Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #exvangelical

Most recents (24)

Most days I don’t label myself an #exvangelical. And then most days I see a story or tweet (too often from people I know and whom I wrongly hoped knew better) that makes me pretty sure I’d probably rather label myself an #exvangelical.
Such conflicting sentiments came to the forefront of my thinking and writing when @IvanTable approached me a month or so ago about a piece for him and @TGC. Today, that essay (with its deliciously bland title—why are titles often so blah?) meets the rest of the world.
Ostensibly on the ways evangelicals ought to treat Jonathan Edwards the enslaver, I turn to James Baldwin & Wendell Berry to offer some thoughts on history versus “heritage,” maybe allowing me to forestall a decision about such a label and personal identity a little while longer.
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So, the exvangelical movement has now got a Wikipedia page! So far it only mentions @brchastain and myself, and doesn't include hashtags beyond #exvangelical and #EmptyThePews.

Do we have any exvies or keen observers out there who are also established Wiki editors?
Because it would be great to see this article expanded some. I don't know what the norms and expectations are for someone who is mentioned in an article to make adjustments to it and have never made a Wikipedia login or ever done more than a couple edits:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exvangeli…
Obviously #ChurchToo and the people who started it should be included, and I'd love to see the #ExposeChristianSchools episode covered (of course I'm biased on that one), and there are other people and projects that ought to be there. But can I add stuff as an interested party?
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Getting a number of “disliking Jesus is racist” comments in my mentions.

Look, I do I empathize with Jesus as a minoritized person living under occupation.

“You have to like Jesus individually or you’re a bigot” is still a hell of a take. It’s not a fair demand on anyone
People are complicated. And Jesus is in a sense both “more” and “less” than a person. Less, because we have very little information about the possible historical Jesus from the very distant past—he’s probably a composite person anyway, and what we have is a mythologized figure
But also more, because Jesus has such incredible cultural influence and symbolic power for literally billions of people alive today, and looms large in history—a mostly imperial and colonialist history in which Christianity went hand in hand with oppressive state power
Read 19 tweets
Yep. Actually listening to us is a severe ego threat that they refuse to face.

Thankfully, they’ve lost control of the narrative, which is the only reason they’re talking about exvangelicals at all.

And in that at least I find a dose of comforting schadenfreude
Here are some links to my relevant work for anyone who could use some context:

religiondispatches.org/evangelicals-i…

religiondispatches.org/have-white-eva…
I also wrote this open letter to @drmoore addressing comments he made about exvies. He did not deign to respond

flux.community/chrissy-stroop…
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Yes, we owe it to people of Afghanistan to accept numerous refugees.

No, we can’t make that happen by calling evangelicals “not true Christians.”

The critique of hypocrisy doesn’t affect them, but this framing *does* reinforce the very Christian hegemony that lets them run amok
Hand-wringing pundits have been criticizing evangelicals as hypocrites regularly since 2016. Hypocrisy is a baked in feature of authoritarianism, but what so many Americans refuse to acknowledge—it is crucial to face this—is that Christianity is not always or inherently benign
No complex cultural system subject to communal differentiation and internal contestation—and religions are such systems—is benign in its entirety or in its every iteration.

Religious traditions are multivalent.

There’s no “one true way” to do any such complex system
Read 39 tweets
OK, so I live in the nearest the UK has to a Bible Belt, the biggest concentration of evangelical churches. This is historical. It goes back to a revival. I want to talk about that.

1/
In evangelical mythology, a Revival is a big movement where loads of people start going to church more. In South Wales, this famously happened in 1904, and had consequences for evangelicalism across Asia and Africa, especially in South Korea, because Revivals make missionaries 2/
Here in Wales, evangelicals are still looking for that 1904 energy. But it won't ever happen again. And they're sort of in denial about that. 3/
Read 31 tweets
Going to retweet some of the New Yorker article with parts that stuck out to me as it illustrates why I started questioning complementarianism and eventually decided this whole debate is fit only for the trash can.

This will be a thread, and probably a long one. 01/?
"For a time, Barr fell under the sway of an abusive boyfriend, who, while menacing her, spat Scripture demanding her submission. The fact that she couldn’t question him made it harder to see the abuse for what it was."

02/?
The first time I ever felt called on to use counseling training was when a young woman I worked with confided in me that her then-boyfriend was mentally, verbally, and socially cruel to her. Neither were saved, but I realized "complementarianism" had no category for this. 03/?
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"Did the silent god speak, in that stillness?
I strained to listen, but he wasn't there."

On growing up in the shadow of war and a distant god, reclaiming lost things, and the memory of a forest. "Forest Full of Mines" is up:
patreon.com/posts/53937140 #amwriting #exvangelical
Now up as public post with photos. Thanks again to @C_Stroop for inspiring me to start finding the words to talk about these things in earnest, and to my friends Cora and Vera for listening last night as I finished writing this.

Support my continued work: Patreon.com/riversidewings
@KarlieChronicle, this might be of interest to you.
Read 4 tweets
And it's not just that we're stakeholders. We bring a uniquely informed insider-outsider perspective.

