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Poll: How often do you attend religious services excepting weddings and the like

At least once a week 15 (16%)
1-3 times a month 10 (11%)
Just on holidays 14 (15%)
Never 41 (44%)
My religion doesn't have services you insensitive infidel 6 (6%)
Pete Best 8 (9%)
   Discussion: How often do you attend religious services excepting weddings and the like
Rachel Marie aka RAI · 18 years, 2 months ago
I voted at least once a week, but that's only during the school year... I'm the president of the liberal protestant group (woo Christian hippies!), but I don't have a great church here at home to go to... here, I go like, once a month.
Gordondon son of Ethelred · 18 years, 2 months ago
Since my Bar Mitzvah I've been to one religious service outside of weddings and such and that was for non-religious purposes. I went to hear  johnny dixon cantor at her church.
Samantha · 18 years, 2 months ago
I go 3 times a week if I can... twice on sundays, once on wednesdays...

When I was younger.. we'd be at church all day on sundays,then on wednesday nights.. and since my mother's grandmother was jewish, I went to hebrew school for 8 years on tuesdays and thursdays.. had to be cultured y'know..

and then if my life wasnt screwed up as it is.. I went to all sorts of pagan/wiccan rituals for all occasions..

the funny part of all this is that I don't really do organized religion.. and I have catholic idols in my room.
Andrea Krause · 18 years, 2 months ago
I haven't been to church of my own accord since I was 6. The few times I've been since then was when visiting family or staying over a friend's house on a weekend, times when it would felt pretty rude to refuse.
sheryls · 18 years, 2 months ago
w0t only showed up on Rosh Hashana/Yom Kippur.

i didn't used to be though.

and nowadays, i don't even do that.

i dunno, my temple (i'm reformed, so we have a temple) is just so f'ing crowded on those holidays now you have to purchase *tickets* to attend these two particular services. most people can't get tickets to both Kol Nidre *and* Yom Kippur.

of course, you'll be one of like, 15 people to show up on saturday mornings.

The only thing i really miss about it, is that it was always bonding time with my mom.

esp. on yom kippur, when you list all those sins? and we'd elbow each other in the ribs each time we thought the other one did that.

"and for the sin of disresepcting my parents.." *ELBOW'D* "ow!"

i was a bit more religious when i was younger, attending an elementary school that was 1/2 the day in hebrew, and best friends with the orthodox rabbi's daughter. i'd go to services as the orthodox shul every week.
Matthew Scott Slawinski · 18 years, 2 months ago
I could be in the building three times a week, but not during a service. Every Sunday, fiance directs church choir, I sing and pray :)
Kris 'engaged' Bedient · 18 years, 2 months ago

I've been working on sunday mornings all summer, so I've been reduced from two churches down to one. Now a days, I just go to Liquid which is this cool modern worship-centered church that meets on sunday nights.

The service is two hours long, with the first 30 mins for kick-ass worship (rocking praise band) 10 minutes for offering and announcements, 50 minutes for the sermon (complete with powerpoint and movie clips) 10 minutes for prayer, and 20 minutes for more rocking worship (roughly).

It's 30 miles away from me, but oh so worth the drive. Soon thought, I'm hoping to start attending a small group there on tuesday nights.

Rimbo Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Yeah, I've also found a cool post-modern worship atmosphere on Sunday nights, meaning I get to sleep in on Sunday mornings for the first time in my life.  I go to something called "The Upper Room."  Lots of candles, dark lighting, incense, GREAT worship music, and experiential worship (focused on doing something during the service, rather than just sitting there).  Oh, and there's TONS of free food afterward.  They have a smoothie machine.  Sweeeeeeeet.
100% dainty! · 18 years, 2 months ago
I used to go to church pretty much every sunday when i was home from college, but that was just to see my friends that went there. then i realized that i didn't really like church very much and i can see my friends other ways.
goovie is married! · 18 years, 2 months ago
stopped going when i realized i was only going for the music, and that there were plenty of other ways to enjoy singing and community without supporting an institution i disagree with on just about every issue.
Alan Mendelsohn Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
goovie is married! Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
dude, if kevnnnnnnnn were here, i'd be at church every week. :P
Starfox · 18 years, 2 months ago
My wife and I go to our church at least once a week, but not out of a sense of duty to our faith. Luckily the Christian faith does not require going church every Sunday. We mainly go to worship formally if we feel the need and the fellowship.

