I don’t go to church, but I’m a Presbyterian

The SouthChristina and I met some friends at a bar here in Columbia, SC recently. The bartender and I started talking and he asked why I moved from Orlando to Columbia. I told him that I work for a church, gave him a brief rundown of the plan to start a new church. He seemed interested, so I asked him if he went to church anywhere. He said, “No, I don’t go to church, but I’m a Presbyterian.” There was an identification with a denomination, even though he would classify himself irreligious. He even named a particular church he would go to if he did choose to visit. I know this is the South and there is a strong culture of church-going here, but I just found this very interesting. There was some kind of identification, but not in a way that mattered in daily life. There was an identification in name only, not in a lived-in reality. The problem with this is that there’s no benefit from the community, and you don’t benefit it either. Continue reading