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Category: Blog News

My Reflections on Fifteen Years of Blogging

blogging

I have now been blogging for fifteen years. Fifteen Years! Thousands of posts, tens of thousands of comments, and millions and millions of page views. I am humbled by the fact that people are still interested in my writing; that new people are still being added to the list of readers who regularly come to this site or access my writing via email or RSS.

Long-time readers know that I stopped blogging a few times over the years. They remember blogs with names such as Bruce Droppings and The Way Forward. In December 2014, I restarted this blog, using its current name, The Life and Times of Bruce Gerencser. I told myself, at the time, that this was my last attempt at blogging; that if I couldn’t emotionally handle the trolls, stalkers, and haters, I was done. Fortunately, thanks to weekly therapy, the addition of Carolyn as my editor, and the support of loyal readers, I have found the psychological wherewithal to handle miscreants such as Victor Justice, Revival Fires, Dr. David Tee, and countless others who try to harm me. Stricter comment policies and aggressive use of blocking software have lessened their reach, but, unfortunately, they continue to find ways to get at me. Victor Justice, in particular, has even gone so far as to make fake websites that attack Polly, my wife. (If you are an Internet security professional and have tools that could be used to find out his identity and stop his malicious, hateful attacks, I would appreciate your help. I have literally done all I can do on my end.)

I have increasingly used the emails and comments I receive from Evangelical zealots and apologists as fodder for posts. I find responding in this manner cathartic, especially when the person is a preacher. Imagine their surprise when they do a Google Search on their name or church and find out that this blog is listed first page right after their personal or church website. Karma’s a bitch. 🙂

Over the past couple of months, I have started rewriting and posting articles that were originally written in 2018. One reason for doing this is so stale posts will rank higher in Google. The higher the ranking, the more potential readers. Another reason is my declining health. Some days, I find it impossible to write new content. I am physically and mentally exhausted. Chronic, unrelenting pain will do that to me. Reworking a post requires minimal effort on my part and Carolyn’s. I hope long-time readers enjoy re-reading these posts and their comments.

I plan to continue writing new content as my health allows. Currently, my draft folder contains 1,134 potential posts, some dating back to 2015. I am also sitting on over 1,000 Black Collar Crime stories I have not posted! I have no hope of getting to all these drafts and stories, but I will do what I can.

I am currently a month behind in answering emails. I hope to get caught up over the next few weeks. I know that some people get upset with my lack of timely response, but there’s nothing I can do about it. Carolyn occasionally answers some of my emails, but many of them require a personal response from me. I answer every email I receive, but I cannot promise when you will receive that answer.

After Elon Musk reinstated Donald Trump, I deleted my Twitter account. I also decided to delete several other social media accounts. You can still find me on Facebook. If you send me a friend request and you use a pseudonym when commenting, please message me so I will know it is you when I receive your friend request. I am sitting on fifteen friend requests from people I don’t know. If I don’t know you or you are not friends with people I know, I won’t accept your request. Too many problems with trolls and hackers for it to be otherwise.

In my heart of hearts (whatever the hell that means) I still want to start a podcast. I have the equipment and content ideas I need to make it happen. I even have a hosting contract set up for the podcast. What I don’t seem to have is the physical strength I need to make this project a reality. Writing will always be my priority, but I do think having a podcast will widen my reach and help more people (or piss more people off depending on your perspective). I plan to make a final decision on this soon.

As I read through the comments on old posts, I am saddened by the fact that people who used to comment no longer do. Several readers have died. Others needed what I offered for a time and then moved on. I understand that that is the nature of blogging. People come and go. Just the other day someone commented who hadn’t done so in years. I was delighted to see that they were still numbered among the living. I know there will always be readers who love me until they don’t; they love a certain aspect of my writing, but don’t like another. Some people love my exposes on Evangelicalism, but hate my politics. I have learned over the years that I can’t be all things to all men. All I know to do is keep sharing what is on my mind at any given point in time. It is up to you the reader to decide if what I write is worthy of your support.

Some of you have been reading my writing for years. A few of you go all the way back to 2007. I want to thank you for your continued love and support. You have become “family” to me. As someone who rarely gets out of the house these days, I rely on my interaction with people on this blog and social media to keep me “connected” with the outside world. Thank you for all you add to my life.

How long have you been a reader? What brought you to this blog the first time? Is there anything you wish I would do differently or do more/less of? Please share your thoughts in the comment section.

Saved by Reason,

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Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 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.

Connect with me on social media:

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.

Do You Have Questions About Calvinism?

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I am currently writing a multi-part series titled Why I Became a Calvinist. I have noticed readers have questions about Calvinism. I plan to answer those questions upon the completion of the series. Please leave your questions on this post or the relevant post in the series. I will get to them sometime next week.

Thank you!

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bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 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.

Connect with me on social media:

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 Apologize for My Inability to Meet Your Expectations

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I get a lot of emails and social media messages from both strangers and regular readers of this blog. I genuinely want to respond to every email and message I receive. I try to answer blog/social media comments when I can, but I cannot keep up with the volume of comments I receive. I do read every one of them, but I am no longer able to answer every one of them.

As regular readers know, I have serious health problems: gastroparesis, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, and degenerative spine disease. Every day is a struggle for me. There is no such thing as a good day. Those days are gone (and wishing them for me is not helpful). I have embraced my present reality, my new normal. All I ask is that people understand where I am in life — and most people do.

I warn email senders on my contact page that it may take me a month or more to answer their emails. Currently, I am six weeks behind, working on emails from the end of August. Yet, I will have people send me multiple emails wondering when I am going to respond to them. They mean well, but their impatience is not helpful, and some days it is downright annoying, much like a toddler nagging you for a cookie.

