What will church look like...after Covid-19

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lostinmiddlemormonism
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What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by lostinmiddlemormonism » Sun Apr 26, 2020 2:01 pm

I understand that I am talking to a group of people that are mostly dissatisfied with church as it exists anyway, but I have been having conversations with TBM family and friends that seem to be happier with house church than they are with the local ward offerings.

Things that I have been hearing is that:
  • They feel more spiritual
    They are less stressed
    Meetings are pointless because people are find so way did we spend all this time in meetings before
    I like being able to ask questions with my family friends/and not being criticized
    I feel less judgement at house church
    I like being able to dress up or not as I feel
    I like being able to set whatever time we are going to have church at home
    We can have long lessons or short lessons as needed
So I am curious if you are hearing similar reports from your TBM family and friends. I haven't heard many people that are disappointed that reopening church is delayed. No one really seems to miss it (I am sure these people exist but don't seem very vocal about it).

I have been really surprised by some of the individuals that are starting to realize that perhaps their spiritual life is better without church than with it.

So what do you think it will look like when they do tell us that we are supposed to come back?

-lost

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Hagoth
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by Hagoth » Sun Apr 26, 2020 7:52 pm

In sure there will be plenty of shame heaped on members if they don't come flocking back in record numbers. The bigger problem might be the percentage of people who feel dread about returning and realize maybe they don't need church at all.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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moksha
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by moksha » Sun Apr 26, 2020 11:40 pm

The COVID-19 virus could leave us with a younger membership and leadership.
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
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hmb
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by hmb » Mon Apr 27, 2020 6:12 am

I think there will be many who don't want to go back to the way it was, but would never state it out loud. Quiet obedience is an important part of the church. You may not like or understand something, but obedience is key.

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Exiled
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by Exiled » Mon Apr 27, 2020 8:08 am

Some may like not having to go to church and will continue to stay away once the restrictions are done. Given my own experience, the more one stays away from boring church, the more one realizes there are so many other worthwhile activities to do on a sunday, like, for example, sleeping in or shopping or playing golf or going to the movies or reading a good book or just about anything.

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Linked
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by Linked » Mon Apr 27, 2020 11:47 am

My bishop dearly misses the opportunity to worship together, according to his occasional emails.

My DW doesn't miss teaching primary. Other than that I haven't heard much from my TBMs.
"I would write about life. Every person would be exactly as important as any other. All facts would also be given equal weightiness. Nothing would be left out. Let others bring order to chaos. I would bring chaos to order" - Kurt Vonnegut

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Red Ryder
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by Red Ryder » Mon Apr 27, 2020 12:24 pm

I finally have a testimony of the true order of the weekend! 48 real hours! Second Saturday. The ability to unwind and relax, work on projects around the house, feel like a normal human being!

Church just kills that feeling.

I don’t think there’s a way I can go back to dressing up and sitting in a smelly chapel counting ceiling tiles for 120 minutes.

I’m going to have to do something drastic and refuse to go.
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

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alas
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by alas » Mon Apr 27, 2020 1:24 pm

My DH misses going, but he is REALLY chafing under the stay at home/social distancing thing. Every day he finds some excuse to get out of the house and interact with people. I kinda like it because he has taken over grocery shopping and me, I am too proud to use the electric chair cart and too crippled to make it to the back of the grocery store without hurting.

My son and DIL are really enjoying it. They say home church is much more spiritual and if someone has a real question, the kind you just don’t ask at church, they can get on line and research. My newly awakened feminist DIL is pissed that they didn’t allow women who don’t have priesthood in the home any way to have the sacrament. She says it would have been so easy to allow them to have sacrament blessed over the phone, but apparently the women are not worth accepting that maybe priesthood doesn’t have to be right there, in person, that the priesthood is apparently too weak to travel over telephone or internet. My son did voice that he really dreads ever going back.

I really think that many people will hold out until there is a vaccine, because they are not in any hurry to go back, and if they are high risk, it only makes sense to keep up the social distancing for safety reasons.

Mackman
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by Mackman » Mon Apr 27, 2020 2:45 pm

I enjoy having church at home so I dont really have to put up with the people who like to take over lessons and conversations, you guys know what I am talking about every branch or ward has at least one of those kind of persons. I also like not getting dressed up and the non drive is great !!!! Love it want more of it hope we keep it !!!

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A New Name
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by A New Name » Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:18 pm

Check out This Reddit post over at the very TBM sub called r/latterdaysaints. He said while home church is hard, it is so much better that going to church, and he is not looking forward to returning. I was wondering how this didn't get removed, as they normally remove anything even slightly against the church. But then I read the comments, and almost all said the exact same thing! They love stay at home church, and don't want to go back. Sounds like the church has a problem!

