July 6, 2010
The church in the West is raising functional atheists (those who confess with their mouths but live as if there is no God) because they have capitulated to late capitalism. Thus, we're impotent to engage the material world in meaningful ways. So what is the church ministry about if we're raising functional atheists? "Therapeutic, consumer deism." Ministry tends to imbibe (especially liberal Christianity) therapy, consolation (to the point that suffering from illness or grief is picking up and carrying one's cross), and maybe even passion for "issues" with no depth of engaging those issues. We love the idea of love, but do not actually love. We think that reading a book in a class means having done what the book talks about (whether contemplative prayer, social justice, or living simply). Thus, our essential action is apathy produced by consumerism that pacifies us and aids in the essential goal of self-actualization: the realization that the individual is all that matters. Atheism declares there is no god. So does the church if the church will not begin to live alternatively in dominant story of late capitalism.