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Thu Mar 28, 2013, 10:35 AM

Progressive Christians, what do you tell your children Easter is about?

Do you tell them that Jesus literally rose from the dead?

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Reply Progressive Christians, what do you tell your children Easter is about? (Original post)
cleanhippie Mar 2013 OP
Stargazer09 Mar 2013 #1
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #7
d_r Mar 2013 #2
Trajan Mar 2013 #3
hrmjustin Mar 2013 #4
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #8
hrmjustin Mar 2013 #10
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #12
hrmjustin Mar 2013 #14
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #15
Marrah_G May 2013 #24
hrmjustin May 2013 #25
Lordquinton May 2013 #31
hrmjustin May 2013 #32
Lordquinton May 2013 #33
hrmjustin May 2013 #34
deutsey May 2013 #30
Marrah_G May 2013 #35
deutsey May 2013 #36
elfin Mar 2013 #5
woodsprite Mar 2013 #6
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #9
woodsprite Mar 2013 #18
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #20
grantcart Mar 2013 #11
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #13
jeepnstein Mar 2013 #16
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #17
hedgehog May 2013 #26
Phillip McCleod Mar 2013 #19
cleanhippie Mar 2013 #21
MsTopaz May 2013 #22
hrmjustin May 2013 #23
hedgehog May 2013 #27
hrmjustin May 2013 #28
pinto May 2013 #29
Burbankteacher Apr 2015 #37
cleanhippie Apr 2015 #38

Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 10:41 AM

1. Well, actually

My kids think it is just about the Easter bunny. I should probably tell them about the religious aspects, simply because their classmates would expect them to know.

I'm not terribly religious, but I think Jesus was a good person.

ETA: When I discuss the meaning behind Easter, I will not be going into great detail about the resurrection.

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Response to Stargazer09 (Reply #1)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 11:23 AM

7. While I agree, I'm curious as to just what you will tell them the meaning is.

Easter, as a Christian observance, IS all about the resurrection.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 10:48 AM

2. I tell them

that we celebrate that Jesus saved us all.

That we can all go to Heaven because God was so proud of Jesus for teaching people to be good and kind, and to share and help others and help the poor and the sick.

Mine are 9 and 5. I haven't talked about the crucifixion and stuff because I don't know how they'd handle it.

ETA oh, I've said that it is to celebrate when Jesus went to Heaven.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 10:52 AM

3. One word

 

C A N D Y ! ! !

just kidding .... kinda

As an atheist, I never pushed them one way or the other ... Easter was more of a family social event than a religious experience .... nice family dinners with the grandparents was what Easter was about for us ...

oh, and candy

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 10:58 AM

4. Well I have no children but my sister does and she asks me to teach the kids religion.

 

I teach them that Jesus rose from the dead and by his overcoming death we are set free. So yes I teach them he he rose.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #4)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 11:26 AM

8. You believe that to be literally true?

That the laws of physics and the natural laws of the universe were magically suspended and a man was literally resurrected from the dead?

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #8)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 11:46 AM

10. Yes!

 

Christians believe he died and rose again and by his death and resurrection we are set free.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #10)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 12:18 PM

12. Yes, I understand that.

Thanks for sharing.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #12)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 12:27 PM

14. But to be honest I tend to stress how Jesus would want us to treat one another.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #14)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 12:56 PM

15. Sounds like a difficult task, considering how many Christians in this country act

Which is quite contrary to what people believe Jesus taught. And then looking at the state of the lives of most others on the planet...

I guess teaching out children to try and be good to each other is all we can do. That's what I teach my child.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #10)

Wed May 15, 2013, 12:17 PM

24. I never quite understood that

I was raised Catholic and I could never understand how someone dying would release others from their sins. I mean, if God wanted to release the whole world from their sins, wouldn't he just do it? I mean, why go through the whole drama? And wouldn't it have been better to let Jesus live and continue to spread the word about tolerance and poverty and loving one another?

I hope you know that I mean no offense to you by writing this, I just really don't get it.

