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 How to address a sibling teenager asking why I left xtianity?

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Bee

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Join date : 2011-09-12

PostSubject: How to address a sibling teenager asking why I left xtianity?   Thu Sep 22, 2011 4:39 am

I was there for my sister before she was born, I even was in the delivery room helping my mother give birth. I named her and took care of her. I have taught her xtian values and have been involved in her life and would have her attend xtian camps with me. Our mother is catholic and I have plenty of AG (assemblies of god) missionary family members in south america. I dedicated all my life to teaching and xtian ministries. I came out of the closet..."the Judaism" closet by posting my Rabbi's and Bnai Noach's on my facebook and Judaism on religion. I did not make any verbal announcements or try to convert or convince none of my deep rooted xtian friends. Long story short...during a FB conversation my little sister who just turned 18, asked 'why". She had noticed my new Jewish blogs and friends. I did not know how to answer her or felt I could loose her somehow. I don't want her to throw away religion and be an atheist. I don't want her to feel we lied about Gd or gone crazy. She is in alot of pressure right now and is going to have pre med classes because her priest told her she cannot be a nun without a degree and help support the church..the priest told her to be a doctor, this crushed her. Can anyone share how to tell her? My family is already concerned and word has gone out...my brother who is a missionary wants to skype a conference call with me ...I have been asking around if we have Jewish relatives. They have already disowned an uncle for "loosing it" he was the first missionary in the family, and last February my brother called because he heard I had left AG and I told him I was studying the Hebrew scriptures and comparing them to our bible, he warned me not to study like that because it caused our uncle to loose his mind, he said to live by faith. I have been avoiding his request through my mom and I tell her I can't talk to him right now. Anyways back to the topic ==>
She wanted my advice on her fear of demons and I told her that xtians would pray a certain prayer to chase them away, this is a brief example of that conversation:

Me:anyways, demon stuff is a state of mind and belief...
most christians when they go through that they use the "name" of jesus to scare it away

Sister:oh I forgot you're now jewish
where did this come from?
You were a MEGA Christian
I'm amazed I think the world is going to end

Me: if you cant conquer that fear in ur mind,, use that catalyst (Jesus) to focus on and it will give u a sense of peace.
lol...ur not ready for that answer...

Sister:LOL oh ok
Do you have an answer? or it just happened

Me:Really, ur not. and no it didnt just happen,

Sister: Oh ok I see
Did you study the religion for a year?

Me:you know we have been "mega"xtians but then we went into the study part and could not deny what we found out. Believe me it was heart breaking and led us to where we are today
like i said its not for u right now...but i will never deny u the truth if u ever wanted it either.

Sister:think right now I'm ok being my own form of catholic

Me:yes i know...

Sister: lol I like picking and chosing different things that make sense
and not being forced to do rituals I dont believe are fit











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Bee

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PostSubject: Re: How to address a sibling teenager asking why I left xtianity?   Fri Sep 23, 2011 9:18 am

My husband told his buddy yesterday we are following Judaism and are Bnai Noah. He did not know what to expect but took him for lunch and had to tell him. His friend lost his son last year and has a daughter who married a Jewish man. He had been upset that his grandson wants to be a Rabbi and his daughter had converted to Judaism. My husbands friend was also upset that his son in law is moving his family over seas. His wife has lupus and he feels he is loosing his only child left. My husband has been very quiet about us leaving xtianity, and had told his brother who is in the military and he has not talked to him since, so he is not too eager to talk about it. His friend was shocked and did not know what to say, but my husband reassured him that his daughters family are going to be ok. He explained to him what we are and that we follow Judaism. My husband hopes that telling his friend would feel better about his son in law and that he is good people. So if he feels my husband is good people he should find comfort that his son in law is also. My husband is my hero and it gives me courage to talk to my family and sit with my friends and be honest with them. If my friends cannot accept me, than its time to get new ones. My family may feel shaken about it (since I had alot to do with xtianity in their life) if they trusted me then why not now...since I helped lead them into xtianity, I pray I can lead them out. I am not grounded enough to attempt to but maybe with my honesty it will help. I know I will have to face my brother and my relatives will not be so understanding...but my mom will accept me, I know she has been calling alot and worries about me but we have to have that Gd talk. My little sister...I still don't know what to say to her and for some reason I don't know if I should just keep avoiding that conversation and let her get use to it for a while...then in a few years discuss it? (Ugggh I am a chicken)
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Dena

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PostSubject: Re: How to address a sibling teenager asking why I left xtianity?   Fri Sep 23, 2011 1:12 pm

Bee wrote:
My family may feel shaken about it (since I had alot to do with xtianity in their life) if they trusted me then why not now...since I helped lead them into xtianity, I pray I can lead them out.

