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Short Stories: A Crooked Sign

sign

My wife and I have thirteen grandchildren, aged two to twenty-one. Three of our grandchildren are ages 16, 15, and 14. All three are intelligent kids, straight-A students. I have found it interesting and enjoyable to watch them grow up. They are now at that age where they are not adults, but neither are they children; conversant in the things of the world, yet without much real-world experience. All three of them read my blog. They peruse my bookshelves, trying to size up the man they call Grandpa. My grandchildren don’t know much about Bruce Gerencser, the preacher. I had left the ministry by the time they were born. The Grandpa they know is disabled, unable to drive, a man who is a curmudgeon who loves to talk about politics, religion, sports, and make snarky, sarcastic jokes. My oldest grandson, the fourteen-year-old, and I were in the garage looking for my Hitachi corded power drill the other day. I need it for a project we were working on in the house. The drill was nowhere to be found. In the space of a few seconds, I said, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck. 🙂 Evidently, one of my children “borrowed” the drill and hadn’t returned it (I’ve threatened to put RFID tags on my tools so I will know where they are.) That meant I had to use “the beast,” a 1/2 inch drive Black and Decker drill I have owned for twenty-five years. As we came into the house, my grandson said with a smile on his face to his father, “Grandpa said the “F” word five times in two seconds!” We all laughed . . . and then I said fuck again. 🙂

Yesterday, my oldest son was over with his family for dinner. Polly and I made: fried catfish, fried shrimp, hushpuppies, asparagus (from our garden), and coleslaw, complete with beer, pop, or unsweet iced tea. After dinner, I noticed my son was trying to straighten up the sign I recently put up over our liquor cabinet. I said, “what are you doing?” I then told him that I meant for it to be crooked on purpose.

My sixteen-year-old granddaughter and fourteen-year-old grandson were perplexed. The grandfather they knew NEVER hung up ANYTHING crooked. EVER! Their father grew up in a home where a tape measure, shims, plumb-bob, and a level were never far away. He and his siblings have “fond” memories of helping me perfectly align the pulpit in the church’s front and center. I mean, perfectly align. Welcome to Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder.

By the way, this is the first time I have ever deliberately hung something crooked. I doubt I will continue down this decadent path. 🙂

Why the crooked sign? I love its take on the Bible verse: as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. 🙂 The crooked sign also reminds me of how Polly walks when she has drunk too much wine. 🙂

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Quote of the Day: A White Young Earth Creationist Evangelical Goes to Heaven

evangelicals-heaven

And I had this dream about a white creationist evangelical (WCE) who died and showed up at the gates of heaven.

Peter: “Why should God let you into heaven?”

WCE: “Who are you? Where’s Jesus?”

Peter: “I’m his representative. You know, the rock on which he built the church. You have to talk to me first and I need you to answer the question: Why should God let you into heaven? Keep in mind this is ‘Final Jeopardy.’” 

WCE: “I trusted Jesus as my savior, and I know Adam and Eve were real people. No Adam, no Jesus, you know.” 

Peter: “Did you feed the hungry?” 

WCE: “Well, I opposed abortion. I happily intimidated young women who were at the abortion clinic for an abortion. I showed up for anti-abortion protests, and I attended rallies in Washington D. C. to put pressure on the Supreme Court. A leaked draft on the day of my departure from Earth indicated that the Supreme Court was going to vote to abolish abortion. Oh, how I would have loved to have been there for that glorious moment of sticking it to the liberals!” 

Peter: “Calm down. This is not really a place that’s big on a lot of excitement and loud talking. Did you give water to the thirsty?” 

WCE: What do these questions have to do with getting into heaven? Look, I upheld the honor of God by opposing gay marriage. Gays are an abomination to the Lord. And I really hammered all those radicals who didn’t understand that boys should be boys and not transgender persons. I defended the bathrooms of America with all my heart.” 

Peter: “Did you know that I once thought Gentiles were an abomination to the Lord. Then, in a dream, God said to me, ‘What God has made clean, you must not call profane.’ What a jarring idea. When I went to the church council in Jerusalem, my fellow apostles and I had a real argument about this idea. And then, we decided to accept Gentiles. Do you think that applying the Jerusalem Church’s solution to inclusion could have been a good model for dealing with gays? Ok. Sorry for the rant. I have another question. Did you show hospitality to strangers?” 