To escape from authoritarian evangelical subculture, we had to learn to understand how other people think. The process teaches us to "translate" evangelicalism, a valuable skill
Much of my work is engaged in precisely that project of "translation." It matters because conservative, mostly white evangelicals' politics, as a real threat to democracy and human rights, affects us all

cstroop.com/2018/06/14/esc…

religiondispatches.org/author/chrissy…

conversationalist.org/writer/chrissy…
Here are some further thoughts along those lines, along with more information about the loose #exvangelical movement

damemagazine.com/2020/08/20/wha…
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Thank you, @NBCJoshua, for inviting #exvangelical @brchastain on your show last night to talk about evangelical Christianity's declining numbers and Christian Right politics! We exvies are stakeholders in these discussions but not treated as such in the media nearly often enough
As one of the original admins of @brchastain's 10,000+ strong #exvangelical Facebook group and a writer and commentator myself, I've been calling for journalistic attention to the exvangelical phenomenon for years. Here's hoping we've turned a corner

religiondispatches.org/evangelicals-i…
Here's @RawStory's writeup of @brchastain's MSNBC segment, with a link to the video at the end

rawstory.com/evangelical-me…
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Hey good morning everybody, that sure was fun with the David Jeremiah tweet yesterday, but today I'd like to draw attention to the fact that his church made $10.9M in revenue in FY2020 & employs 240 people. 1/
dnb.com/business-direc…
Contrast that to even the most successful exvangelical/post-evangelical content creator (I have >100 paid supporters, some have hundreds), and the disparity of available *financial* capital is much clearer. Yet they still consider #exvangelical an eschatological threat. 2/
There's plenty of things at work here, notably that online creators (who deserve to be compensated for their cultural capital) in this particular space - of commenting on religion/society in the US - are running headlong into trauma triggers around financial abuse or coercion. 3/
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We did it, everybody! #exvangelical
Eat your heart out, Hal Lindsey! Take that, James Hagee! We didn't need to move the embassy to Jerusalem, we just needed some scrappy people using hashtags! 😈
everybody take the day off, you deserve it
Read 5 tweets
White evangelicals like to think that ex/post-evangelicals are some new phenomenon. No. It’s just a new name for a decades-long dispersal. Your memories are short.

This book was published in 2002.

amazon.com/Children-Are-F…
16 YEARS LATER, one of its authors joined me on my podcast. We had gone to the same Christian college, at a different times. open.spotify.com/episode/3UwyL6…
I come from a long line of leavers. I’m not the only one that knows your secrets. #exvangelical

open.spotify.com/track/272pvCb8…
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Wow, @ConversationUS, this is a remarkably sloppy, irresponsible take. The author admits that many young evangelicals are leaving altogether to become #exvangelical, but then asserts, with no data, that youth-driven real change from the inside is possible and likely. It is not
First off, do you think the people that Russell Moore and Beth Moore (no relation) associate themselves with now, outside the Southern Baptist Convention, are going to just up and vote for Democrats? Hell, Russell still embraces "biblical patriarchy," and Beth won't condemn it
I recently wrote something that provides a more sober and realistic picture of the Russell Moore situation, @ConversationUS, if you care to take a look:

religiondispatches.org/less-for-moore…
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I remember the one my ex attended during our separation. Another man there called to ask if I would meet the returning men at the church “to motivate” his resolve to be a “more godly husband & father” & “encourage the continued change he experienced” while on the retreat.

1/10
It was the first time I felt free to tell the truth.

I told him I had been trying to encourage my then husband for over a decade. I did everything to motivate him be a more godly husband & father, encourage him to get help, support him financially, emotionally, and spiritually.
I had tried everything, read every Christian marriage book I could find, asked 4 help and advice from pastors and spiritual mentors 4yrs, attempted xtian counseling and yes, went on men’s/women’s/& marriage retreats with him too. But I recognize I could never motivate him.

3/10
Read 10 tweets
I’m quoted in @SamuelSokol’s excellent article in @haaretzcom contextualizing Christian Zionist Mike Evans’s antisemitic rant over Israeli election results:

haaretz.com/amp/us-news/.p…
“Blaming Jews for their own suffering, casting it as part of God’s Providential plan, is a trope that can already be found in Christian Zionism decades before the Holocaust, and it’s come up before among the contemporary Christian Zionists that Trump surrounded himself with”
“As someone who grew up evangelical and was taught to view Israel as a place for fulfillment of Christian prophecy, I’ve long been aware of Christian Zionism’s erasure of Jewish experience.

“Evans’s spectacular meltdown makes that erasure obvious.”

#exvangelical #EmptyThePews
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Everything about this corruption and drama was predictable under the conditions of the success of the “conservative resurgence” that was complete by the early 90s, and that pushed all Jimmy Carter style Baptists out of leadership roles in the SBC.