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Response to Marrah_G (Reply #24)

Wed May 15, 2013, 12:25 PM

25. You know my father brings this up to me all the time.

 

He says to me God should have just given us a boil on our Ass instead of having to execute his son. I always find that amusing. Can you imagine Jesus saying to his father Dad can't we talk about this.

I always wondered about why you would need an atonement by killing another myself. But I believe in the resurrection and what it does for humanity. I think it sets every human free no matter what you believe. I just want their to be life after death. It would kind of suck if there is none.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #25)

Fri May 17, 2013, 07:14 PM

31. "why you would need an atonement by killing another myself"

Very appropriate, Jesus was another 'myself' of God

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Response to Lordquinton (Reply #31)

Fri May 17, 2013, 11:13 PM

32. We believe what we believe.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #32)

Fri May 17, 2013, 11:42 PM

33. I meant it in an interesting way that you phrased it

Perhaps unintentional, perhaps not. It was very clever, actually. No sarcasm, that was cool.

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Response to Lordquinton (Reply #33)

Fri May 17, 2013, 11:44 PM

34. Oh thank you! It just poured out as I typed. I like the person I responded to so I felt at

 

ease responding.

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Response to Marrah_G (Reply #24)

Fri May 17, 2013, 04:01 PM

30. I feel the same way

When I took a New Testament course led by a Jesuit theologian, I started looking at the crucifixion/resurrection differently.

He basically emphasized that the crucifixion was not a blood sacrifice to make everything ok between God and humanity. He said that historical Jesus taught the in-breaking of the new reality of the "kingdom of God" in his time and place. This new reality welcomed everyone as God's children, not just the rich, powerful, and religiously correct, but especially the poor, marginalized, and outcaste. At the heart of this new reality was new community with a radical trust in God, or what Jesus called "abba" "daddy."

According to the theologian, this was possibly what the historical Jesus believed was his role: to proclaim that the kingdom is at hand and to help bring it into its fullest expression through how he lived his life; his role wasn't to walk around preaching for a few years before going off to shed his magical blood and save the world from sin.

This inclusive new reality that he embodied and lived out, of course, threatened the Powers That Be at the time (the repressive religious/political/economic/social structures that benefited from keeping people poor, marginalized, and outcaste). Especially when Jesus goes into Jerusalem for Passover with a sizable crowd following him and reclaims the temple for this new reality.

He's eventually executed in such a way that struck at the very heart of his claim that the kingdom is at hand and that we should embrace a radical trust in God. As he died on the cross, Jesus himself was probably wondering in anguish about the validity of what he had preached and lived out ("My God! My God! Why have you forsaken me?".

But even in his deepest despair and doubt, Jesus choose to remain steadfast in his faith and belief that the kingdom was at hand and even while he may die, he believed God was ultimately in control and would transform the catastrophe of his crucifixion into something powerfully transformative itself.

His resurrection was the result of that. Whether he was actually raised from the dead or not, his disciples began to understand and experience the new reality he preached in a new and deeper way after his death, in a way that did indeed radically transform them.

They did apparently believe he was going to return soon, which explains why the Gospels weren't written until decades later. Initially, the early followers went around proclaiming that the new kingdom reality was a hand and that the parousia (return of Jesus as the complete fulfillment of that reality) would be soon. As time went on and that didn't happen, however, the new reality eventually solidified into a new religion.

I think I got that right (it was back in the '90s when I took this class, so it may not be comprehensive). All of this, of course, is much more difficult to sum up than parroting a bumpersticker slogan like "Jesus died for your sins."

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Response to deutsey (Reply #30)

Sun May 19, 2013, 12:47 PM

35. that was a really great reply

Very interesting, thank you for that!

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Response to Marrah_G (Reply #35)

Sun May 19, 2013, 08:58 PM

36. Thank you

I was hoping I was making sense.

This Christological interpretation brought me back to Christianity for a while before it eventually also led me to leave the mainline denomination I used to belong to because it was beginning to lean toward a more orthodox/conservative theology.

