Wednesday, March 22, 2006

My Conversion Story

If you've got the time, my conversion story from Protestant Evangelicalism to Orthodoxy is finally in electronic form here -- or you can click on the sidebar in the future.

Read it, then comment there (or in this post, wherever you like) if you wanna. It'll be interesting to see if it generates any conversation...

4 comments:

Mimi said...

What an interesting journey, Reader David Bryan. Thank you for sharing it.

Rhology said...

A well-written story of how Ft Worth came w/in a hairsbreadth of acquiring a Reeder Peeder. But the Lord was merciful.

Obviously, I disagree w/ a lot, but you know that already. Thanks for writing it out in detail, since an oral story sometimes is lacking. ;-)

Cultivating the soul and pulling my pants up in Animeland,
ALAN

David Bryan said...

Well, when one intends to write a detailed, exhastive account of something, then, yes, the result is usually better than, say, a little written here, a litte there in individual letters to Chur- I mean, emails to friends, huh bro? ;-)

Hey, and, aside from the obvious theological issues you'd have with my conclusions, is there anything else with which you'd take issue? I.e., was your experience in the Bible Study in High School different, etc?

Thanks for reading, bro.

Rhology said...

You said:
--Well, when one intends to write a detailed, exhastive account of something, then, yes, the result is usually better than, say, a little written here, a litte there in individual letters to Chur- I mean, emails to friends, huh bro? ;-)

Hey, and, aside from the obvious theological issues you'd have with my conclusions, is there anything else with which you'd take issue? I.e., was your experience in the Bible Study in High School different, etc?

Thanks for reading, bro.

Along those lines, you wrote in this post:
--Added to this diversity of opinion was the even greater diversity seen in my high school’s pan-denominational Bible Study, where everyone from Catholics to Baptists to Presbyterians to Methodists to Charismatics, as well as many others, came together to discuss the faith. The meetings themselves were orderly enough, with a leadership delivering sermons and a brief time of worship choruses. But the conversations I got involved with outside the meetings got me wondering about even more issues:

* Baptism—whether it “saved” you or was just a symbol;
* whether or not infants should be baptized;
* communion—whether it was just a symbol or something more significant;
* faith and works—whether St. Paul and St. James were opposed to each other, or talking about different things, or talking about the same thing from different angles, as well as what qualified as “faith” and what qualified as “works”;
* church government—whether it was congregational or episcopal or presbyterian or something else entirely...

>>You ask about my experience in Hornets in Christ (yes, that spells HIC, for everyone else reading). I remember it differently, and I can think of several reasons why.
-You were in HIC longer, from freshman year to at least junior year (I forget if it survived to your senior year, but I think it did). HIC started up in the format you knew during my junior year.
-You had way more friends in HS than I ever did, and from what you've told me, from a wider theological spectrum. As an example, I had never heard of the 5 Points of Calvinism until like the September of my freshman year at college. Yes, I was shocked to hear that people actually believed them.
-The discussions/mild controversies that I DID have w/ fellow believers were mostly over charismatic questions. I don't recall ever discussing the examples you have given until I was in college.
-I have always had a more apologetic slant than theological, so alot of my time talking to people and reading was directed towards how I could refute unbelievers in the very frequent controversies we would have, both in and out of class. Hooray for Theory of Knowledge class! :-\

One more anecdote about HIC. While I was studying in France my 4th year of college before I became a super-senior, my little bro Craig was attending HIC like a good Methodist boy should. Let's see...he would have been a sophomore in HS at this time, I should think. Anywho, during one of the admittedly not-all-that-well-organised more or less testimony times, or maybe even during an 'official' teaching time, a HIC member made the claim that you had to speak in tongues to be saved. I had discussed THIS before but had dismissed as completely w/o merit in the Bible. And I was right. And I think there were some attempted refutations during the hour itself, but it apparently made a big impression on my brother. Over the phone and email, I explained the whole thing but I think that definitely contributed to his lack of enthusiasm in all things seriously spiritual.
That org definitely needed better leadership, ie, an elder or 3.
So there you go. My encounters w/ your stated spectrum of questions about "essentials vs. non-essentials" would have to wait until college for me.

Peace,
ALAN