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Re: TR's Religion

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  • moropus99
    From the website of Christ Church (Episcopal) in Cambridge http://www.cccambridge.org/ Generations of Harvard students, from Richard Henry Dana (Two Years
    Message 1 of 5 , Feb 22, 2002
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      From the website of Christ Church (Episcopal) in Cambridge
      http://www.cccambridge.org/

      "Generations of Harvard students, from Richard Henry Dana (Two Years
      Before the Mast) to Teddy Roosevelt (who was asked not to continue as
      a Sunday School teacher because he would not become an Episcopalian)
      have made Christ Church their parish home during their studies..."





      --- In tr-m@y..., RoginaJ@c... wrote:
      > I don't know if this helps the discussion as it is not based on
      scholarly
      > study but personal and anecdotal experience but here goes.
      >
      > I find faith to be a personal position and a personal covenant
      between me and
      > God. I'm less concerned with the "denomination" of the building or
      the
      > administrative hierarchy. Indeed my current church is recovering
      from a huge
      > fight between the upper hierarchy and the church itself. That is
      the secular
      > side of humanity. It is reality of human beings, it is separate
      from the
      > beliefs of the members. The pew in which I do or do not place
      myself on
      > Sunday is NOT what determines my religious beliefs. I like the
      current
      > message and tone, I like the new priest, I like the choir, the
      people and the
      > activities, I have friends there and the church is extremely
      convenient so
      > I'm more likely to get there. That is my reality. It does not
      necessarily
      > reflect how I pray or worship.
      >
      > Regarding TR, I believe the Unitarian Church in question is the
      First Parish
      > Church in Cambridge. First Parish Church is a large Unitarian
      Universalist
      > church immediately across the street from Harvard University in
      Harvard
      > Square. Other than the campus chapel, it would probably have been
      the most
      > proximate (or one of the most) church to the campus. I seem to
      recall he at
      > one point lived on Kirkland Street. Depending on the block, he
      would have
      > been right in back of Harvard Yard and a short walk to First
      Parish.
      Many
      > from Harvard do go to that church.
      >
      > Also many Unitarians DO believe in Jesus, although others identify
      with a
      > variety of philosophies. In one Unitarian church I have personally
      attended
      > the very popular long time minister would end prayers by saying "in
      the
      > spirit of Jesus" as opposed to "in the name of Jesus". A Unitarian
      relative
      > complained that their new minister ended prayers in the "name of
      the
      Father,
      > Son and Holy Ghost" which she found discomforting and "a bit too
      Papist" for
      > her taste. Unitarian congregations seem to vary quite a bit. Some
      seem
      > quite put out by the mention of Jesus, others embrace it. My
      experience is
      > that although the TRINITY is paramount in the Catholic religion,
      and
      quite
      > prominent in Episcopalianism it is less mentioned of many other
      Protestant
      > religions. Their focus is God and Jesus. To bring this full
      circle,
      many
      > Protestants from a variety of churches seem to find themselves in a
      Unitarian
      > church at one point or another. The roots of the parishioners may
      account
      > for some of the variations in Unitarian congregations.
      >
      > Many people, particularly within the Protestant groups, move around
      based on
      > geography, caliber of ministry, congeniality of the congregation,
      affiliation
      > with a choir or activity of a particular church. This may be hard
      to
      > understand as some sects and religions are very strict about
      members
      going
      > outside their particular church. But many simply see the focus as
      a
      belief
      > in God and Jesus and the rest largely a matter of format and
      tradition. The
      > ritual is not the religion, it is the secular manifestation of
      worship.
      > Indeed in small town areas there may be only one Protestant church
      of any
      > type. So someone raised Congregationalist may find themselves at
      the local
      > Baptist or Presbyterian or Methodist church if they move to a new
      community.
      > I've visited a number of churches of different denominations and
      found much
      > of the program to be very similar especially across much of the
      spectrum of
      > Protestant faiths. If the local options were Catholic or Unitarian
      someone
      > might feel more at home in the Unitarian church as they might be
      unfamiliar
      > or uncomfortable with some of the Catholic rituals and aspects of
      worship,
      > but that would probably depend entirely on the local congregations.
      >
      > Back to TR. If the minister at the local Unitarian church was
      reputed to
      > provide an inspiring message and the congregation congenial, I can
      easily see
      > that TR would have attended. I don't see that it would have been
      > incompatible with either his Dutch Reformed upbringing or his later
      > attendance at the Episcopal Church.
      >
      > Rogina
      >
      > Rogina
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