Implicit Religion – Rotting from the Inside

I first want to apologize for not writing last week.  Life got a hold of me and I ended up being bogged down to much in it to share with my readers.  Today life is getting back to normal.  I am back in the office, the children will be going back to their Moms tonight, and probably most important is that my mother-in-law has returned to North Texas.  Not only did my writing suffer so did my reading for my dissertation.  I had hoped life wouldn’t get in the way but unfortunately it did.  I was reading the following article today

Ap Siôn, T., & Windsor, C. (2012). Freemasonry Through the Eyes of Anglican Clergy: Insights from Implicit Religion? Implicit Religion, 15(3), 339-355.

The term implicit religion came up and not being real sure what it was meaning by implicit religion I decided to go ahead and do some research.  Apparently this term is used synonymously with civil religion.  It is social groups that align themselves with religious ideas and thoughts that compliment or enhance what organized religion teaches.  In my dissertation the question I am trying to determine is where the Order of Eastern Star is in their process of organizational change.  I argue that they are caught in a grief cycle which is essential to the process of organizational change.  The relationship to bringing in millennials and the failure of the organization to attract them with their old ritual and traditions has left them without a support structure for future generations.  I use the Church to show how organizationally the civic group and church are structured the same way with same ideas and concepts.  However, I can firmly say that it is not just a problem with the traditions and rituals of the organizations of Freemasonry.  It’s a rotting from the inside.

 “Even though our ceremonies are based on heroines from the Bible, the Order of the Eastern Star is clearly not a religion. It does not pretend to take the place of a religion, or serve as a substitute for the religious beliefs of its members. Our members come from all denominations” from http://bangormasonic.org/masonic-groups/eastern-star/

The concern is that that brothers and sisters in the masonic orders are not going to church any longer.  The members have become Christians in name only.  This lack of conviction to ones beliefs and ideals is a turn off to millennials. If individuals stop going to church and some point they will quit doing civic organizations too.  Knights of Columbus and Lions and Elks lodges have suffered many of the same ills as those in Freemasonry.

At least I have one stabilizing ritual in my life.  I listen to morning and evening prayer every day.  Something calming and relaxing about it.  Helps me focus on what I need to do for the day.  Monday through Thursday I try to listen to 4 or 5 hours of someone reading me the bible online.  Currently right now I am on Numbers Chapter 7.  I will be honest I was happy I got through Leviticus without going to sleep.  With the rules in order to be clean I would have to eat only organic food with limited organic free range meat.  This sounds really expensive.

This past week I began to learn the practices of the Alter Guild.  There is something about the ritual of it that I can really appreciate.  I am in the process of searching online for the prayers that need to be said while preparing the Alter.  If anyone has this if they could share it with me that would be great.  However, right now I am having to discern Episcopal vs Anglican.  This is trying because often Anglican and Episcopal are used interchangeably online.

Now that I am back doing my normal routine.  I will be writing again next week.  If there are topics you would like me to write on I am more than willing to do that.

God Bless you and may you have his strength to follow in the path He has laid out for you.

ALMIGHTY and most merciful Father; We have erred, and strayed from thy ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against thy holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; And we have done those things which we ought not to have done; And there is no health in us. But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare thou those, O God, who confess their faults. Restore thou those who are penitent; According to thy promises declared unto mankind in Christ Jesus our Lord. And grant, O most merciful Father, for his sake; That we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life, To the glory of thy holy Name. Amen. BCP 1928 Morning Prayer A General Confession of Sin

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