#Exvangelical #EmptyThePews
That Paige Patterson, a leader of the right-wing putsch forced into early retirement due to his callous attitude toward bartered women and sexual abuse, is a behind-the-scenes leader in the anti-ERLC faction makes perfect sense. As does the fact the SBC is losing the youth
I get the sense of filial duty Russell Moore feels. It wasn’t quite dead for those of us born 10 or so years after him, but many have shaken it off, because unconditional loyalty to an institution or faith means complicity in inevitably rampant abuse

cstroop.com/2018/06/14/esc…
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Frank Wright and @johnrabeFL of @DJKMinistries:

"Pull your children out of public schools and some private Christian schools, because they will be forced to shower with transgender people, and will lose their faith."

#exposechristianschools #exvangelical
rumble.com/vhqodr-a-time-…
I'm going to tear this conversation apart bit by bit, fallacy by fallacy. I speak from experience as someone who was homeschooled due to the exact rhetoric that Frank and John are using. They make bad arguments in bad faith that are directly out of the reconstructionist playbook.
Frank claims that in the 1940's, public education was secularized. This is largely true. Mandatory compulsory prayer in schools is a violation of the first amendment, as well as the separation of church and state. It's never coming back, because it was always unconstitutional.
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One of the insights many have drawn from the Trump years is the relationship between individually abusive people and authoritarian politicians. The desire to dominate and control through manipulation and violence can be socially scaled up to the level of a community or government
The same cycles that play out in individuals’ relationships and families also operate at larger social scales. And one of the things I wish more people understood about this is that fundamentalism is the embodiment of a cycle of abuse in a religious social context
In the United States, fundamentalist Christianity of the type one finds among conservative, mostly white evangelicals, trad Catholics, and most Mormons plays an influential role in our politics. In that regard, it is no coincidence that abuse pervades these groups’ institutions
Read 22 tweets
More #exvangelical thoughts: If compassion is the desire to alleviate suffering, self compassion is the desire to alleviate our own suffering. To do it we must be able to see reality for what it is & believe the target doesn’t deserve to suffer. Xianity didn’t give me these tools
Self compassion is key in handling failure & mistakes. Without it, we blame ourselves, lash out and blame others, or both. The harshest critics of themselves/others likely don’t have tools to handle failure and lack self compassion, which can lead to lack of compassion for others
As I said, Xianity didn’t give me these tools and I am not alone. It’s a systemic failure of Xianity to develop self compassion. If you believe in a god who punishes even minor infractions with internal damnation, you’re going to be pretty hard on yourself
Read 24 tweets
By the same token, you don't defang the "You only left the faith to have sex!" line by trying to prove you're "purer" than that.

You defang it by embracing healthy sexuality and holding hardline Christians accountable for their unhealthy sexual paranoia

flux.community/chrissy-stroop…
Never try to "prove" anything to Christian apologists, who do not think of you as equal and thus are not engaging in good-faith dialogue. Instead, reject the entire framing of their arguments, and throw the real-world consequences of their harmful views in their faces
This isn't going to win them over. After all, they're arguing in bad faith. Unless they have a sudden moment of clarity and conviction (perhaps as a result of long private conversations with people they're close to), nothing is going to win them over

cstroop.com/2017/06/07/whe…
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boy are y'all concerned with high-profile/big name exvangelicals. i started the #exvangelical tag in July 2016 long before that and tbh you should worry less about the reach of some celebrities & more about how decades of harmful theology & practices led to a mass exodus. Image
white evangelicals continue to miss the point. if a high-profile person that used to operate in the Christian media or evangelical sphere starts using the term #exvangelical, that's their choice. but it's not because of them that these critiques are gaining steam.
if they're already famous, guess what? they'll get attention for being vocal about changing their beliefs. and white evangelicals love to crucify their own (metaphor intended), b/c they love a damnation story just as much as a salvation story.
Read 8 tweets
A few years ago a Zionist cornered me in a grocery store to try and convince me that Palestine was an imaginary place/identity, because it was all just "Arab". If I didn't have my Jewish friends who were vocally anti-Zionist, I wouldn't have been prepared for that moment.
Her beliefs were, as you can expect, incredibly sinister. I'm not going into the grit of it because you probably follow me for art or whatever, but stick with me a sec.

If you're an outsider or at least undecided to these current events, keep reading.

Other followers, hi! Bye!
Back to this person, she said I was "smarter than I looked" because I knew that there were different types of Judaism, and that evangelical America is by far the greater supporter of Zionism.

It was such a gross, weird interaction that felt like a power play. Because it was.
Read 14 tweets
Alright alright alright. I have tried to limit how and when I speak in any kind of capacity regarding @TheWitnessBCC, a Black Christian non-profit of which I am the Vice President. My platform and opinions are my own and I try to compartmentalize...until I can’t. So here goes...
In March, @TheWitnessBCC launched our #LeaveLOUD content focus. Our founder, our President, and I shared our stories of leaving white Christian organizations and churches. We have published articles on our website and distributed other media as part of this content focus.
#LeaveLOUD is BY Black Christians, is FOR Black Christians, and is ABOUT who? BLACK CHRISTIANS.

We understand that a lot of our white siblings, particularly #exvangelicals, have resonated with this movement on some level. Not mad at it.

Lemme tell you what IS bothering me...
Read 25 tweets

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