Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #Exvangelical

Most recents (24)

I cannot go back to the night.
O Truth, O small and unexpected thing,
You have taken so much from me.
How can I bear wisdom's pain?
But I have been shown: and I have seen.

--from "One king's epiphany," by Madeleine L'Engle
I figure some of my #Exvangelical friends might like this quote. fyi @brchastain
(I'm writing a foreword to an upcoming new edition of the book in which this poem appears. The poem is powerful.)
Read 3 tweets
Ok, let's actually consider this 1-star review of the @CBSReligion documentary that I was featured alongside others in because, you know, words have meaning. #Exvangelical
"More" - this is the first documentary to cover the #exvangelical community.

Evangelicals have benefited from sympathetic coverage for....*checks watch*....decades.
"Leftist" - meh, ok. I'm liberal. I would assume most, if not all, others in the documentary are as well. But conservatism is a haven for white supremacists and the GOP has no real interest in excising or condemning that group, so I'll gladly accept the leftist moniker.
Read 13 tweets
Speaking with @chriskratzer for our podcast and he made a great point: so much of evangelicalism is little more than religious addiction cycles. #

How it works: go to church, get revved up for another week to "partner with Jesus" to live a successful Christian life.

During the week (of course) you fail to live up to the standards the preacher told you God expected of you, so you feel bad about yourself. You're a worm, a miserable failure.

Come Sunday, though, you're back in church, ready to get revved up and do it all over again.

Religious hype ensues in the worship.

So it's an addictive religious cycle. This is not only how they keep people under control, they have to come back each Sunday (and all the other activities in the week) to get their "fix" and keep going.

#Exvangelical #EmptyThePews
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Hello, darling #Exvangelical fam. How are you DOING? I know I have been off my Dobson rounds here for quite a while and I am sorry about that. It turns out that being in school is one kind of crazy and being on break is another. Also I met someone and just... things are hectic!
But I miss all of y'all very much and I feel at least semi-ready to jump back into this nonsense again with you. How are you all doing? Tell me how holidays were, tell me how 2019 seems to be going so far. I want to hear all of the things! While you're doing that, let's start.
For anyone who has not been keeping up, we've been going through Dobson's Preparing for Adolescence book chapter by chapter. You can catch up here if you feel so inclined.…
Read 122 tweets
Prime example of how #MindVirus works. It's all tied up with #Identity & #Tribalism & the basic human need to be part of a community. Once you belong, your #LizardBrain is primed to defend the system out of fear. Threaten the thought system, threaten the identity /1 #Exvangelical
When I look at the #Exvangelical phenomena, I see #SocialEvolution at work. Driven by a group of individuals who've reached a level of #personaldevelopment that allows them to become objective of former thought systems & their limitations. The old beliefs now seen as harmful. /2
The former beliefs & thought system becomes "ego alien" which results in resistance in many ways. Anger being prominent, but many feel a need to change the old system. They feel an empathy for those still ensnared in limiting, harmful beliefs. They try to reach out only to find/3
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Bill Gothard was fighting his accusers in court again this week. Here’s an at-a-glance chart of his cult programs & organizations. #IBLP #Gothard #ATI
And two men in Trump’s cabinet have ties to Gothard’s IBLP.…
Read 4 tweets
Thank you! I get so frustrated with the implication that leaving a belief system you've been indoctrinated in since birth is easy if people would just "use reason" or be more intelligent. It's not easy, and it has nothing to do with intelligence!
Everything is designed to keep you in the fold and keep you from questioning. From the demonization (often literally) of any outside sources to the guilting of anyone who asks the wrong questions. This makes it so hard to question as you get older.
And that's without the social aspect. Rejecting evangelicalism can lead to outright rejection by friends and family and at the least it puts strains on relationships. When all your relationships revolve around the church, this can be a high price that discourages questions.
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De facto evangelical businesses include not just mom and pop places but also franchises. I call the closest McDonalds to where I now live “the Jesus McDonalds” b/c it has all these signs about faith up and plays contemporary Christian music. It’s creepy. I am not making this up.
Last time I went there I enjoyed listening to “Stairway to Heaven” while going through the drive-thru. If there’s one transferable skill you get out of growing up evangelical, it’s expert level passive aggression.

