Saturday, August 28, 2010

My First Mega Church

To get a flavour of my new South Carolina home of Greenville, I thought I'd sample the local hospitality and attend a Mega Church, the Redemption World Outreach Center, that's just a few miles from my new home.

For a start, it's not a church; it's a campus! In addition to the "Main Sanctuary", a sports stadium sized arena where the Voodoo takes place, the 10,500 strong congragation are privy to a gym, basketball court, and Family Fitness Center, a preschool, a bookstore, cafateria, a regular Chapel, a "City Transformation Center", (transformation to what?), and a "Power Source Building", (to transform 'older' children). Sounds scary right?


Well, the service, lead by "Apostle" (*face palm*) Ron Carpenter, was an exquisitly executed event that used social psychology to whip up the deluded into a frenzy of Jesus love. Lights, cameras, loud music, and stage performances akin to a rock concert, sporting event or politicl rally, that had the faith heads literally dancing in the asles full of the love of a guy that was executed 2000 years ago. In other words, an abortion doctor murderer breeding ground.


I have no problem with people having a good time, but to so passionatly follow this supernatural garbage at the expense of reason is at best delusional and at worst dangerous. Here's a secular video that instills the same sence of passion in us that's based on our evolutionary heratige - the need for community. "I get by with a little help from my friends" Go Joe Cocker!


12 comments:

  1. Wow! You got the full-on Megachurch experience. I've been to plenty of them. Some of my wife's family members won't go to any church under 2000 members.

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  2. Indeed, that place is loony. But mega-churches are easy pickings. If you live in Greenville, SC, I suggest you go to St. Mary's downtown on Washington street.

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  3. It is evident that you do not accept that Jesus Christ as the Son of God came to this earth and died for the sins of all humanity, so that we could experience life according to John 10:10 even "more abundantly". It seems that you did not go looking for an experience with Jesus Christ, but to find something that you could make fun of and sense it did not fit your theology there must not be anything to it. I am sorry that your experience was bad, but only eternity will tell whether they are a cult. If they are wrong then eternity will tell, but if you are wrong in your judgements of Christ and this church, then I am sure that eternity will tell on that too. Oh, and by the way I do not live in Greenville, nor attend Redemption. Just believe that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, the "King of Kings and Lord of Lords".

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  4. Ok for a religion that forces its members to call their pastor "father" and that makes their members confess their sins to a human being just like themselves to call anything a cult is disturbing. Your made up religion has brain washed people into thinking that God only chooses certain people to have a relationship with. And if you're not that chosen person then you have to rely on a "father" to relay the message to God. This may come as a shock, but God is the ONLY father. Read your bible. God tells us that he wants us to praised him loudly. Not glued to a church pew while a priest speaks as if he's conducting a funeral. I myself attend Redemption. And I love every second of it. Nothing has been preached there that I haven't found in the bible myself. You should be ashamed of yourselves for trying to imitate God and call your members your "children". If that's not a cult then I don't know what is. I'll be praying for you and the entire Catholic "religion". I may even start a prayer chain for yall at Redemption. God Bless You.

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  5. I attended Redemption from their beginning until I professed atheism in high school. I became atheist because all I ever heard at Redemption was about making money. Their theology is pick and choose. There is no historical basis for their "theology." The early church was conducted in order (not shouting or other manic sensationalism), shared all things in common (this idea would send members fleeing from Redemption) and had a set core of beliefs--read the writings of the early church fathers and the Didache of the Apostles. I now belong to the Eastern Orthodox Church which Christ founded, not by a man (whom I still respect) that calls himself an apostle. My church traces its roots and beliefs all the way back to the day of Pentecost. As for the member taking shots at Roman Catholics, you are ignorant of your Bible. The Bible says to confess your sins/faults to one another. David the Prophet and King confessed his sins to Nathan the Prophet after lying with Bathsheba. Matthew 3:6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins. Acts 19:18 And many that believed came, and confessed, and shewed their deeds. Christ gave authority to his apostles to bind and loose sin.John 20:21-23. You clearly have a biased view of the Roman Catholic church. As for being glued to a pew: St. Paul exhorts believers to be decent and to do things in order 1 Cor 14:40. And as for calling the Catholic church a "religion," your "pseudo-Christian-money-centered religion" was started in 1906. Everybody knows that the Catholic church is way older. How do you trust a church that was started 2,000 years after the death of our Lord? So before you judge another faith, judge first yourself and then your faith. Redemption is getting kids off the streets and God commends them for that. And please, put all of us on your prayer chain. We all need prayer.

