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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #8)

Sun Mar 11, 2012, 12:09 AM

9. It's a Vineyard Movement church, a group with a bit of an interesting background

The Vineyard Movement was basically founded by a bunch of outcasts from other evangelical denominations about the time the religious right was starting in the early 80s and was partially founded exactly to escape a lot of the things that now define today's right wing evangelicals. Some of the churches in the movement are still very conservative and fundamentalist, but not all, since it's more of a loose association than a denomination there's a lot of variation, and many have been started by very progressive minded pastors. The one I go to is part of a faction within the Vineyard trying to appeal mostly to younger people (all of the pastors are under 40) and people who wouldn't normally go to church (I certainly fall into both categories), of which hardline fundamentalism is certainly not going to work. Vineyard churches are great at this typically because they have more modern music (and not that crap that makes up most of Christian contemporary either, I know the people in the worship band actually like good music, I've seen some of them at some of the indie and punk shows around here.), and a very casual atmosphere (you won't ever be condemned for how you dress, and the pastor is most likely going to be wearing jeans anyway.)

What separates us from the conservative churches:

-We do allow female pastors and women in leadership, the entire church is ran by a married couple with the wife just as involved in administration, and we do have other female pastors and allow women to preach. (This is true of almost all Vineyard churches by the way, even the conservative ones.)
-We are accepting of GLBT people, and I have seen gay and lesbian couples in attendance.
-We don't put a lot of emphasis on Biblical literalism or things like Young Earth Creationism, which I have never heard brought up. The vast majority of sermons are mostly based on the New Testament, and even the ones from Paul's epistles focus on the things he wrote than the condemning verses the fundies love to bring up (and there's a LOT more in those writings than the stuff you commonly hear.)
-We put a lot of emphasis on helping the poor and social justice and nothing of the right wing "prosperity theology" type teachings, which obviously wouldn't go over well in a congregation that is probably about 3/4 under 35. (This is a common theme even in the more conservative Vineyard churches by the way.)
-Perhaps most importantly we are willing to accept disagreements on this stuff. A prime example is the sermon a few months ago when one of the lead pastors was talking about baptism, and even though this church performs believer baptism and does not baptize babies like most evangelical churches, he did say that if someone was baptized as a baby and they are OK with that, he'll accept that too. However they offered to still baptize anyone who wished to be who was baptized as a baby (I chose to be baptized, but it was entirely my own decision with no pressure.)

The only even close to political sermons I've ever heard were about things like respecting God's creation (environmentalism), why Christians should accept immigrants, and being a blessing to your neighbors regardless of things like race and social class.

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cleanhippie Mar 2012 OP
saras Mar 2012 #1
HockeyMom Mar 2012 #2
ButterflyBlood Mar 2012 #7
zipplewrath Mar 2012 #3
cbayer Mar 2012 #4
Silent3 Mar 2012 #11
cbayer Mar 2012 #12
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cbayer Mar 2012 #16
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cbayer Mar 2012 #18
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rug Mar 2012 #5
ButterflyBlood Mar 2012 #6
cleanhippie Mar 2012 #8
LineLineLineReply It's a Vineyard Movement church, a group with a bit of an interesting background
ButterflyBlood Mar 2012 #9
cleanhippie Mar 2012 #10
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