April 08, 2008
Teach your children well
I hope they learned their lesson.
Posted by LindaSoG at April 8, 2008 04:00 PM
In the little Indiana town where I grew up, the various churches used to promote a kind of sit-in visit for kids to see that their friends who went to different churches weren't weirdos or demons or anything.
About every three years, every other week in springtime they'd take maybe 25 or so from all denominations to a different church -- Baptist one time, Methodist another, Presbyterian, Catholic, and so on. There was no such thing as Unitarian around those parts in those days, and kids were much better behaved at the time. I was around 11 or 12 when I did it.
Pretty good idea. The Catholic mass and liturgy were a bit mysterious to some of us, but a young priest, who was pretty hip, put it all into perspective pretty well. We didn't have Mormons or any Dunkards or Amish close enough to go experience their stuff, although they usually didn't mind as long as nobody interfered. I remember the preachers telling us that Mormons were just another brand of Christians and Amish were just old-fashioned ones.
We didn't have a synagogue, but a local pharmacist would sometimes call a friend of his from a temple in Indianapolis to tell the ignoranti about Judaism (LOTS of misinterpretations and propaganda in those Midwestern backwaters in those days). Remember, this was not long after liberation of the camps and the birth of Israel as a nation. Dr. Ackerman introduced the guy as a "chazzan" (with uvular fricative, which was odd to most of us) and told us he was the man who led chants and singing, kinda like a lay choir leader in many protestant kirks.
After the cycle was completed and the group had seen all the various denominations in action (usually took around 2 months), they'd get us all together in the city park on a nice summer Sunday and talk to us about what we'd seen. A few parents wouldn't let their kids go to any house of worship but their own, but all considered, it was a very mature and instructional approach toward chasing away the things that mutter in the angst closet. I know it certainly made ME more tolerant than I would otherwise have been considering the standard fears, myths, superstitions, and prejudices my aunts and uncles taught me.
Posted by: ET at April 8, 2008 07:59 PM
Dammmit, ET...really great comment. I pretty much did the same growing up in the Southwest, went to Baptista Iglesia for kindergarten, hit cathecism Wednesday nights, Baptist Sunday school on Sunday mornings...they sent a bus around, and I think it gave the Sar'Major and Momma a bit of time to themselves, *wink*....
I know that I "tasted" of every "religion" that any of the Damsels that I was interested in partook of.
Think it laid me ...oops...put me in good position to question things as I matured.
BUT....no one ever called me a "dog".
Good on these Parents for being Mortified and complaining loudly.
In "the good ol' days"...Sar' Major would have simply eviscerated them.
Some People refer to it as the Religion of Hate.
Posted by: Wollf at April 8, 2008 09:03 PM