We really like going to our Uncle's (familial relationship, but not actually an uncle) church, but it's 3 hours away. We go to an ELCA church here, but it's not as nice as our Uncle's and our Uncle is the pastor and gives really good sermons. He's an all around good pastor, he realizes people have doubts and such.
Rimbo Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
ELCA.  Represent.
stealthlori Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Luckily the Christian faith does not require going church every Sunday

depends on which Christian faith you're talking about.
Starfox Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Um, the one based on the Holy Bible? Sure different sects may have invented tenets saying that a good Christian goes to church every Sunday, but that's not what the Bible states.
stealthlori Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
well, there's that whole Mosaic thing about keeping the Sabbath holy ... not exactly invented. More like Word Of God. Not that those Ten Things are intrinsically any more important in Judaism than a lot of Judaic laws, but for some reason Christians seem to think the Big Ten are the most important, and that's indisputably one of the Big Ten.

Of course, how one "keeps it holy" is up for interpretation I suppose. (As is which day of the week would be the Sabbath.)
Starfox Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Right you are. Keeping it holy doesn't necessarily translate into "going to church". It does mean taking time to worship God, but you can do that in any format.
A girl named Becca Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Most of those different sects are based on the Bible, too. "Based on" allows for adaptation and interpretation.
nate... · 18 years, 2 months ago
Other than for weddings.

Always been kinda curious about going, though... maybe someday I'll tag along with a friend.
Chaya Papaya Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
you should come to shul with me sometime!
stealthlori · 18 years, 2 months ago
I haven't gone regularly to Catholic masses since I moved out of my parents' house. For awhile I would go once a month or so -- psychologically I needed the communal meditation experience, and I wanted my son to understand and have the opportunity to partake in the basics of his family's religious/cultural heritage (without necessarily being "indoctrinated"). But then I fell away further because Church politics and emphasis on dogma weren't exactly conducive to my own productive meditation. Now I tend to go to church services/masses mainly as an experiential and comparative thing. If I'm visiting someone and they ask if I'd like to go with them I'm usually game. (This has led to some, um, "interesting" church experiences. o.O)
Prinut · 18 years, 2 months ago
I tend to go to the temple 1-3 times a month. Its been more often this summer because I'm heading off to college and my mom wants me to be as blessed as possible. I'm like my father though, I'm not very religious. I mostly do it because my mom loves it when I go, and I'll admit, that I do enjoy it on the occassion.
George E. Nowik · 18 years, 2 months ago
every sunday morning barring work constraints or a gig that takes me out of town. haven't been able to go on saturday nights since the new job started and i miss that.

-= george =-
trunger is counting... · 18 years, 2 months ago
I only go for the music.
danced with Lazlo · 18 years, 2 months ago
I usually go every Saturday, but there is inevitably that one week a month when I just can't seem to drag myself out of bed, or else my dad can't... he's my ride. Shul is far away. For a while we were going to Friday night services pretty regularly as well. Maybe I'll start doing that again.
renita · 18 years, 2 months ago
I go on holidays, or when i'm at my parents, or sometimes i just feel like it.
nate... · 18 years, 2 months ago
is anyone else amused by the fact that the current graph looks like a six-fingered person flipping us off?

*joolee* · 18 years, 2 months ago
Atheist h'rah!

But I did go every sunday to the catholic mass at school b/c I played violin thar. Not anymore though.
Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
One of my quandries is what I would have done if I lived in Bach's parish when he was alive. There was a new Bach work performed every week at the chuch he was the cantor. He also played the organ. That might have been worth sitting through the service for even though I am a Jewish Atheist.
Kat Kunz · 18 years, 2 months ago
...or nearly, since my church has sucked me into its sunday school ministry, and now i sing songs/do skits with kids for 15 min every week. actually, it's fun and rewarding, but i like griping about my busy schedule, and this added commitment isn't making it any, er, less busy. *sigh*
dirty life & times · 18 years, 2 months ago
these days i only go on holidays, but in judaism, there's lots of holidays :)

recently i've been to as many buddhist services as i have jewish ones, but that's just cause of family.
Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Well Shabbat is the second most important Jewish holiday and it happens once a week.

See five years of Hebrew school didn't go to waste.

