Preaching on the street........

Sarah - posted on 10/27/2009 ( 20 moms have responded )

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I'll start by saying that obviously people have the right to freedom speech etc! I'll also say that the people i'm referring to are probably a bit extreme, and not representative of your average Christian!

So, EVERY time i walk down the High Street in my town, there is always someone there preaching about Christianity. 9 times out 10, they are shouting out that we are all condemned to Hell for various reasons.......sex before marriage......drinking.....smoking........being gay......etc.

I've had conversations with some of them in the past, my friend was told that her recently deceased mother would be 'burning in the fires of Hell' because she had died without repenting her sins (my friend and i were 17 at the time)

Do you think that preaching in this manner is a good 'advertisement' for the Christian faith?

The other thing that kind of follows on from this, is Christians, Jehovah's Witnesses's etc, knocking at your door and trying to 'convert' you. I will say tho, those who go 'door to door' are usually a lot more polite and less 'fire and brimstone'.

Do you think if i went door to door telling people there is no God......i would get away with it??

I guess the question is, whether or not you see this form of 'spreading the word' to be beneficial to the faith they are promoting, or harming their cause. For me, it makes me LESS likely to listen to them......

Thoughts?

20 Comments

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Krista - posted on 10/31/2009

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I can remember staying at my grandparents' house one summer when I was about 8 or 9 years old. I answered the door and it was two JW's who shoved a pamphlet in my face and then asked me if I ever contemplate suicide. I was traumatized that the weird strangers at the door wanted to talk about suicide with me! Another time, a group of JW's came to our house and our dog got out (a big black lab puppy) and he spent the entire time with his nose right up the one woman's dress. We all thought it was pretty funny, so we didn't do anything to get him out of there. They ended up leaving before they got their message out. Now, if I get stuck answering the door for JW's I do the same as Jean and tell them I'm athiest and not interested in their religion. I try to be polite, but I don't let them get a word in.

[deleted account]

We used to get a bit of a warning that the bible preachers were about so we used to pretend we weren't home.

There was a time when I had a debate with two elder men, I told them I'm a athiest (my sister was with me at the time and I told her to say we are athiests so they would go away) so they went on to tell me how wrong I was, my sister (I could have killed - I joke - her) opens up her big mouth with "I don't actually know what a athiest is"

I couldn't get rid of them!



The other day while I was at work, my partner (sahd) told me he had bible preachers at our door, he said he wasn't interested and one of the girls said "don't you want to know what your sons future is?".

Jenny - posted on 10/29/2009

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I'd love to, my life revolves around good heartfelt music. Especially that gritty, blues, rock type stuff. Love it.

Dana - posted on 10/29/2009

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(3)No, he knew too. We'd all been going for years. lol (2) Who knows what they're saying those people. One time we were there a lady was dancing he said some shit, not alot, and she was too drunk to notice but, when she left he yelled "Thank God, oh, Thank God the cancer is gone" It was too freakin funny.....nut job.

And yeah, when he's on it he's bad as hell. No pun intended. lol

BTW, you should hear my man, wicked fingers on him too. Bad ass.

Jenny - posted on 10/29/2009

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Ok first off, wicked fingers on that man. Second, WTF! and they are the same puritans saying rock and roll leads to evil behaviour? Third, was your friend pissed at you lol?

Dana - posted on 10/29/2009

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Yeah, I think those people are totally nuts and do way more harm than good to religion. I actually don't like even the moderate ones. It irks the shit out of me when people make a point of being religious or a point of praying in public. It's doing it all for the wrong reasons. My husband and I used to go see this awesome guitar player in Cleveland, OH. He used to be in a band called PG&E and The James Gang back in the day. They were pretty big. Anyhow, half the time you're watching him he's preaching and his songs are bizarre. One time a friend had come with us and we dared him to dance because that's a big time no,no in front of this guy. Next thing you know he's screaming at our friend about how he's a sinner. Our friend yells back that he was a hypocrite because he's playing in a bar and drinking coffee (the guy was anti-anything,so our friend pointed out caffeine being a stimulant) Next thing you know we are being swarmed by everyone in the bar who are yelling at all of us. Let me also add, half of these people we sorta new since we went there almost once a month to see this guy for years. So, we exited the bar with everyone following us and yelling. The guy ends up coming out the side door preaching at us with the mob following us. Then some kid who was praying in front of the stage before the show throws a punch at our friend, big brawl. *eye roll* our friend kicked his ass, thankfully. We then got the f outta there but not before my husband yells to the guitar player/ preacher, Fuck you bitch. Looking back I feel bad because the guy is a bad ass guitar player and he USED to love my husband and would let him sit in and play with him. He never let anyone else unless they were famous. Anyhow, you either catch him on a good night and he plays great or he's on a nutty binge. Sorry for the long post. Just had to share my crazy experience with you all. You've gotta go to YouTube, look for Glenn Schwartz - Reflections on Life about 2 and a half minutes into playing he starts preaching and playing, totally nuts. This one gives you back ground info on him.

Charlie - posted on 10/29/2009

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we have signs on billboards , the back of buses and taxis just saying in large red letter's .

Jesus ... thats it , weird .

Sarah - posted on 10/29/2009

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I had 2 Mormons approach me as i walking home from school with the kids.
They asked what was the most important thing in my life (duh!)
I SOOOOOOO wanted to say 'Sex and drugs' !!!
Anyway, obviously my answer was my family.
They said wouldn't you like to spend all eternity with my family??
I said that i was going to anyway.
They tried to convince me that the only way for me and my family to be together in the 'afterlife' was to be a Mormon. I said that if there is a God, he/she is a kind loving one who wouldn't separate families.