WCE: “I did if they were godly people: you know, anti-abortion, anti-gay, anti-science, anti-history, American patriots. But immigrants? No! I was part of the Minutemen who patrolled our southern border to keep all those criminals out of our country. I don’t understand this ‘snowflake’ need to pamper illegal immigrants. You have to stand up for your rights, and our rights as true Americans are threatened by these criminals – our values were endangered. So of course I didn’t show hospitality to them. As a good Christian I defended nationalist, heteronormative, sexist, ablest, racist, and classist power because that’s what God demanded.” 

Peter: “Did you clothe the naked?” 

WCE: “Is this some kind of sex question. Why do you want to talk about ‘nekkid people?’ Have you no shame? This place is not a nudist colony, is it? Are there a bunch of free-love hippies wandering the grounds? Look, I protested the way women dressed so sensuously. Disgraceful, I tell you, disgraceful.”   

Peter: “Did you care for the sick?”

WCE: “I wrote letters and signed petitions against Obamacare.” 

Peter: “Did you know that the legislation was actually called the Affordable Health Care Act. Almost everyone favors ‘affordable.’ Everyone is in favor of ‘health,’ and who would ever oppose ‘care’? Did you forget that Jesus was a healer, the ‘great physician’? Do you remember the story of the man left for dead on the Jericho Road and the stranger who paid for his emergency room, hospitalization, and rehab? Again, did you care for the sick?” 

WCE: “Why are you telling me all this Bible stuff? What’s that got to do with heaven? I was trying to stop socialism, man.” 

Peter: “Hmmm. Well, did you visit the prisoners?” 

WCE: “I stood up for law and order, capital punishment, and long sentences for drug offenders. Lock’em up, I say. I opposed BLM, CRT, ‘wokeness,’ and all those liberal socialists in Congress. The Dems are demons, I tell you, and they are in the sex slave business with children. Ungodly.” 

Peter: “You have quite the resume. What else did you do?” 

WCE: “I was a true patriot who defended the flag, the Pledge of Allegiance, prayer in schools, ‘In God We Trust,’ and ‘one nation under God.’ I would have sent those professional ballplayers to prison for kneeling during the national anthem. I gave money to David Barton, a godly man trying to destroy the First Amendment to the Constitution. He really looks great in that red, white, and blue suit! Speaking of the glorious red, white, and blue, where’s the American flag?  Why isn’t it flying over this place?

Peter: “I should warn you that you seem to be conflating Americanism, nativism, sexism, and racism with Christianity. Is there anything else you would like to add?” 

WCE: “Well, I did my part to keep the world addicted to fossil fuels. I tried to help people to see that women must be submissive to men. And I supported all the efforts to rewrite American history to get rid of those liberal notions of systemic racism.”

Peter: “You really have quite the resume.”

WCE: “Thanks! And there’s more. I tried to help people see that God created the world in six literal days, and that evolution is a lie of the devil. And since the public schools – the devil’s playground – are infected with evolutionism, I have worked to convince parents to send their children to fundamentalist schools, where they will be taught a biblically consistent curriculum, and where they will learn the truth about six-day creation and the 6000-year-old universe.”  

Peter: What are you talking about? God gave you a brain, and this is the drivel you come up with?

WCE: “Oh, my, I forgot one of the most important of causes. I supported the Second Amendment to the Constitution. I believe in God and guns, lots and lots of guns. By the way, where are the armed guards, and why don’t you have a wall? My pastor told me that God loves walls, and that there was a huge wall in heaven, but I only see open spaces. Look, I know the line is getting long behind me, so let me sum up. God should let me into heaven because I believe in God, guns, the Bible, male superiority, and heteronormative white society. I believe in keeping America for real Americans, real patriots. I believe in the 4th of July as a Christian holiday, and the Pledge of Allegiance as the church’s creed. And I can’t wait to join the QAnon chapter here in heaven!”

Peter: “Oh my. Well, you can go through the door on the left. It’s a sort of holding pen for applicants with muddled answers. I will get back to you in a few million years with a final decision. In the interim I will register you for some remedial classes in science, history, and the Bible. Have a nice eternity. I need a break.”  

— Dr. Rodney Kennedy, Righting America: A forum for scholarly conversation about Christianity, culture, and politics in the US, A White Creationist Evangelical Arrives at the Gates of Heaven, May 16, 2022

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Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Christians Say the Darnedest Things: Women Who Have Abortions Should be Prosecuted for Murder

abortion is murder al shannon

But I want to argue that after wading through all of this nonsense, it is actually the mother who is the most responsible party in having an abortion. After all, the mantra, “my body my choice” should, if consistently applied, make that case.