[Waits for someone to correct him]
dirty life & times Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
no, you're right (grumble).

my only excuse is that living in israel spoiled me for shabbat services: i learned that friday night services are much prettier than the saturday morning services. it seems in north america it's much less common for people to go to (much less sing at) shul on fridays. (when i tried to go one friday night at my hometown shul, i was the only woman there & had to pray in the cloakroom. at my current shul, they only have friday night services once a month.)
Smatts' Baby's Pics! · 18 years, 2 months ago
I guess I will admit that I had a twinge of sadness in my heart when I saw the percentage of people that answered "never" on this poll. Matt and I go every Sunday..not because we have to...because we WANT to. It is part of what we do as a couple and as a family...our faith is an extremely important part of our relationship and who we are as individuals. Going to church is spiritually's an organized means of praising and thanking God for all He does for us. It is also fellowship with other Christians...a place to feel loved.
Starfox Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Well, I think there are a fair number of atheists and hard-core agnostics in the fruhead community. There are also seems to be some which have a real hatred for organized religion. So I'm not surprised there's a large number in the "Never" column.

I personally have no love for any organized church. I think they get in the way of the message more than they help to spread it. Take the famed ELCA vs Missouri Synod split.

This is one reason I love my Uncle's sermons. He doesn't let political or religious dogma get in the way of the message. Some times he touches on sensitive subjects, but he always leaves room for disagreement and acknowledges that others have different opinion and that it's okay.
stealthlori Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
your uncle sounds like the best sort of clergyman -- preferring a thoughtful congregation to a fearful one.
sheryls Back · 18 years, 2 months ago

heehee, have you ever seen Cold Comfort Farm? where Ian McKellen is the preacher who makes people quiver?

i love that movie.

stealthlori Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Ian McKellen making people quiver?

Josh Woodward Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Why would you have sadness? I'd guess that many if not most of us are agnostic / atheist / otherwise non-religious. I'm glad church works for you, but the rest of us aren't going to sit around and feel twinges of sadness that you do go to church.
Andrea Krause Back · 18 years, 2 months ago

Well to someone who believes in their heart possibly that those who do not have the faith do not get to go to heaven...I can understand the sadness. She cares about people. She wants them to be able to get to heaven. She believes in something that may say they will not be there. She feels sadness at what she sees as many people missing out. (I don't mean to put words in your mouth, I'm just theorizing.)

While in the reverse, if we don't believe there's an afterlife or heaven or what have you, we don't believe in our hearts that those who don't believe (or not-believe, as the case may be) are going to be missing out on something important when they die. It makes your analogy a little uneven, I think. So we too can care about people. But their choice from our perspective does not carry the same weight of perceived loss and therefore compassion that people we care about are going to suffer that loss.

I guess what I'm trying to say is at the core I believe the sadness felt from religious people when seeing non-religious people (or whatever words you want to use in that place, spiritual, whatever) isn't as judgemental as one might think, but more based on compassion, based on a belief they hold dear, regardless of its eventual truth or not.

Andrea Krause Back · 18 years, 2 months ago

OK, yes, going to reply to myself. :) Just wanted to explain my point (yes, I am Jian) with an analogy.

Say there are two lines for ice cream.

Those in line A) have heard that only line A gets ice cream, and they really believe this to be so. They have friends/acquaintances who are in line B.

Those in line B) don't think there's any difference between the lines, and that everyone will get ice cream or not get ice cream, there is no criteria.

People in line A truly believe they're the only ones getting ice cream. They might feel sad/bad for their friends in line B who are going to miss out.

People in line B of course aren't feeling sad for line A people because they don't believe there's a dang bit of difference between the lines in terms of who gets ice cream. Or if there's any ice cream at all! :)

Who gets ice cream? Who knows. Doesn't matter. The point is one line is perfectly justified in feeling sad for the other line, even if the ice cream distribution ends up going entirely differently than they were led to believe. :)

I know I'm a big dork. And now I want ice cream.

nate... Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
You made me want ice cream too!
And the softserv thing is out of service today... poo.

I guess, were it not out of service, I'd go spend my buck or so and "find god".

ChrisChin is Getting Old Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
mmmmm..soft serve ice cream. Damn. I may have to hit a Mister Softee truck on the way home today. Thank you nate and andrea! :P
lawrence Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
believing and sharing are two different things, though.

if I'm in line B and think it doesn't matter what line I'm in, I'd really rather not have people in line A insisting to me that they're sad I've chosen the 'wrong' line.
Andrea Krause Back · 18 years, 2 months ago

But I don't think anyone's insisting anything. Just saying in passing that it makes them sad. I think people are seeing judgement where there's caring. I truly think it comes from a good place in the heart, not a critical one.

and I just want to note I am one of the atheists/agnostics, so I am one of the ones for which others are feeling sad.