Best comment: I haven't had a bad come follow me lesson all month, no one's said anything racist or preached false doctrine over the pulpit, and it's been a real boost to my testimony seeing all these people do wonderful things in a time of absolute mayhem.

lostinmiddlemormonism
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by lostinmiddlemormonism » Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:39 pm

A New Name wrote:
Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:18 pm
Check out This Reddit post over at the very TBM sub called r/latterdaysaints. He said while home church is hard, it is so much better that going to church, and he is not looking forward to returning. I was wondering how this didn't get removed, as they normally remove anything even slightly against the church. But then I read the comments, and almost all said the exact same thing! They love stay at home church, and don't want to go back. Sounds like the church has a problem!

Best comment: I haven't had a bad come follow me lesson all month, no one's said anything racist or preached false doctrine over the pulpit, and it's been a real boost to my testimony seeing all these people do wonderful things in a time of absolute mayhem.
This is EXACTLY what I am hearing as well, and what I was trying to convey in the initial post. I think there are going to be a lot of people that either don't go back or resent going back if they do. Seems like a lot of TBM's coming out of the woodwork going, 'yeah, it wasn't really all that great to begin with'.

If could be interesting.

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nibbler
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by nibbler » Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:40 pm

My standard soapbox.

The church is by the extroverts and for the extroverts. The extroverts whose social life centers around the church have probably become increasingly desperate for social interaction during the quarantine and will return as soon as they feel safe doing so... and feeling safe to return may lag significantly behind the date the church reopens officially.

As an introvert church felt like hell. I didn't recognize it at the time but after I was able to create a little mental separation I saw how elements of the culture tie people's sense of worthiness to how well a person can adapt to being an extrovert. For the introvert it comes down to participate in the programs and feel like crap (because you aren't an extrovert) or don't participate in the programs and feel like crap (because of guilt and the near constant pressure and measuring to see how well you're coming along with the programs).

So I bet whether someone is itching to go return or whether someone would be fine never going back comes down to whether they're an introvert or an extrovert.

For the believing introvert, church occupies the role of uncomfortable duty, "you gotta do what you gotta do," than something that was actually enjoyed. This quarantine has given them a break from the burden they're only carrying because they believe they have to.
We see things not as they are, but as we are ourselves. - H.M. Tomlinson

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A New Name
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by A New Name » Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:51 pm

nibbler wrote:
Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:40 pm

So I bet whether someone is itching to go return or whether someone would be fine never going back comes down to whether they're an introvert or an extrovert.

For the believing introvert, church occupies the role of uncomfortable duty, "you gotta do what you gotta do," than something that was actually enjoyed. This quarantine has given them a break from the burden they're only carrying because they believe they have to.
There is probably something here. I would expect that reddit, and all online forums to some degree seem to draw introverts. So maybe there is something to not wanting to go back and those that are vocal online are introverts to begin with.

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nibbler
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by nibbler » Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:52 pm

The reddit link is interesting and I agree with many comments made there as well. Sunday was never a day of actual rest for the Mormon church. It was a day to do lots of work for church.
Red Ryder wrote:
Mon Apr 27, 2020 12:24 pm
I finally have a testimony of the true order of the weekend! 48 real hours! Second Saturday. The ability to unwind and relax, work on projects around the house, feel like a normal human being!

Church just kills that feeling.
The wheels really started coming off for me when I reached the point where I was at church over 7 hours each Sunday. One day it hit me, even as an orthodox believer... I was looking more forward to work on Monday than I was to church on Sunday. I knew something was off about this "day of rest."

I've said this in a different forum:

Scripture says that god rested on the seventh day, it doesn't say god rested from his labor so he could dedicate a day of labor to the next god up the chain. God rested. Period. I don't know why/when man decided that a day of rest meant going down a massive checklist of stuff for a church.

It's sad that people only feel comfortable reclaiming their time and energy when a pandemic takes that decision out of their hands. And I lump myself in with that group.

