I am not a religious none nor do I desire to be one. I should make note first however, I am not a member of any church community. In fact, I have not been a regular attendee of church for about forty years. Publishing his book Post Christian in 2020, G. Edward Veith writes, “…I contend that many, if not most of the nones, do not want to be part of a community, especially a religious community” (p. 241).
As I near the end of his book, Post Christian, I must say that I pretty much agree with everything he examines throughout (G. Edward Veith, 2020), up to this point. Even after this point, I tend to agree with him as he continues on and writes, “They don’t like being welcomed, standing up and introducing themselves, urged to share their feelings in front of other people, standing around at coffee hour having to make small talk,” (Veith, 2020, p.241). But do new church attendees have to submit to these things? These things will of course come in time as a new member becomes more familiar with their new surroundings and fellow believers so can we just have the goldfish bowl welcoming committee slow down a little bit?
I do want to be part of a church community. I look forward to someday soon regularly attending a church. But for me, it’s not such an easy thing to do. I should mention at this point that I have a Bachelors of Divinity and recently earned my Masters in Ministry.
And no, I do not make up my own theology adhered to by no one other than myself. My beliefs are not based on how I feel, (Veith, 2020, p.241). I am a protestant and suppose I have been once since birth as I was raised in the Lutheran church, which I left on the fence of exiting my teens.
Much of my Master’s degree was visited through Wesleyan theology. With the Covid mess somewhat off the stage now, I have been watching the Sunday morning sermons of a local church which I recently discovered to be Baptist. I am still working out, with God, if this is the church I look to join very soon.
In my everyday studies and reading, I see a good deal of research and surveys conducted by Barna and Pew, and I can understand and relate to it well. But I still keep my iPhone handy waiting for one of them to call and survey me and I check my email every morning—waiting to be counted—still nothing.
Technically, I am sure someone out there will consider me a religious none. I am indeed not associated with any church organization or denomination. But that doesn’t necessarily mean I wouldn’t consider joining one.