#Exvangelical #EmptyThePews
Here’s a picture of the sign you see when you head out of the parking lot of the Jesus McDonalds.
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1. I amplify a lot of fundraising requests. I know this may annoy some of my followers, but I want to take a moment to talk about why I do this. I considered snarking the screenshot posted below with a "Men On the Internet" tweet, but I think I should do this in a serious way.
2. I'm an advocate for the #Exvangelical community, which consists of people who have escaped fundamentalist/evangelical Christianity, an authoritarian and damaging form of Protestantism that upholds white supremacist patriarchy:…

3. We exvies were mostly indoctrinated as children, and many of us are still relatively young and not yet economically established. Or at least the latter. If you haven't lived abusive, authoritarian religion, you don't know how hard it is to leave:…
Read 34 tweets
A thread. My evangelical MIL is over here telling me all her opinions about how she thinks every high school senior should take a short-term mission trip to help them learn how good they have it here in America and I JUST DON’T EVEN KNOW WHERE TO START
1) Impoverished people need real solutions, not high school seniors.
2) Impoverished people don’t exist so we can experience gratitude for our excess.
And then there’s the other side of the coin. The spiritual trauma I’m recovering from is directly related to short-term missions, not from what I witnessed, but from how the leaders treated and indoctrinated us. #exvangelical
Read 11 tweets
If you watched "Deconstructing My Religion" or read "5 Key Moments from the Year of the 'Exvangelicals'"and would like to help our #Exvangelical community continue to expose evangelicalism, supporting people like @NateSparks130 who contribute so much is a great way to do it!
And in case you missed those things, you can watch the @CBSReligion "Deconstructing My Religion," written and produced by @lizkineke, here:…

You can also find it on YouTube, but for some reason, the YouTube video doesn't work in Canada. #EmptyThePews
And here's my #2018InReview piece for @RDispatches, "5 Key Moments from the Year of the 'Exvangelicals.'"…

#ThursdayThoughts #Exvangelical #EmptyThePews
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I've been doing a lot of reading about how power affects empathy and makes it difficult to be good humans. While I'm not quite ready to speak on that (can't wait? Have some links:, I have thoughts on why Evangelicalism is flawed.
According to research ( there is a way to combat the damage of power - making sure to feel not powerful now and again. They suggest having people around you who are able to speak truthfully to you, and don't treat you like a Wise Old One.
At first glance, Evangelical Christianity (EC) ought to have this in the bag. Supposedly, one of their focus points is that ALL of us are fallen, ALL of us are sinful, and ALL of us are powerless, dependent on God for every good thing. Without Him, we can do (and are) nothing.
Read 44 tweets
I did a poll a few weeks back and this essay was the top vote-getter, so today let's come to grips with the religion of Fundamentalism and look at one of Ralphie's most infamous essays: "Coming To Grips With The Religion of Environmentalism"…
This essay was first brought to my attention by @ReaderAdrift who provides a concise summary and warning here.
This is one of the many essays where Ralphie ignores his own statements on "I don't write policy, I win hearts for Christ" and directly instructs lawmakers on how they should vote on key issues if they want to be good Christians. Ralphie is but God's chosen messenger.
Read 23 tweets
It’s the same fear that has radicalized the @GOP and that is driving the disastrous Trump regime, whose base is radical right-wing Christians, white evangelicals first and foremost.…

#MondayMorning #Exvangelical #EmptyThePews #Resist
On a related note, when Trump talks about declaring a national emergency, am I the only one who hears Jar Jar Binks in their head saying “emergency powers”? Not that Trump is nearly smart or skilled enough to be Palpatine.
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I sometimes mention how the dispensationalism of my own background was so wound up in conspiracy theory. I think it’s worth taking a moment to elaborate how this shaped my own #RaptureAnxiety or, perhaps more accurately, #EndTimesParanoia.

Many whose evangelical journeys involved diving into hardcore fundamentalism will find resonances with what I’m talking about, but I want to share my own narrative. #RaptureAnxiety #Exvangelical
When I was around fourteen years old, I found an old book of my dad’s - Satan is Alive and Well on Planet Earth by Hal Lindsey. As you can probably guess, the aim of this book was to convince the reader of the reality of a personal devil. #RaptureAnxiety #Exvangelical
Read 24 tweets
Okay, there are trigger warnings all over this before I post.

This is fucking disgusting.

It's also a lie designed to deny women sexual autonomy.…
It only gets worse, BTW.

This fucking misogynist sentient dumpster fire.

This dude just argued gay marriage is wrong, because dudes don't have hymens.

But yeah..."champion of women."…
This is the same asshat who was preaching rape culture as healthy masculinity.

