Churchyard Piety

Feeling like a swim in the deep end of the pool today…

1. Churchyards don’t really exist anymore….but in the truest sense they do.

2. Piety is not a bad word – it means devoting one’s complete life to Christ.

3. Martin Luther – from Wiki (November 10, 1483–February 18, 1546) was a German monk, theologian, university professor, Father of Protestantism, and church reformer whose ideas influenced the Protestant Reformation and changed the course of Western civilization.

Not a bad looking resume?!

“Martin Luther depicted a piety of outward works that are devised by the religious opinions of men as Churchyard piety.  Today, Luther might well counsel the saints to beware of Church body or congregational Churchyard piety, a modern movement that seeks to inundate the church membership with a host of programs, activities, and organizational events that lack the context of sacrificial service. Piety as program involvement is pressed on the congregation as the real higher calling of the Christian who is really interested in serving Christ. In some churches, if you are not scheduling life and the use of your gifts according to all of the week’s calendar of events, something is seen as terribly wrong. You have not been assimilated into the regimen of real Christian living. Some congregations are even calling a special pastor in charge of assimilating the membership into all of these super-spiritual events and activities – the Pastor or Director of Assimilation! The thinly veiled message seems to be; “blessed are the involved and assimilated, for they shall inherit the Kingdom of God.” Activism in works that do not flow from one’s vocational call is present in every age as a temptation to leave the ordinary duties of Christian piety for the extraordinary. This is Churchyard piety.” – Steven Hein

And this is deep – and this hurts my brain – and this applies us all.  Not just to those who have “Assimilation” printed somewhere on their business card.


One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Jeff Stubbe on August 22, 2008 at 5:22 PM

    My head hurts too. I had to read it three times and I’m still not sure of it’s message. Is it speaking for or against church programs? I guess the true intent of the programs is more in question. I need an Asprin.

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