A ten year old girl, going to sleep away camp for the first time. Being adventurous, the camp chosen is far out in the rural countryside, a world away from the city and suburbs that the girl knows. Before arriving at the camp, she knows no one else there. Adjustment is not easy, but since most of the girls at the camp come from the same area, she finds a friend or two. One day, the campers go on a field trip, to the local County fair. This being a bygone and far more innocent age, the campers did not have to walk through the fair in long strings, holding hands and counting off. Everyone wore shirts identifying them as from the camp, and as long as everyone showed up at the appointed place and time for attendance checks, the girls were free to wander.
Our girl visited the chickens and admired the 4-H rabbits, and then walked through the area with the craft and souvenir tables. Passing one table, a woman called out "Camp girl, do you know Jesus?" (yes, she actually called out "camp girl." damn t-shirt.) Politely, the girl answered "No, I'm Jewish." At which point, the woman came out from behind the table, along with 3 other people (2 other women, 1 man) and surrounded the girl. There was talk of Jesus dying for someones sins, even though she and her people killed him. There was talk of hellfire. There was no sense of personal space for the girl, nor any space between the sentences for her to speak, even if she had any idea of how to respond to this.
This is not the behavior of people sharing good news. This is the behavior of predators.
Finally, one of the camp counselors appeared, as the girl had missed one of the check-ins. At the sight of an approaching adult in a camp t-shirt, the girls hands were shoved full with pamphlets, "your mother will want them" she was told, and the 4 people went back behind their table. Needless to say, the counselor wanted to know what was going on, and as the girl and the counselor rejoined the rest of the people from the camp, the girl told the story. There was a bit of shrugging, but as the girl didn't get in trouble for missing check in, she was relieved.
During the car ride back to the camp, the driver (a local employee of the camp) stopped short and suddenly at an intersection. She then started joking about all the near accidents she has had over the years while driving campers and how even the "little Jewish girls" would start saying their rosaries. How she always had a extra one with her, "just in case one of them wanted one." She seemed to be completely convinced that she was being amusing.
This was not the behavior of a "born again fundie" but it was the behavior of someone whose religion and belief hold complete disdain (at best) for someone who does not believe as they do.
After Jason posted his Father Matthew video, http://strategicsorcery.blogspot.com/2010/07/blog-post.html
he professed surprise at the reactions he got to the post. While I can't speak for anyone else, my reaction, first and foremost was to this line: "Certainly among non-Christians, there is nothing that makes them less comfortable than the idea of Evangelism. The fact is though that it is a duty of Christians to evangelize."
Uncomfortable? Now why would you think that might be?
The video is not actually about evanglizing or reaching out to non-Christians, but rather counteracting, amongst Christians the onslaught of the fundamentalist movement. To which all I can say is: fine, clean your own house, and then we will talk about my discomfort.
Oh-and the reaction of the mother of the girl to this story and the pamphlets? Do you know the phrase "Hell has no fury...?"