Read 6 tweets
1. A few thoughts about this thorough and interesting profile of Mike Pence (thanks to @stephenbottomly for pointing me to it). There's good background here on Pence's religious ideology, ambition, and political career.…

#Exvangelical #EmptyThePews
2. I have a couple of quibbles. This one is fairly trivial, but @mckaycoppins, please take note--I'm a Hoosier, and no one in Indiana considers Columbus "a suburb of Indianapolis." By now, some may consider it an exurb, I suppose, but definitely not a suburb.
3. More substantively, as is all too typical for @TheAtlantic, I find this piece annoyingly sympathetic to evangelicals' and other conservative Christians' sense of being "beleaguered." THEY. ARE. NOT. PERSECUTED. They are pathological authoritarians

#Exvangelical #EmptyThePews
Read 17 tweets
1. Okay, I'm finally sitting down to do my own #2018InReview thread. A lot has happened in my life this year. I've made concrete progress as a writer, speaker, activist, and #Exvangelical advocate.. I'm in a transitional space but feeling somewhat more hopeful about the future.
2. I think I'll go essentially chronologically. Back in January, I was teaching what would become my last semester at the University of South Florida in Tampa. I had hoped that maybe another temporary but full-time with benefits position there would come along, but it did not.
3. I was left with the choice of eking out a living as an adjunct instructor with no benefits, or moving back in with my parents in Indiana for a while to try and see if I could keep the momentum up with the popular engagement through writing, podcasts, radio, etc. I'd been doing
Read 57 tweets
My thanks to everybody who has contributed in the replies so far. I've been enriched reading some threads I hadn't previously seen. I also thought it might be good to highlight people who consistently produce quality threads. Will do that here--feel free to add your favorites!
.@NateSparks130 on abuse in Christianity and how evangelicalism is racist. @Teri_Kanefield's legal analysis. @kazweida and @EdOverbeek on politics. @profagagne and @brucewilson on evangelicals and authoritarianism. @ToriGlass on #Exvangelical, race, and sex. #2018YearinReview
.@bekhenson on history of adoption and value of adoptee voices. @cmclymer on life, politics, queer issues. @Stonekettle for astute analysis of Trumpism. @emilyjoypoetry and @hannahpaasch on purity culture. @NataliaAntonova on life and politics. @docrocktex26 on politics and race.
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Hello my darling #Exvangelical fam. What a week, huh? How are you all holding up? Holidays go okay, you surviving? Ready to be fucking DONE with 2018? I know I am. Tell me how you are. <3
You got a Christmas Dobson break last week but it is time for us to dive back in.
Of course it HAS been a pretty long week for a lot of people and if you are not feeling like what you most need going into the new year is to talk about James Dobson, Celestia bless you for your good life decisions. The threads will be here later if you want. Take care of you. <3
If you DO feel like what you most need after time with family this Christmas is to pull apart some of James Dobson's terrible godforsaken approach that impacted so many of us, welcome friends. I got you. Feel free to catch up here if needed.…
Read 112 tweets
On the Sunday after Christmas, it is a tradition in many churches to read John 1:1-18.

It is a beautiful passage that opens the Gospel of John.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being.
What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.
Read 16 tweets
Once upon a time, I was a worship leader at a local church, after having been in music ministry since I was 15. I had helped transform their music ministry with my gifts and time

Then they kicked me out. And that was how I became #Exvangelical. It wasn't originally voluntary.
We had been at this church for 3 years after moving here. We were active, part of a small group we "did life with". 3 kids in the children's ministry. I was the pianist and a vocalist, alternated leading worship with the other leader, a man. We were happy, they were our family.
During a study I was leading in my home, I mentioned that I wasn't complementarian but believed in equality between husband and wife. Our marriage was egalitarian, I gave Bible verses that supported my position. 1 friend apparently felt threatened by this new info.
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What if evangelicals are breaking the first commandment, “you shall have no other gods before me,” by elevating narrow, literalist, manmade interpretations of scripture and church policy and pastoral roles into golden idols whose godlike authority we must heed unilaterally?
What if evangelicals are breaking the second commandment, “you shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below,” by depicting God as a cisgender, heterosexual white able-bodied American man?
What if evangelicals are breaking the third commandment, “you shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God,” by invoking God’s name to protect abusive church leaders and support corrupt politicians and exploit people’s trust and money for personal gain a la prosperity gospel?
Read 11 tweets
Something on my mind recently that I now have reason to post:

How do I understand and trace the contours of evangelicalism as a movement, through analysis/research, garnering insight from myriad exvie stories, and personal experience?

A thread.
Evangelicalism is a movement in tension between two impulses, the first of which is primary:

Impulse 1: Shore up power against the shifting tides of modernity by building a biblicist authority structure and initiating people through crisis conversions.

The biblicist authority structure traditionally revolves around the idea that the Bible from beginning to end consists of inerrant propositional truths, which then form the foundational data for all human knowledge. This was fostered by fundamentalism.

Read 15 tweets

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