I'll be brief. It's a long weekend and I am ready for some vacation time but I really think this needs to be known.
I wrote a post highlighting the left-wing philosophy of the United Methodist Church here. Here is another example of such thinking.
Today, the UMC posted a blog on its website describing how United Methodists should (or shouldn't) remember 9/11. I have to say, they really outdid themselves.
Here is the main question they seek to answer: "Where is the line between appropriate remembrance in the context of worship of our Triune God and inappropriate focus on mere patriotism?" You can see where they are going with this....
We should not design worship on this Sunday primarily in praise of America or its "ideals." That turns into idolatry of the nation. We should not take this as an opportunity to support fears about or raise new fears of Muslim people in our midst, as the recent terrorist attacker in Norway has sought to do. This diverts worship that should glorify the God of all creation into a kind of "my people only" solidarity rally.
How does praising America and talking about her ideals turn into idolatry? I see nothing wrong with this. How is this different than me saying that a UMC pastor should never design a worship service around praising the ideals of John Wesley because this might lead to idolizing John Wesley?
Secondly, I am so glad the UMC tells me I shouldn't fear "Muslims." I feel so much better now. How can they say this on the 10 year anniversary of a day when 3,000 Americans were killed at the hands of Islamic extremists? Ah, I guess answered my own question. They don't consider the extremists "Muslim."
We probably should not show footage of the planes crashing into the Twin Towers or the Pentagon, or even the wreckage in the field near Shanksville, PA. We've all seen those images hundreds if not thousands of times. No doubt the media will be replaying them frequently in the lead-up to this day. Such images now probably do more to harm than to heal, if they ever did much to heal in the first place.
I could not disagree more. We need to be reminded that there are demented barbarians out there that seek to do us harm. Nothing will make this more evident than actually seeing the images from that fateful day.
One more point. This one just happens to be my favorite. Here is the last suggestion from the UMC:
Finally, something you may rarely hear me suggesting: If you follow the Revised Common Lectionary, as the vast majority of our congregations in the United States do, either heavily edit the selection for the Old Testament reading (the crossing of the Red Sea) or do not read it at all. Why? A good number of the verses included in this reading extol the deaths of the Egyptian soldiers, mired in the mud and then drowned in the Red Sea. Egypt today is a primarily Muslim nation. Rejoicing in the deaths of ancient Egyptians on this day is a bit too close to wishing harm or worse to our Muslim neighbors and Muslims around the world, and would easily be read and understood that way by many Muslims, even if that may not in any way be the intent (conscious or otherwise) of Christian congregations. If your congregation has been focusing on the Exodus narrative prior to this day, and so there is a reason to continue doing so, strongly consider reading and preaching from only these verses: Exodus 14:19-22, 27a, and 29-30a.
This is just so idiotic. I can't believe I even am reading this. The author is saying to not read parts of the Bible because it might be misunderstood by Muslims! Unreal!
"Oh, I'm sorry Lord, I'm not going to read from your Book because it might offend someone." This is downright shameful. Editing the Word so as to not offend anyone. What is wrong with these people?