However, because of this Christology I still have positive feelings toward Christianity...just not a lot of what passes as Christianity today.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 11:07 AM

5. It's about Spring and renewal of life on Earth

And oh yes, a magic bunny.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 11:12 AM

6. When we talk about it, we talk about it as Easter being a rememberance of the time

of the Last Supper, Jesus death and of 3 days later, when he manifested in the spirit form.

Tonight we'll go to Maundy Thursday service (mainly because were in choir). We'll be hearing the story of the last supper and share an eccumenical soup/sharing dinner with our church friends. Dinner consists of vegetable or chicken soup, crackers, grapes, and wedges of cheese. It's not a tennebrae service, just dinner w/ friends and a 15-min. or so story telling.

Though our church participates in a community Good Friday service, we don't attend.

On Sunday, son, hubby and myself play in the handbell group and choir in church in the morning and head to family dinner in the afternoon. We still do an Easter 'gifty' thing for the kids. My daughter will get a blouse she's been wanting. My son will get a small Lego set and a flashlight that he's wanted. Each will get a book they want (Manga for daughter, Wereworld for son). Each package will be topped off with their 'candy' of choice (Several packs of Big Train Chai tee for daughter and Reese's PB eggs for son).

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Response to woodsprite (Reply #6)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 11:28 AM

9. Manifested in spirit form?



That's not how the story goes....

Sounds like you have a wonderful day planned. Enjoy! And thanks for sharing.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #9)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 04:49 PM

18. Yeah, I know, but I when he was little I was afraid he would think that

grandmom and grandad were just gonna get up out of their caskets after 3 days and everything would go back to normal. He's always been a very literal kid. I'll let him put any questions he has to our minister during confirmation class That should be a fun conversation. She's an awesome lady but I'm not sure if she's ready for him or not

There has never been and never will be any vengeful, end-times, "blood running as deep as a horse's bridle" talk in our house. I have no qualms about walking out of a church that preaches solely that way. That's what I grew up with and it resulted in me having panic attacks and being prescribed 'nerve meds' from the time I was 7yo till I was 11yo. I went to church with our neighbors (probably so Mom and Dad could have some alone time). It didn't help that when my parents asked me what was wrong and I told them, they said I was making it up and made me go anyway. At 17yo I made the decision to be baptized in the Presbyterian church and have mostly attended there since then.

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Response to woodsprite (Reply #18)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 05:39 PM

20. I feel ya.

My daughter, almost 4, is also very literal, so I know what you mean.

Sounds like you have a good one on your hands. I hope it works out how you expect.

Again, thanks for sharing.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 12:05 PM

11. No longer a 'Christian' but I tell them that it is about the Resurrection of the Body of the Christ.


The Body of the Christ is the Church.


That when the Church was completely demoralized they found the tomb empty (Mark) but later by focusing on the meaning of the words and mission of the Rabbi Jesus they found new meaning in the community of believers.

This rebirth of the community was cannonized in Matthew and Luke and mythologized in John.

It was personified in the story of a brilliant tent maker who became a conspirator in religious persecution and an acoomplice to murder. When the guilt became too great for him he suffered from hysterical blindness and only found relief when members of that body accepted him with grace and his life was reborn.

The greatest witness to the life of Jesus, his death and the Ressurection of his message of Grace was a man who never saw him and did his best to kill that message. If that doesn't prove that Ressurection isn't true then I don't know what does.

In proving that the principle of Ressurection is true (hasn't the Union of South Africa been reborn from the dead?) I think that the Church slowly mythologized it into a particular truth rather than a general truth because it found that it was easier to propogate the message with stark symbols and rituals (the Cross and the Mass).

So you can see why I can't consider myself a Christian but also why we never talked about the Easter bunny.


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Response to grantcart (Reply #11)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 12:20 PM

13. That's an interesting way to look at it.

Thanks for sharing.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 01:22 PM

16. Yes.

If he didn't, then Christianity is pointless.

