Saturday, January 24, 2009

#10 Visitors

If you ever get invited to visit a white Christian church, don't miss out on this opportunity - you will not be disappointed. As a visitor, you have no idea how much the white Christians look forward to your visit.

As a visitor, you can prepare to be welcomed upwards of 50+ times in both formal and informal settings. Even before sitting down for the actual service, your hand will ache from navigating the carpal-pumping mine field of elated white Christians, each lined up and eager to happily and aggressively
greet the new-comer.

Upon starting the service, the speaker will formally welcome you (in case anyone missed informally welcoming you), and encourage you to fill out an informational piece of some kind (frequently with golf pencils) that will enable the white Christians to follow-up on your visit. Following up is a sort of white Christian "future-welcome". You will then likely be invited to check out the information rack/table/booth after the service, and then to join someone for post-worship refreshments, or even Sunday dinner. Don't be frightened by any of these actions, they are completely normal- the white Christians are just really happy that you have joined them.

After brief announcements, the congregation will all stand up at the same time and start shaking your hand again. Don't be alarmed- they're simply greeting you (and each other) again. This familiarizes the white Christians with the people that are around them.

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Editor's Note: if you're visiting this blog, we'd really like thank you for joining us, and we'd like to formally welcome you. We're not after your money or anything like that. In fact, we would just ask that you sign your name on the comments section, tell your friends about this blog, or join the SWCL Facebook group, and let that be your gift to us. Thank you again for joining us. We hope that you'll be back again soon!

9 comments:

Abraham Calvin said...

What I find fascinating is that in some white Christian churches, members are not content to merely greet those in the immediate vicinity of their pew, but will venture out, going up and down the aisle to greet others (visitors or not). This seems contrary to the desire of white Christians for structured and orderly worship services.

Abraham Calvin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrew said...

Similar to leaving your pew during the greeting time is the foreign concept of walking in after the worship team has begun the praise and worship music at the beginning of the service. At most white christian churches, you are late if you are not in your seat when the singing starts. You will find that there is a strong correlation between how people enter the service and how frequently you will see people venturing from their pews during the greeting time.

Luther Zwingli said...

Excellent observation, Andrew- your white Christian IQ is truely impressive.

As Notorius used to say, "Mo' late entrance, Mo' greeting wandering."

Luther Zwingli said...

Hey, Abraham- nice Blogger ID image- looks great!

Laura said...

Greeting after the brief announcements is also a great way for shy white Christians to avoid awkward conversations – they may simply shake a person's hand with a smile and a "good morning," then immediately turn to greet another. No small talk necessary. However, after service greeting can get awkward when there are some eager, talkative white Christians who choose to block the aisle after the service in order to catch up, leaving others in their row standing uncomfortably and eventually forcing them to exit their row the other way.

Drew Burton said...

Unfortunately, the first Christian sporting events were lions versus Christians. The lions were a lot better than the Detroit Lions.

--Drew

Aves said...

Episcopalians, although we love our greeters and supply them in abundance, have also built greeting fellow worshippers into the liturgy, with "The Peace". We hope to avoid potential embarrassment for visitors by shaking hands with newcomers and veteran parishioners alike; however, there is controversy not only over the new practice of leaving the pew to stroll about the church exchanging the peace (with some believing that this is a more inclusive practice, and others holding that such informality is best reserved for coffee hour) but also the replacement of the traditional handshake with a hug! (As you've noted, white Christians - and you don't get much whiter than Episcopalians - guard our personal space as closely as we do our salvation!)

I discovered your blog in a comment on Stuff White People Like - it's excellent that we can laugh at ourselves. Well done!

Luther Zwingli said...

Aves- thanks for your contributions via comments, and for discovering and reading SWCL.

Feel free to joing the facebook group and spread the good word. Afterall, sharing good news is definitely something that White Christians like...