Two Hour Church

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AmyJ
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by AmyJ » 12 Oct 2018, 05:21

I was thinking about it the other day actually.

As a family, we don't invite people over to our house because we don't. 3/4 of us are introverts to various degrees, with a really small, really humble house. Bottom line - We don't put resources (executive functioning and otherwise) into socializing with people at our house.
We don't stay for linger longers because of 1 car, social anxiety - and my husband can't eat most of what is presented and feels awkward about it.
I do most of my connecting or "socializing" through email, Facebook, and texting these days. My husband got more connected to the branch (also by email and texting) because of his calling as executive secretary - otherwise he would fade into the woodwork in his non-conforming ways.

So while I am glad for the 2 hour church on behalf of my toddler and 8.75 year old, there is also some mourning and thinking about how to set up an environment of "trading up" spiritually and socially.

nibbler
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by nibbler » 12 Oct 2018, 06:02

mom3 wrote:
11 Oct 2018, 17:03
We don't socialize on Sunday. We move from meeting to meeting, sit in repeat - regurgitated lessons, and have more stressful lives.
This is what I was going to say. Granted, you get the level of socializing that you put in but in my experience there's not much socializing going on during our meetings, our meetings are much too formal for that. If you want to socialize you'll have to do it in the hallways.

So does this produce more or less social time for people that need social time? Some that are already conditioned to 3 hour church may feel like they have more time to socialize after the block. Right now I see most people in a rush to get home because at 3 hours they've had more than their fill. Who knows, those types may hang around for a few minutes now.

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Heber13
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by Heber13 » 12 Oct 2018, 06:12

I agree with nibbler and mom3. The length of church was especially difficult because of the monotony and poor use of time. They might have tried changes to manuals and councils 3rd hour and a few things but they weren't enough. They needed more radical change for better content since church was so boring, or this reduction, which is the easier of the 2.
AmyJ wrote:
12 Oct 2018, 05:21
As a family, we don't invite people over to our house because we don't. 3/4 of us are introverts to various degrees, with a really small, really humble house. Bottom line - We don't put resources (executive functioning and otherwise) into socializing with people at our house.
I agree with Amy too. I would say there was a season in my life when we did socialize and had the ward BBQs in our back yard and I put effort into having people over for dinner so we could get to know them. But that isn't my season now. I simply don't put resources into socializing anymore.

Some do. Some don't. It should be left up to others as optional at church, not make everyone stay longer because a few have specific needs that may not have been met anyway under the prior format.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

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DarkJedi
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by DarkJedi » 12 Oct 2018, 07:37

I socialized a lot at church. That's what second hour was for. Half our ward is in the chapel, foyers, or hallways (SS is in the RS room).

Our ward has a monthly "linger longer." I'm usually not up for staying for that because, as I always said (somewhat tongue-in-cheek) "I'm done lingering, three hours is plenty of lingering for me." I might be more inclined to stay now, depending on the food and my mood.

So, I agree, the Sunday meeting schedule is utilitarian and perfunctory. It's not meant for socializing. The good news for me is that I actually don't care much for socializing and only did the socializing I have done because what else was I supposed to do second hour? I just gave this a good amount of thought and checked my calendar - I have not been to a ward activity this year. I think the only one left is the Christmas party, which I may or may not go to. I didn't go last year because it was a brunch on a Saturday morning (the older than dirt RSP planned it. I think she was Eliza Snow's BFF back in the day :P ).
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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nibbler
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by nibbler » 12 Oct 2018, 08:43

DarkJedi wrote:
12 Oct 2018, 07:37
I just gave this a good amount of thought and checked my calendar - I have not been to a ward activity this year.
I just checked my calendar. We haven't had a ward activity this year. :P

We save it all for Halloween and Christmas.

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DarkJedi
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by DarkJedi » 12 Oct 2018, 09:15

nibbler wrote:
12 Oct 2018, 08:43
DarkJedi wrote:
12 Oct 2018, 07:37
I just gave this a good amount of thought and checked my calendar - I have not been to a ward activity this year.
I just checked my calendar. We haven't had a ward activity this year. :P

We save it all for Halloween and Christmas.
We have had some, including the Memorial Day picnic and a Pinewood Derby (for adults). I don't actually think we're having a Halloween thing this year now that you mention it. We usually do a trunk-or-treat but I haven't heard anything about it (and I wouldn't go anyway). And we have our almost monthly linger longer.