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Response to jeepnstein (Reply #16)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 01:41 PM

17. I agree.

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Response to jeepnstein (Reply #16)

Wed May 15, 2013, 12:30 PM

26. This is a very, very old discussion:From First Corinthians:

But if Christ is preached as raised from the dead, how can some among you say there is no resurrection of the dead? If there is no resurrection of the dead, then neither has Christ been raised.And if Christ has not been raised, then empty [too] is our preaching; empty, too, your faith. Then we are also false witnesses to God, because we testified against God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise if in fact the dead are not raised.For if the dead are not raised, neither has Christ been raised, and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is vain; you are still in your sins. Then those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are the most pitiable people of all.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 05:16 PM

19. i identified as agnostic when they were little..

 

..almost 16 and 18 now and i no longer identify with that approach to interactions with religious ideas. back then i still told them about ishtar/isis/astarte and the widespread pantheistic/animistic goddess worship of our distant ancestors. i was initiated into a wiccan coven at the tender age of 19.. lasted all of a year and my approach obviously changed in time, but i always figured the truth, even if they didn't fully understand it, was the best explanation.

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Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #19)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 05:42 PM

21. That's pretty much the approach I plan to take when my daughter starts asking about religion.

We will go over the myriad beliefs and religions humans have had over the years to explain the things we didn't understand or know about and how those beliefs and religions changed a our knowledge about the world increased.

It will be education, not indoctrination.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Tue May 14, 2013, 10:49 AM

22. Emphasis on "Progressive"

Since we are "Progressive" Christians, I tell them that some other Christians believe in the literal story and that we respect their beliefs so we don't argue with them about it when they didn't ask for our opinions.

Then I tell them that many other Christians don't believe or have doubts about a literal resurrection and for them, "resurrection" means new beginnings. I emphasize that death doesn't mean the story is over and that the Body of Christ (of which we are part) are still responsible for helping to bring about the Kingdom of God.

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Response to MsTopaz (Reply #22)

Tue May 14, 2013, 10:53 AM

23. Welcome to Du and Welcome to the religion group.

 

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Wed May 15, 2013, 12:44 PM

27. If one believes that Jesus was both God and Man, why balk at teachings such as the Virgin Birth

or literal Resurrection? We toss the word "god" around so often, we never stop to consider what we are referring to. Let us step back and look at our natural world one moment - Where does space end? Does it end? Is there something outside space? Before the Big Bang, did space exist?

Now - time began for a reason. We are used to thinking of God the Father as this:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/7c/Cima_da_Conegliano,_God_the_Father.jpg/300px-Cima_da_Conegliano,_God_the_Father.jpg

Maybe we should try thinking of something more like this:



Now, if something like that exists before Time, and that something loves us......

Personally, this is my image of God the Father:

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Response to hedgehog (Reply #27)

Wed May 15, 2013, 01:20 PM

28. I believe in the virgin birth.

 

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Wed May 15, 2013, 02:51 PM

29. Allegory about renewal, I guess. And the historical connection with seasonal change.



(disclaimer) I don't have kids so mine isn't a first hand pov.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Sat Apr 4, 2015, 11:50 PM

37. I tell them the story, emphasizing the message that God is with us, even when things seem hopeless.

As a Sunday School teacher, I believe that the strength of the story is not dependent on a literal interpretation. For example, we tell children the story of the "Boy Who Cried Wolf", never debating on whether or not there really was a Boy Who Cried "Wolf." The truth is in the meaning.

So, what do I teach children at my church? For small children, I teach them this: Even when things seem sad or hopeless, God is with us.

For children a little older, I teach them that some powerful people were scared of the teachings of Jesus. Back then, many people were killed because they opposed those in power. (What were some of these teachings? Jesus taught that the religious system was corrupt. He upset the patriarchal system: everyone was to be brothers and sisters- no one's worth was based on how wealthy they were, or how powerful their family was. The king/ rulers of the day were not the ultimate authority, but spiritual teachings of compassion and justice were to be followed.) These unjust people thought they had won by killing Jesus. But, Jesus rose from the dead. The followers of Jesus continued to tell people the message that Jesus taught them, and we know these teaching today because those unjust people did not win.

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Response to Burbankteacher (Reply #37)

Sun Apr 5, 2015, 10:50 AM

38. It's an Easter miracle! You've ressurrected a dead thread!




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