violin get to? It must be wherever I left all my fucks, because I can't seem to find any of 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘮 either...
So the GQP "isn't quite ready" to expel George Santos just yet. Why? Isn't this the same GQP that showed no hesitation in ousting 2 black Democrats over nothing?
Jesus harder, yeah, that's the ticket.
Hey, even Hemant can give us glimmers of hope from time to time in between all the dipshits.
That is a huge gap between worship attendance and SBC membership. Yes there is a smaller number that attends 'small groups' but I suspect those are almost entirely included in the worship attendance circle. The nine and a half billion who claim to be Southern Baptist, yet don't go to worship service are not following the tenets of their religion. So I have to ask what other parts of their religion do they deem to be unnecessary?
Are they not going to church because the worship leader is pushing a right wing agenda? Are they not going because they are questioning their own grasp on reality? Or are they just not going because life is too short to spend it at church?
I'm in the Dallas area and the nextdoor website is screaming with religious fanatics from this area with regard to the mall shooting that happened about a week ago. I'm pleasantly surprised at the number of older people who are starting to think that maybe we need to do a little something about guns. BUT there are a TON of older/younger christians with their outrageously ignorant thoughts about god in relation to this . Some feel that 'god" was at work in the hands of the cop who was able to-early on-kill the shooter. When I responded to one posting with a "well if god was there he should be arrested and jailed for his negligence" it was SCANDALOUS. You could almost hear the "Harumph" right thru the computer. A number of others were just so complimentary to god for all that he did at the site of the shooting. When I asked what he did there was no response-strange huh? A number of people seemed to just ignore my questions and state that their god is a good god and they will never forsake their god. Their ignorance is beyond appalling. One post that really pissed me off was the one that claims that all these shooters are "leftists". Those bstards are lucky they aren't in my presence when they say that. There would be a whole nother level of shooter. I used to think that I would flirt with you filthy atheists and your philosophy but would end up back on the christian side. Now I know that could NEVER happen. They are too fkng ignorant.
As someone who attended SBC services by force for the first 20-ish years of their life, this honestly comes as the expected result of SBC positions on any number of political issues. Sure, abortion is one of them, but the truth about the SBC is that they really are every bit as misogynistic as you think they are; and that's just the tip of the iceberg for their unpopular and/or morally bankrupt conservative political positions. Their rhetoric, when examined carefully, rarely reflects things like compassion, forgiveness, or generosity, they always seem to be too busy condemning someone for some imaginary offense - like being both alive and gay at the same time.
If anything, I'm disappointed that the drop isn't far steeper. I keep hoping that more people will recover from the illness we call religion and wake up to the way it's poisoning society against itself, but it looks like the wait isn't over yet.
It's called progress. Now that we have the internet there is no excuse not to explore and learn about the true origins and validity of your religion.
Young people have little use for the SBC's intolerance, and are deserting the church in droves. Good for them. In many ways, the SBC represents what humanity has had to overcome to progress. Given a free hand, they would turn back the clock on women's rights a hundred years or more, and kids today get that.