Part of the problem is me. I over-promise and under-deliver. People want me to write on this or that subject, write about this or that criminal preacher, review their book, read their blog, listen to their podcast, etc. I tend to say I will try to do so, or even promise that I will. When I don’t follow through, people get upset with me. So, I apologize for giving you and others false hopes. Going forward, I will not do so. Starting today, I am clearing my “promise” list. I will do what I can, but I can no longer commit to covering certain subjects/people or doing things beyond my work for this site. I may in time get to things previously promised, but you shouldn’t expect me to do so. By all means, keep making suggestions, but I may not be able to meet your expectation.

My health continues to decline, ever so slowly. I am having increasing neurological problems with my hands (especially my dominant left hand). I fear I may someday have to stop typing. Not today, but typing has become difficult, at times painful. It’s just one more fucking thing for me to deal with. 🙂

I do want people to continue emailing me. I do want people to continue commenting on this blog and on my social media posts. I am just asking for your understanding if I don’t promptly respond to you. Please don’t take it personally. On my part, I will do better, not promising things I cannot deliver.

Thank you for your understanding.

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Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 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.

Connect with me on social media:

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.

My Interview with Jonathan Pearce, A Tippling Philosopher

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Earlier this week, I was delighted to do a live interview with Jonathan Pearce, A Tippling Philosopher. We had a wide-ranging two-hour discussion. If you were unable to watch it live, please watch our discussion on YouTube.

Video Link

Let me know what you think. If you are so inclined, please click LIKE on YouTube and leave a comment. Your support is greatly appreciated.

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 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.

Connect with me on social media:

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.

Did You Send Me an Email?

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Yesterday, I worked through a backlog of sixty-three emails. As far as I know, at 11:57 pm on August 4, 2022, I have no outstanding emails to respond to. If you are awaiting some sort of response from me, please resend your email and I will promptly respond.

Thanks!

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bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 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.

Connect with me on social media:

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.

Neeva.com Search Results for Bruce Gerencser

Today, I noticed a new search engine in this site’s server logs, neeva.com. Curious to see what a search on my name would return, I typed Bruce Gerencser in a search window and hit enter. Most of the links returned can be found on major search engines. However, what I found interesting was two questions about me that were answered by neeva.com, I assume by artificial intelligence (AI).

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bruce gerencser undermining the bible

sigh (please see Why I Use the Word “Sigh”)

and

laughing man
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Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 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.

Connect with me on social media:

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 Back From Vacation

Our vacation came to an abrupt end on Monday. We are back home, sweltering with the rest of you.

As some of you know, I have gastroparesis—an incurable stomach disease (constant nausea, frequent bouts of vomiting, severe bowel problems). I also have fibromyalgia and live with unrelenting pain in my spine and neck from arthritis, degenerative disease, and numerous herniated discs. I knew taking a trip anywhere was going to be a challenge, but I took the “fuck it, you only live once” approach. Polly doubted I was up to the trip, but she knows not to push back when I’m hellbent on doing what I want. Little did she know how bad it would be.

While it was pain and nausea that brought me home, I must confess I had, for a variety reasons, a mental meltdown.

I have OCPD (obsessive compulsive personality disorder). I like and need order. I’ve always been this way. Living with me can be a challenge, but Polly and I have found a way to make peace with each other’s shortcomings and phobias. We will soon be married for forty-four years, so I guess we’ve figured a few things out. 😂❤️

In our forty-four years of marriage, we have stayed in the homes of people not family five times. That’s it. I have a hard time staying or sleeping in any home but my own. We rented a VRBO property for our vacation. I thought, “Bruce, you can do this.” Boy, was I wrong. The place was not clean. I got a total of three hours sleep over two days. The house had a chemical smell from the improper cleaning of the floors. The floors had a film on them, so much so that walking on them left footprints. These things, among others, pushed me over the edge mentally (and I’ve been on the edge for awhile).

One of the reasons we vacationed in southeast Ohio was so we could retrace the sixteen years we lived there in the 80s and 90s. I pastored two churches, one in Buckeye Lake, another in Somerset. I grossly underestimated how doing so would psychologically affect me. I couldn’t help but think about the sacrifices I made serving a lie; how my commitment to the ministry harmed Polly and our children; how I sacrificed our economic well-being, believing God would provide; how I worked myself to death in God’s vineyard, causing me physical and emotional harm; how Polly never had an opportunity to be anyone other than the Preacher’s wife; how my children became extensions of my work and ambition.

If this is TMI for you, I understand. I’m human, and right now I’m broken. I’m grateful that I scheduled a therapy session before I left. I need it — badly. Don’t let anyone tell you certain expressions of religious faith can’t cause harm. They can, and for me anyway, I will spend my remaining days trying to come to terms with my Fundamentalist past and the harm it caused, hoping to somehow make an uneasy peace with the past.

No New Writing for the Next Ten Days

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Polly and I and Bethany are taking a vacation, starting tomorrow through next Sunday. We will be spending time in central and southeast Ohio. I won’t be posting any new articles during this time, though I will post a few Christians Say the Darnedest Things, Black Collar Crime articles.

If you have a guest post you’d like to submit, now would be a good time to do so.

Thank you for your support!

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bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 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.

Connect with me on social media:

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.

Friend Me on Facebook

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Last year, tired of dealing with trolls and insufferable Evangelical zealots, I left Facebook. Unfortunately, this move cut me off from many of my friends and family members. So, I have decided to return to Facebook. If you are inclined to do so, please send me a friend request. I am interested in friendships with people who regularly read my writing and support the work I do. I am NOT interested in friendships with trolls and apologists. I treat Facebook like the corner pub on a Friday night; a noisy boisterous place to hang out with family, friends, and acquaintances.

You can find my social media profiles here:

I look forward to interacting with you on Facebook.

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bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 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.

Connect with me on social media:

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