I'm in no rush to return. If you want to stream a Sunday meeting over zoom or whatever, I'm down. I can listen in one ear and play video games with the other... just like being at church. ;)
We see things not as they are, but as we are ourselves. - H.M. Tomlinson

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2bizE
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by 2bizE » Tue Apr 28, 2020 9:04 am

I think it will probably look just like it did before the pandemic.
The first Sunday back will probably be a fast and testimony meeting. TBMs will praise RMN for the study at home program and how inspired he is...
Those on the fringe will remain there or fade away. Missionary work will be a top priority because convert numbers will be down for the year.
I can say my family has been more spiritually fed with the Sunday home church in a few Sundays than years of going to the building.
I am also an Introvert living in an Extrovert world. I’m content staying at home and will likely take use home church as a good excuse to not go. Can likely corral my wife into this thought as my kids hate regular church but have done well with 20 minute home church.
At some point the Bishop will text out that Home sacrament priesthood power is revoked and you have to go to the building to experience Christ in your lives again...
~2bizE

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Red Ryder
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by Red Ryder » Tue Apr 28, 2020 9:36 am

2bizE wrote:
Tue Apr 28, 2020 9:04 am
At some point the Bishop will text out that Home sacrament priesthood power is revoked and you have to go to the building to experience Christ in your lives again...
TBM hat on: Members should voice concern about going back and request the authorization to continue home church and sacrament indefinitely.

TBM hat off: Authorization of the sacrament is stupid. Just stay home and do what’s best for your family. If you decide to break and eat bread and drink a thimble of water of your own decision making, I doubt god will care if it was authorized or not. Same goes for choosing your own underwear.
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

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blazerb
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by blazerb » Tue Apr 28, 2020 6:56 pm

Red Ryder wrote:
Tue Apr 28, 2020 9:36 am

TBM hat on: Members should voice concern about going back and request the authorization to continue home church and sacrament indefinitely.

TBM hat off: Authorization of the sacrament is stupid. Just stay home and do what’s best for your family. If you decide to break and eat bread and drink a thimble of water of your own decision making, I doubt god will care if it was authorized or not. Same goes for choosing your own underwear.
It took me quite a while to realize that this authorization thing was just made up. It's a way to maintain the imaginary authority of the leadership.

I think a lot of people will head back to church when this is over, but there will be those who found spirituality in the quiet of a Sunday afternoon with time to think and pray in the way they find best. Sunday meetings won't work again for some of them.

hmb
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by hmb » Wed Apr 29, 2020 6:05 am

Linked wrote:
Mon Apr 27, 2020 11:47 am
My bishop dearly misses the opportunity to worship together, according to his occasional emails.
I get these emails too. Missing being together... I don't buy it. It must be nice not to have to do all the meetings, being away from family, etc. I can imagine an email, at least from many, that states how glad they are to not have to deal with the meeting madness. If they feel that way, they probably feel guilty for feeling that way.

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RubinHighlander
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by RubinHighlander » Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:27 am

hmb wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 6:05 am
Linked wrote:
Mon Apr 27, 2020 11:47 am
My bishop dearly misses the opportunity to worship together, according to his occasional emails.
I get these emails too. Missing being together... I don't buy it. It must be nice not to have to do all the meetings, being away from family, etc. I can imagine an email, at least from many, that states how glad they are to not have to deal with the meeting madness. If they feel that way, they probably feel guilty for feeling that way.
I know there are some bishops that get off on the militaristic structure of meetings and the authority crap. But I'm betting more than half of them are really enjoying this vacation away from a large flock of children and adults treated like children.

The sacrament thing will be interesting, trying to take back control by telling your Male members they are no longer allowed to do it at home when the doors to the local ward house open for business again. I'm betting that will rub a lot of people the wrong way and create some cogdis, as has the lone female members who are not special enough to bless their own bread and water.

DW's boss is a big time TBM but he's expressed to her multiple times how nice it has been not going and how hard it will be to go back. And he has five kids at home, from newborn to 13.
“Sir,' I said to the universe, 'I exist.' 'That,' said the universe, 'creates no sense of obligation in me whatsoever.”
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Palerider
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Re: What will church look like...after Covid-19

Post by Palerider » Wed Apr 29, 2020 2:34 pm

The control of priesthood ordinances has been around since the beginning of the church.

My BIL was in the military and served in Turkmenistan with his family numerous years ago. They had to get permission from an area authority in order to have the sacrament at home.

If you think of it from a TBM Q15 point of view, the Great Apostasy occurred because there were no Apostles around exercising their keys to ensure the ordinances were performed properly and that doctrine stayed pure.

The little guys always screw this up when left to their own devices.

False prophets begin to abound. They start teaching stuff like plural marriage, conflicting and phony new scriptures. Pretend revelations. Water is okay in the sacrament instead of fruit of the vine. God was once a man like us. You know....crazy crap.

It gets pretty bad in a hurry.....where would we be without priesthood keys. ;)
"There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily."

"Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains to bring it to light."

George Washington

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