Anyway, they didn't manage to convert me as you may have noticed! LOL!

Johnny - posted on 10/29/2009

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The ones on the street make me laugh. Although, I suppose if I was a believer it would bother me that they were out there making a laughing stock out of my faith. I can't imagine that they ever convince anyone to follow Jesus (or Jehovah or Buddha or the Man in the Moon). I assume that they are suffering from some kind of mental delusion, ignore them, and go on my way. So basically, to me, street preacher = mentally ill.

But anyone coming to my door or preaching to me in any other place better watch out. I've got no patience for someone bothering me trying to push their beliefs. I would never assume that anyone is interested in hearing about my faith or lack of it, so why do they think I give a rat's ass about what they believe about God. The woman at the grocery store who was stupid enough to lecture me about how I hadn't baptized my daughter got an earful right back at her. I hope by the time I was done she was sure that there was a Satan and he had his eyes on her. And the last time the Jehovah's Witnesses came to my door, my hubby was home and I was getting into the shower. I walked to the front door stark naked and asked them to leave. I'm guessing they won't be back. To bad in a way, I've always wanted to hand them some toilet paper, take the Watchtower magazine from their hands and say, "fair trade".

Proselytizing is one of the most disrespectful acts towards another person in a civilized society.

Jenny - posted on 10/28/2009

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I don't mind the ones on the streets so much unless they get in my face. I dismiss them as looney tunes and continue on my way. It is when they come on my property to preach to me that really chokes me. I have had JW's on my doorstep FOUR times this year and each time say "I'm an athiest, not interested, stop coming here." and shut the door. Obviously they don't give a crap . It is VERY disrespectful.

Ez - posted on 10/28/2009

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Nope not a fan. When they come to my door I just quickly say "no thanks" and close it. When I encounter them on the street I ignore them, even if they start talking to me. Sorry but I don't feel the need to be polite to people being so blatantly rude. I will say, though, that I haven't come across any quite to extreme as the ones you've described Sarah (lucky for them I'd say =P)....

So no I do not think it's beneficial to anyone. It's offensive and patronising, whether it be because I don't believe in God, or simply believe in a different God. My friend's family is VERY Catholic. Her father has literally thrown a Jehovah's Witness off his front step because he refused to leave.

To me, an individual's religion, faith and relationship with their God should be personal. I just don't understand this need to convert people. I will always support people's rights to believe what they want, as long as they leave me out of it.

Tawny - posted on 10/27/2009

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That is the one thing that I can not stand is when people stand on the street and try to preach. They look like fools and are fakes...It's great that they want people to know about God but there are other ways to go about it.

JL - posted on 10/27/2009

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I live on a military installation and soliciting and fundraising are not allowed at all..YAY. No nutters knocking on my door, well actually I used to live next to a nutter who constantly knocked on my door at the strangest hours asking to borrow things like nail polish remover and a cup of dog food.

[deleted account]

I don't think it helps their cause at all...I usually just write them off as nutters.

As far as someone knocking on the door-I hate it. I feel as though it's an invasion of my privacy and my home if someone knocks on the door to preach to me-which is why I don't open the door unless it's either someone I know, maintenance (we live in an apartment building right now), or the FedEx/UPS guy. =)

Isobel - posted on 10/27/2009

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I would LOVE it!!! if someone knocked on my door and told me there is no god...we should TOTALLY start doing that ;P

JL - posted on 10/27/2009

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Not a fan of the street preaching but I do enjoy the Harry Christianas...I like to join in the singing and dancing. They can be very entertaining and nice. They are not all fire and brimstone, hell and damnation, like most street preachers.

Sharon - posted on 10/27/2009

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That never happens here in hicksville. But I'd be terribly tempted to smile brightly and walk up openly & friendly and whisper "SATAN LOVES YOU TOO!!"

ME - posted on 10/27/2009

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I would say that it depends on whether or not the objects of the preaching are as fundamentally misinformed as those doing the preaching. I've had many groups come to my door spouting unbelievable falsehoods, that would/could have frightened a less informed individual. I've spent the time setting them straight for their own benefit, and in the hopes that they will educated themselves before continuing their evangelizing.

I've also seen street "Preachers" shouting and condemning others to hell...I think this causes them and their faith far more harm than good. It doesn't turn people on to bully or frighten them; preaching love, forgiveness, joy, hope, etc...would get their cause more attention, and possibly more followers!

I have to agree, it always seems slightly more sinister when they involve little children in their shouting and condemning.

[deleted account]

No, I don't think this kind of preaching is always a good advert for any faith including the Christian faith. However, It's not something that can be legislated against in a free society.

Yes you would get away with preaching that there was no God if you belenged to a group that had this belief system. You would also get away with preaching that there is more than one god if you had such a belief system. People can preach what they want and belong to any group they like.

Even though I don't agree with everything that gets preached to me in the street or from other religious groups, it still makes me thank God that I live in a free society where people can express themselves.

Esther - posted on 10/27/2009

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I was on the subway the other day and there was a woman on there doing that very same thing. Shouting at the top of her lungs about us all being sinners and going to hell unless we accepted Jesus Christ etc. What made it worse, at least for me, was that she had a little boy with her (about 6 years old, I assume her grandson). He was trying to make himself invisible by crawling into a corner. It's one thing to put yourself out there like that (and she would have annoyed me even if she had just been by herself), but I couldn't help but feel sorry for the little boy.



As for good advertising - FAR from it. But then again, I don't like to be bullied or scared or bribed into doing anything and that's what this feels like to me.

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