East of Eden
Where are the men?
I've asked before why do you go to church. Another big question, even more pressing is why so many men don't. Over at Black and Married with Kids, Frederick Goodall answers the question, seven times over. Here's a few:
1. THEIR FATHERS DIDN’T ATTEND CHURCH
“Many men give their sons the impression that the church is not a place for real men by stereotyping Christian men as passive, effeminate, and henpecked – qualities no man desires,” says Frederick Davis, assistant pastor of the Almeda Church of Christ in Houston, TX. “As a result of their macho posturing, these men are inadvertently teaching their sons that church is only for women and wimps, and propagating new generations of unchurched men.”
A man’s lackadaisical attitude towards church attendance can influence his children’s perceptions of religion. This behavior is especially destructive if the man has a son. It is difficult for a mother to convince her son that attending church is important if her husband invalidates her arguments by sleeping late on Sundays.
“I would always wonder why my mom made me go to church when my father didn’t,” says Andre Ligon, a 40 year-old lawyer. “I didn’t think church was important because he never went.”
2. THEY HAVE TO WORK
As companies downsize and lay-offs lurk around every corner, men feel compelled to work as much as they can to provide some measure of security for their families. Neglecting their own spiritual growth is a small sacrifice for men who desire to keep their families out of dire straits.
George O’Neil, Sr., 63, retired, concurs. “When I got married and had children, I had to stop going to church as much as I used to because I had to get a steady job. I worked whenever I could get something which often meant on Sundays,” O’Neil said. “Something had to give -unfortunately, it was church.”
3. TOO MANY COLLECTIONS
With rising unemployment, higher taxes, and other financial woes, the last thing any man wants to see when he goes to church is a pastor with his hand out asking for more than his fair share of his income.
“I couldn’t take it anymore,” says Paul Johnson, a 52 year-old mailroom supervisor. “Before I could put my wallet away from the first offering, a battalion of collection plates would bombard me again. At one point, I thought I’d have to start paying admission.
I can't pretend I haven't *always* seen the male-female ration imbalance.In every single church I've ever belonged (and probably even visited, too), there's been FAR more women then men. When I was single, I assumed I'd never meet a Christian dude for me in church. And I didn't. I met K at work.
What do you think about the gender imbalance? Is it a problem? Do you think the given reasons stand, or are just sad excuses?