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However, mothers are in actuality the most responsible for this vile attack on the Image of God and hatred toward mankind. It is the mother who has veto power over her own body—remember, “my body, my choice.” It is the mother who is ultimately responsible for allowing the abortion to take within her body on the separate body in her womb. She is the ultimate protector of the unborn; it is a great responsibility. And with that responsibility comes accountability.

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The only innocent victim in an abortion is the child who was murdered in the act.

So let’s stop with excuses. Under current law, no mother would be expected to be deemed innocent for choosing to murder her children.

— Jeff Maples, The Dissenter, Despite What Big Eva is Saying, The Most Guilty Party in an Abortion is the Mother, May 16, 2022

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Christians Say the Darnedest Things: The Slippery Slope of Our Oversexualized Culture — Porn Leads to Rape

Because of the culture being oversexualized, porn’s not a big deal. And if porn’s not a big deal, sexting’s not a big deal. If sexting’s not a big deal, sexual assault’s not a big deal. If sexual assault’s not a big deal, rape’s not a big deal, and all of a sudden we build a culture around the lie that sex is just this thing that happens between two people when they get together.

— Joshua Boone, Elizabeth Johnston, Joshua Boone on His Journey From the Porn Industry to the Kingdom of God, May 14, 2022

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

I’m a Satanic, Gay, Atheist, Former Pastor

peanut gallery

Last Fall, Vice News came to our home here in Ney, Ohio, to interview me for a video titled QAnon Conspiracies Are Tearing Through Evangelical America. So far, the video has been viewed 1,500,000 times.

Video Link

As one might expect, the comments, 11,000+, have been quite entertaining. Evangelicals have attacked me in every way possible. (And there have been a number of complementary, supportive comments too.) I knew this would happen. After all, the video exposed Trumpist Pastor Greg Locke as a nutjob and conspiracy theorist. YouTube comments can be vicious. Jesus’ followers seem to set their Lord’s commandments aside when commenting on social media. That’s why they find Locke so appealing. He’s a vicious, nasty, violent liar. Personally, I find their comments quite entertaining (and sad), reminders of what lies in the heart of many Evangelicals.

Recently, a man (maybe a woman) left the following comment:

satanist gay atheist

I am a former pastor who is a Satanic, gay atheist. 🙂

I AM a former pastor, and I am an atheist, but gay and Satanic? I am an atheist, so not only don’t I believe God exists, I don’t believe Satan/demons exist either. As far as being gay? Evidently, my rainbow-colored suspenders are a sure sign I’m g-a-y. 🙂 (I do occasionally wear them because I know they irritate the Hell out of Evangelicals. Other times, I wear them to show my support for the LGBTQ community. And, quite frankly, I like these suspenders. I have thirteen pairs of Perry Suspenders. I am a fashionista.) 🙂

Calling me “gay” is meant to be a slur, a way to personally attack me. Juvenile behavior by middle school boys who think it’s okay to call people fags, queers, or pussies. When, oh when, will God’s chosen ones grow up?

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Christians Say the Darnedest Things: Democrats Killed Jesus and Should be Excommunicated From Evangelical Churches

demoncrats

As I’ve written and pressed on this matter repeatedly, voting Democrat is a very likely indicator that one has not been born again. The argument goes: God isn’t a Democrat or a Republican, so it doesn’t really matter. Well, quite frankly, that’s just stupid. No Christian in their right mind would argue that God is a politician. But God does have a moral law that he expects Christians to uphold and the Democratic party was fundamentally designed to oppose it.

The Democratic party, at its core, is radically opposed to the standard of morality set forth in Scripture. Whether it be the continual expansion of the slaughtering of innocent children in the womb, the clamoring for the promotion of homosexuality and other forms of sexual perversions, including feminism, or the insistent push for redistributive theft, it goes without saying that everything the Democrat party stands for is biblically immoral. Jesus did not die for these things, he died because of these things–to free us from them.

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So let’s spell this out for those who aren’t getting it: This means you cannot be a Christian while supporting the slaughter of innocent children, gay rights, gay propaganda, “gay Christianity,” theft (redistribution of wealth), lawlessness (i.e. open borders), a complete and total lack of individual responsibility (i.e. nanny state welfare system, single-payer insurance, etc.), or the endless sweeping away of our right to worship God freely. If you support this godless ideology, or support candidates that do, don’t expect me to treat you as a fellow Christian.

— The Dissenter, Southern Baptist Pastor Says Voting Democrat Should Be a Matter of Church Discipline, May 12, 2022

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Bruce Gerencser