Josh Woodward Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
It's ok.. I feel kinda sad for them that they're chosing the line that requires them to spend their precious time on earth trying to follow arbitrary rules to make their God happy. But in the end, as long as they don't try to get me in their line, I won't try to get them in mine, and we'll all be happy. Or sad. :)
Andrea Krause Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
/me sighs and gives up. :)
nate... Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Well, *I* see your point andrea.

Thanks for that perspective... it's a good one.
lawrence Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
So we're gonna suffer... but we're gonna be happy about it? :)
Josh Woodward Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Everybody dies frustrated inside, and it is beautiful. :)
stealthlori Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
but not everyone who believes in a divine force believes s/he/it gives a hoot about those arbitrary rules. i don't feel sad that others don't stand in the same line as me, because i think there are lots of different paths that lead to spiritual satisfaction and growth. i do take umbrage at the position (held by some religious and nonreligious alike) that "if you're not in my line, you're in the wrong line and that's so sad for you. you need enlightening so you too can know the joy i have in my beliefs about the world and all."

i tend to think we all ultimately get the ice cream we select and serve to ourselves. some of us pore over the menu; some of us are committed to French vanilla with sprinkles and think anything else is suspect and not real ice cream at all; some worry that the kind of ice cream they take is some sort of test of merit; and some don't think there's any ice cream so they don't expect any and they aren't disappointed. if they happen to find ice cream anyway it's exciting -- "hey, look at that, all the world and then there's ice cream too!" -- not a kick in the teeth or i-told-you-so that they were wrong.

and some of us will forgo ice cream and pick a pony instead. :)

A girl named Becca Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
But what if you get to the front of line B and find out the people in line A were right? And even if they're not, they're so sure they are that they don't want you to miss out on the ice cream.

I like the analogy, Andrea. I may steal use it sometimes. :)
lawrence Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
o/~ So at the end of all days, when the big man calls us up to heaven, he'll tell you you are really right, and everybody else was really wrong. And so what? o/~

sheryls Back · 18 years, 2 months ago

what about the tileists, rolling around on the floor? do they get any ice cream, or do they have to get up and stand in a line?

of course, everyone in both lines should feel sad for me, because i'm lactose intolerant, and can't get any ice cream anyway :(

Andrea Krause Back · 18 years, 2 months ago

The tileists will get the ice cream that klutzy kids drop on the floor. And they'll be happy for it.

It's divine ice cream sweetie, no sickies! :)

Starfox Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
See I've always viewed religious belief as an intimately personal choice. I obviously disagree with athiests and agnostics (although I understand the agnostic posistion much better), but I'm not going to look down on them or feel sad for them at all. It's their choice, and while I'd be happy to discuss my faith with them if they are open to it, their believe is theirs, and mine is mine, and I believe that everyone's beliefs can co-exist.
Rimbo Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Hm.  I like you.
Starfox Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Don't worry, it'll pass. ;-)
Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
I am being lazy but we had a poll about that once. I know that a majority are not non-believers. Someone less lazy could look up the numbers. It might be on a forum not a poll.

I started that poll too. I am an atheist and felt stigmatized far more often for my non-belief than my Jewish heritage. That might partially be a function of living in NYC. People don't understand why I cringe at the singing of God Bless America at baseball games.

OK I am being Jian now. I have strayed totally off topic. That's not my point. My point is I love finding out what other people's beliefs are.
Yvonne · 18 years, 2 months ago
I'm a Catholic. I have not been to my church since Christmas (that's right, not even for Easter this year...exams got in the way).

This summer I'm working at the Anglican church I go to youth group at and attend an informal service every Wednesday as part of my job. I like the Anglican church's views on some things a lot better than the Catholic church...I'd consider switching if I wasn't already confirmed in the Catholic church.

That being said, my Catholic church is getting a snazzy new building which I know I'll have to check out once it's finished. Maybe I'll even start going to services more regularly there. In addition to youth group at the Anglican church...and 9-5 weekdays and evening services during the summer...I guess that leaves Saturdays to *not* go to church.
Bender · 18 years, 2 months ago

I am a member of The Church of Major Charles Emerson Winchester III of Enormous Pomposity and a Really Cute Belly.

Goddammit, I need sleep.