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  6. The place is not for everyone. I've been attending it for 2 weeks now and each service is a complete blessing. The pastor is a man of God who isn't afraid to speak every word of truth that comes directly from the Bible. The music is wonderful! It's so driven by the Holy Spirit, and it does fill you and make you want to dance around! This church has been such a blessing for me. Not everyone enjoys the loud in your face sermons of serious truth, deep wisdom and understanding. It's perfect for me. Try going to a Baptist church, they keep things quiet (-:

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  7. Who are you to judge? Apparently you didn't get past the eighth grade judging from your poor use of spelling and grammar. I suggest you buy a dictionary and look up the word cult. Cults don't encourage people to think for themselves. Cults don't allow you to come and go as you please. No one at RWOC has ever asked me to give up loved ones or earthly possessions. Don't be so quickto put a label on something you don't understand. But, then again why would you understand. The Bible tells us to be joyful in our praise. Did you know that David danced before God until he danced out of his clothes? Who said Christians can't enjoy themselves in the presence of God? It's not a frenzy...it's joyous praise.

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  8. I love going to World Redemption Outreach. It's a beautiful experience and I also enjoy service at Baptists and Catholic churches. People are different and God has led a way for all to worship. Your relationship with God is what is important. Or in the articles authors concern, your lack of a relationship with God is what's important. I have never left that Church with anything but positive vibes. Love love love it!

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  9. alot of Ron Carpenters messages are centered around things that people are sensitive about. Ie. Self esteem, finances and the things of the world. I attended this church for three years and I loved it. But then God saved me. I more attend a church that preaches the true gospel of Jesus Christ. And they don't teach these things at redemption. I pray for the regeneration of all those who don't know Jesus. Just know you dont receive blessings, when the preacher says if you want a blessing walk around the church. And you dont become saved by going to alter call and reciting the sinners prayer. This is the truth. and of course you love going. Who wouldn't love going to a party with lots of entertainment every week?

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  10. Many people prefer megachurch size because they dont have to be in the same "everybody knows everybody" situation if they have been a victim of hurtful gossip in the past. I would attend lakewood if in Texas but Osteen does not demand his members to call him father or any crap like that. its just pastor.

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  11. One man's search for "flavor" eventually has to find others enjoying their ice cream. Sure it's a different taste, but better even if it's without the presence of joe cocker. Allow me to lick this down to the cone pal.

    As far as "getting by with a little help from my friends", in the secular world, they all love to talk about what they should have done, in front of the casket. Little too late for friends' help then, huh? I guess getting high (jest of the song moron), makes for numbing the reality of who's life is in suicidal shambles, in your fake peer group.

    Your frivolous comparison is to justify one's fear of intangibles, clearly written of in the Holy Scriptures.

    What's next, a denial of the virgin birth since it doesn't fit into this scenery of tangibles? After all, a virgin birth is just too dang weird to fit into the world's common sense narrative. Never mind the lack of logic in leadership.

    I guess we should just rip out Acts ch 2 just for you. After all, it was just a bunch of drunks whipped up into a frenzy, right? Of course the prophets of baal in the "Elijah showdown" seemed somewhat comparable to the secularized, rock influenced. My apologies to southern rockers, (I are one of dem. "running like the wind" baby.)

    Since Eden, there has always been a parallel counterfeit. But, as God swapped her desire of the tree, for the desire of her man, He still is in the replacement business. It's like replacing furniture. It's not enough to move out the old, but you must also get some new. If not, you sit on the floor long enough, you go to the curb and bring that old sofa back in. After a few weeks of weather worn aging, it's a lot worse. It's just an illustrative way to help you understand, these people have replaced joe with Jesus. And, no one had to get high either.

    BTW, I apologize for the "moron" comment.............naaaaah, I take it back. You are truly a moron, but I do mean that as a loving jab. I really do. I suspect you can take a ribbing. Unless of course you are just another atheist, liberal. Though I don't believe in atheists, (I'm an atheist atheist. I don't believe they exist), I do respect the ability to have more faith in nothing than I have in God. That is, just in case an atheist really exist (perhaps I've evolved into agnosticism over atheists).

    If you're a liberal too, I'm sure I'm already pigeonholed as a bigot because of my faith. Since all the black folk there, I'm sure you were torn up not being able to tie racism to your illustration too.

    Now I do believe liberalism exist, just not enough of the right kind. The evil kind. You know, like dogs that leave crap all around that others have to gingerly step around so as to not hurt the feelings, of the same watching, over sensitive dogs. I pigeonhole them the offspring of the accuser. It's a fact that demoniacs have nothing in their arsenal, but conjecture, rumor, assumption, whining........etc, the list is listless.

    Anyway, why don't you put away your cowardly comfort zone of comparisons and come over to the deep side? We won't let you drown. After all, Joe Cocker don't care about me except his agent exploits me for the price of a concert ticket. I can idolize Joe till my knees are red and my tear ducts dry, but Joe ain't going home with me. Jesus does!!!

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  12. Mega "Churches" are in no way Christian. RWOC is definitely a dangerous cult. IF you want to see a real authentic expression of Christianity, there are other places you can go. RWOC is the last place I would go. Steer clear of Brookwood, North Hills, or any of that rubbish!

    I became Greek Orthodox several years ago, and would recommend it to anyone. Unfortunately, we have an Allen electronic mockery of an organ, but I still wouldn't go anywhere else.

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