That said, I think it's kind of sad your ward has not had anything. I do think that for many people socialization is not only important but is the church for them.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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mom3
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by mom3 » 12 Oct 2018, 10:04

I am an extrovert. I enjoyed 2nd hour socializing very much. I will miss the excuse of it. I have worked hard to see positives during lessons. I can't blame the teachers, too much. How many ways can you slice someone's talk and re-serve it as new and fresh? or spend the 30th year in a row making the Scriptures (any book) more insightful.

I get many of the reasons why we moved to the block program, and now the reduced version, but we killed something vital.
I do think that for many people socialization is not only important but is the church for them.
Sadly, we criminalize these people with glib statements like, "social testimonies". Like it's a crime.

I flew home from vacation on Monday. I watched Hidden Figures on the flight home. One scene is a post church picnic. I grew nostalgic for days when I was a girl and our ward had that. Or when friends left morning session with each other and sat through Sacrament together in the evening. Church wasn't just a meeting then. It was a lifestyle.

My kids are all grown. Most of our closest friends have moved or been moved by ward re-alignments, so the natural hang outs are gone. Once it's split, it doesn't work. Yes every once in a while, but the full thing. No. So now we punt. We travel to family. We find other things. It makes me sad.

Two hours isn't going to change the boredom. The tedium will still exist. Our manuals won't change. I could study at home and be happy forever. It's becoming a tempting thought. If I didn't love my calling I could make it work in a heart beat.
"I stayed because it was God and Jesus Christ that I wanted to follow and be like, not individual human beings." Chieko Okazaki Dialogue interview

"I am coming to envision a new persona for the Church as humble followers of Jesus Christ....Joseph and his early followers came forth with lots of triumphalist rhetoric, but I think we need a new voice, one of humility, friendship and service. We should teach people to believe in God because it will soften their hearts and make them more willing to serve." - Richard Bushman

nibbler
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by nibbler » 12 Oct 2018, 11:24

mom3 wrote:
12 Oct 2018, 10:04
I get many of the reasons why we moved to the block program, and now the reduced version, but we killed something vital.
I think "gospel purpose" crept in and took over. People forgot that community building and socializing even without any other ulterior motive at all serves a gospel purpose. Just because we don't hold the meeting specifically to invite people to meet some goal or other...

I'm kind of off subject but:
  • The cliché about the half dozen to a dozen families that do everything in a ward. I remember when I was one of them. Church was often 7 hours on a Sunday. Who has the energy to plan and hold additional activities when church felt like another day of work? Maybe 1/3rd less of a block will translate to 1/3rd less ancillary meetings, 4 and 2/3rd hours on a Sunday for those people that were routinely doing 7.
  • Stuff gets more and more expensive, wages stay the same. Pay tithing on gross and there's little discretionary income. Money for events all but has to come out of member's pockets. Members that have already tithed. The ward budgets are anemic.
  • Thinking more global, people in general have changed. We don't get our social interactions the same way we did 100 years ago. I might go to a dance in 1843... because what else is there to do? Now? We've got too many things competing for our time... including church.
  • Stated earlier. I've known some leaders, local and otherwise, that felt the need to stamp out social aspects of the church. You don't come to church to socialize, you come to church to save and be saved! But we missed that little detail where we save and are saved via our social interactions. But we still act as though our social interactions are one more thing we should be expected to sacrifice at the altar to show our devotion. Being social isn't efficient in helping us meet our goals of... being a boring business?

AmyJ
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by AmyJ » 12 Oct 2018, 11:28

nibbler wrote:
12 Oct 2018, 08:43
DarkJedi wrote:
12 Oct 2018, 07:37
I just gave this a good amount of thought and checked my calendar - I have not been to a ward activity this year.
I just checked my calendar. We haven't had a ward activity this year. :P

We save it all for Halloween and Christmas.
I think we did something for Memorial Day and I took the girls.
I went to the 4th of July breakfast with my 2 girls.
We will probably do the Halloween thing with the branch - the girls and I.
Our attendance at the Christmas Party will largely depend on when they schedule it. Last year they did it mid-week, so I did not even try to take the girls.

Roy
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Re: Two Hour Church

Post by Roy » 12 Oct 2018, 15:11

nibbler wrote:
12 Oct 2018, 11:24
Stated earlier. I've known some leaders, local and otherwise, that felt the need to stamp out social aspects of the church. You don't come to church to socialize, you come to church to save and be saved! But we missed that little detail where we save and are saved via our social interactions. But we still act as though our social interactions are one more thing we should be expected to sacrifice at the altar to show our devotion.
I remember as a YSA having a conversation with someone studying to become a Christian Pastor. They where shocked and more than a little dismayed that we LDS had "Singles Wards". The idea that we would be so brazen in co-purposing a sacred worship service with a dating meat market stuck her as somewhat sacrilegious.
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"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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