Or, rather MajorCharlesEmersonWinchesterIIIdammit.

sheryls · 18 years, 2 months ago
in high school, some friends of mine invented a religion called Tilism (or tileism, i can't remember). It's the worship of the floor.

it was based on the idea that the floor is always there for you. the floor supports you. you can spit on the floor, throw your garbage there, sit on it, stomp on it, do what you will, the floor will still be there.

behold the everlasting love that is the floor!

worship involved rolling about on the floor and praising it. "yay floor!"

so then we started thinking, is it proper to worship on the second story (or higher) of a building? is not one man's ceiling another man's floor?

ah, but a second story floor may collapse. it is a false floor! thou shalt not worship the false floor.

if you're building has a basement, you should go there, for your floor is still false. and tricksy. tricksy and false.

(me = dork. thank you.)
Andrea Krause Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
So are sinkholes an expression of the floor's wrath? :)
sheryls Back · 18 years, 2 months ago

i don't think we got as far as sinkholes. :)

i think we decided earthquakes were what happened when the floor was angry :D

Bel the ever forgetful · 18 years, 2 months ago
I can certainly see why people would hate organized religion, and sadly in many places it hasn't changed as much as it would seem, as groups will split over the smallest things, and grudges last centuries. However, the church I'm in is fairly dis-organized and rather laid back, and I like it that way.
Smatts' Baby's Pics! · 18 years, 2 months ago
Had I shared your beliefs...or nonbeliefs...and not expressed how I felt no one would have taken offense. It seems expressing nonbeliefs is deemed nonjudgemental whereas expressing that one believes in a higher power is judgemental to those who do not believe. I would not have been offended if you had said you were sad for my beliefs...because that is what you feel. I find that very interesting.
lawrence Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
But you didn't simply express your belief in a higher power. Had you left it at that, it would have been fine. You expressed your beliefs in a judgemental way, rather than simply a personal one.
Andrea Krause Back · 18 years, 2 months ago

I still don't believe it was as judgemental as you perceive it.  She just said she admits it makes her sad to see the percentages. DIdn't go farther than that. For all you know she was sad because the number 4 has bad memories. She didn't add "because y'all are going to hell" or "because my way is the one true way"...she just admitted to an emotional response based on seeing the results. Yeah, maybe it would have been more PC to not mention it at all but I personally don't think it was the attack you see it as. Not that I'm the authority, but...yeah.

I personally would be plenty miffed if someone came in lecturing about us being on the wrong path and embracing sin and turning away from jesus blah blah blah. But I don't want to let my defenses about that kind of thing cause me to have a knee-jerk offended response to something that in all likelihood was completely innocent.

Smatts' Baby's Pics! · 18 years, 2 months ago
Thanks Andrea...thanks for not reading more into what I said than what was there.
Smatts' Baby's Pics! Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
 I simply said what I felt.  I didn't know there were rules against doing that on FHDC.  I think people take offense at things that make them feel uncomfortable.  That's all I really have to say about it.  If you feel I was trying to save your soul you read a whole lot more into what I wrote than what was there.  I was expressing my feelings just like everyone else.  In the future I will realize that having a belief in a higher power and expressing that or my "personal" feelings it not "PC" on FHDC.  I guess I too could have taken offense and ranted about some of the ways the church was being ridiculed, however, I did not.  I talked about my own beliefs and those of my fiance. 
stealthlori Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
Disclaimer: this post is coming from a woman with a migraine. No offense is meant to anyone, but my words may not come out as intended because my mental filters are a little wonky, so if it is offensive I'm sorry.

I simply said what I felt. I didn't know there were rules against doing that on FHDC. I think people take offense at things that make them feel uncomfortable.

I'm going to wade into some armchair psychology now. Susie, there's a difference between saying what you feel and implying that the actions of others are what make you feel that way. I think that's what made a lot of people uncomfortable -- not your religious beliefs, but the fact that you didn't "own" your feeling of sadness. Instead you put your feelings out there, as caused by the beliefs/churchgoing behaviour of others. Saying "what you do makes me sad" will put people on the defensive, because it implies that it's their responsibility: "if you do it differently, that will make me happy ...."

There are no "rules" about sharing feelings on FHDC, but it helps to remember that the feelings you have are not anyone else's responsibility. You choose to feel how you do, and there are always other choices, so assigning causality for your feelings "out there", predicated on others' actions or responses, generally will cause a ruckus among those who don't think their behavior or beliefs are any of your concern.

Bel the ever forgetful Back · 18 years, 2 months ago
It is true that people get ridiculed for opinions on FHDC, I know I have been.

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