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Date Posted: 00:50:35 09/25/02 Wed
Subject: Re: What does UBF have against the local church?
In reply to:
's message, "What does UBF have against the local church?" on 00:42:28 09/25/02 Wed
Dear Sarah, I don't understand this attitude, either.
By the way, I'm from Germany and the structure of churches is completely different here than in the US. Basically, we only have two churches, catholic and protestant ("evangelische Landeskirche"). There exist many more small local churches, too, independend from the two big main churches, called "free" churches. But most people aren't even aware of the existence of those churches. Through being baptised as a child, most Germans automatically became members of one of these two big churches, financed by taxes, which are collected together with the public income tax.
In this way I was also a member of the protestant church. There was a time, when I went to church nearly every Sunday, I attended the obligatory catechumen and confirmee classes. But I was very disappointed, because I couldn't understand the gospel and I didn't get answers ot my basic questions about God. Who is he? We even had to learn about the colours of the "antependium" (the cloth in front of the pulpit), but I could never find the meaning of this all. So I was disappointed of the church and a God who made no sense to me and lived my own life without God for years until finally I met Jesus through reading the bible in UBF (later, I also met other things here like "absolute obedience" to humans, and the grace of Jesus faded, but that's another story).
It is not false to say that the main protestant church in Germany is dead. They rarely teach the gospel, they are more on tradition and humanistic thoughts. Anyway, although they have many members, most of them don't even go to the sunday services. Only a few old grannys go. Of course, there are exceptions: Ambitious, faithful pastors and more vivid congregations. But they are really exceptions.
But this status quo should not hinder us to keep in touch, dialogue and cooperation with the main church. We cannot complain that the church is dead but do nothing to revive it. Since the "comissary for cults" of the protestant church called UBF a destructive cult, the main church became a sort of "enemy" of UBF. Even so, I'm still member of the protestant church and pay the church tax.
Since the "main" church is dead for the most part, the many small local churches are vivid all the more. But even with those churches UBF does not cooperate. And that makes me really sad. If we really have the vision of our nation as a shepherd nation, we have to have the spirit of crossing the boundaries, of a community of all churches in our nation.
I think the main reasons for not cooperating with the other churches is spiritual pride, elitism, and the fear, that destructive and abusive elements in UBF are revealed if there is any contact to churches outside. In Germany there, a so-called "evangelical allicance" exists between the various "free" evangelical churches. On a sheet of paper, UBF is (or at least was) a member of this alliance. But as far as I know, real cooperation never took place and even membership was quit, because UBF was accused by other members of the alliance. Unfortunately, this is not an issue in UBF. Our leaders don't speak about other churches... UBF is all they see. Christianity is UBF and vice versa and the body of Christ is UBF. UBF officially commits to the Apostles Creed, which says "I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints" (the word "catholic" here refers not to the Roman Catholic Church, but to the universal church of the Lord Jesus Christ), but essentially UBF's credo is "I believe in our methods more than in the Holy Spirit, I believe in UBF and the leadership of Samuel Lee." That's one of our basic problems.
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