Bee, may I ask why you feel it's your job to pull your family out of Christianity? Is this something you've been told you need to do?
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Bee

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PostSubject: Re: How to address a sibling teenager asking why I left xtianity?   Fri Sep 23, 2011 2:00 pm

No I don't feel its my job, my family has always held me in the highest regards. They tend to hold me to account for prayers, advice on spiritual matters. Honestly I would love to share this with them like we always had but I realise now I can't. I love them so much but its their own life. I rather they be xtian than be an atheists. It lead us to the truth and pray it does for them. My husband and I had always been the perfect example of a penticostal couple that would be a "witness" to friends and family. He went to Seminary school, I was the childrens church minister, etc. My husband preached and "saved" his closes friends and now they have their own mega churchs. Three months ago we went through severe guilt and pain among repentance, because we lead so many to jc. Now we have peace about it and realised all have their own path. We are going to live a life they see and want for themselves...no more preaching or witnessing, our ways of life will make them curious. One of my catholic friends wants to have Shabbat with us. My husband at first did how xtians would do, try to convince his youngest brother who he also lead to "christ" about Judaism, it was our first mistake and first lesson that is not how it works. We are learning as we go and are stripping down our former ways.
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Mychal

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PostSubject: Re: How to address a sibling teenager asking why I left xtianity?   Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:38 pm

I think the best thing you can do is just be Jewish and let everyone else do what they want to do. It's not your job to prop them up in their religion--whatever that may be. If they want answers to spiritual questions, then give them your opinion from a Jewish perspective.

Also, being Jewish means a lot of leading by example, but not much in the way of preaching. Focus on being the best Jew you can be and don't worry about changing them at all. Judaism is a universalist faith, meaning pretty much everyone that is moral and ethical is believed to have a place in the world to come. It doesn't matter if your family believes in Jesus or the Dalai Lama, so long as they are good people, they'll be alright. Same goes for your sister; just keep stressing right living.

Why you want to convert is never an easy answer, because it's not something that has only one answer/cause, and it's as much feeling as it is logic. If the decision to convert is fairly recent, you may need to tell people, "I'll tell you why some other time," because, as I've found, it can take a while to sort through your reasons in your head.

I've been working on my conversion/acceptance speech (i.e. what I would deliver to the congregation at my conversion ceremony) for a while, and trying to explain things to a Jewish audience in a reasonable length of time has really helped focus my feelings into something that can be expressed. You may want to spend time likewise writing an imaginary speech to help explain yourself. I think by the time you feel that it's perfect, you will have a lot less trouble expressing yourself to your non-Jewish family.
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Bee

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PostSubject: Re: How to address a sibling teenager asking why I left xtianity?   Thu Sep 29, 2011 10:38 am

Mychal wrote:


Why you want to convert is never an easy answer, because it's not something that has only one answer/cause, and it's as much feeling as it is logic. If the decision to convert is fairly recent, you may need to tell people, "I'll tell you why some other time," because, as I've found, it can take a while to sort through your reasons in your head.

100% correct. After years of teaching bible studies, I can't explain anything and avoid such conversations of why Judaism. All I can say Judaism requires both human and spiritual intellect. Everyday I learn about the genius of our Creator. I am in constant awe of Him.
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Mychal

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PostSubject: Re: How to address a sibling teenager asking why I left xtianity?   Fri Sep 30, 2011 1:36 pm

For me, I'm all about things needing to be logical and to sound like the truth to me. I have had a problem with Christianity for some years because it's not logical in many important ways. As I sometimes tell people, I was doing fine until I learned that Mary was not the third branch of the Trinity.

It made sense--in my child's mind--that Mary be part of the Trinity. You had God on one end, a human being on the other end, and Jesus in the middle as half-and-half. You also had Mary as a woman, Jesus as a man, and God as neither/both. Balanced and logical. Then I was told that the Holy Spirit was the third branch, not Mary. "What's that?" "It's God." "God, God and Jesus do not make a trinity; that's a duality." "No, it's a different part of God." "You can't separate God into parts; He is everywhere. There's no part of God that's separate from God." "That's why the Trinity is all God." "But I'm not seeing any separateness." "That's just the way it is. I can't answer you any more than that."

Worse was when I found out that Jesus wasn't half-and-half but 100% God and 100% man. I was really bad at probability and statistics in high school, but even I know that someone is not 200% of anything. President Obama is half-black and half-white. He's not 100% black and 100% white.

There's also the problem that Jesus, at least, never told anyone to stop keeping kosher and stop being circumcised. He said, "I have not come up uphold the law, but fulfill it." Then Paul comes along about a hundred years later and says, no you don't have to do any of those things; stop being Jews and start being Christians. But I look at that and say, if God didn't want people keeping the law, then why didn't Jesus tell them to stop? Who is Paul to undo something even Jesus didn't undo?

Even as a kid, I had a problem with the Old and New Testament in tandem. I said if you're going to go with the New Testament, you need to go with the New Testament. You can't cherry-pick laws out of the Old Testament when it suits you. If the New Testament has replaced the old, then it's replaced EVERYTHING; quit reading the Old Testament. But no one ever does.

This is to say nothing of studying the Bible more fully and realizing that Jesus didn't fulfill the vast majority of Messianic prophesy, and what he did do wasn't the most useful bits (who cares about riding in on a donkey; let's have some world peace!). So, ultimately, you can't believe in both the Old Testament or the New Testament. As Abraham Lincoln said about the two sides of the Civil War, "Both may be--but one must be--wrong. God cannot be for and against the same thing at the same time." If you believe that God doesn't lie and He doesn't change His mind, then you cannot read, in the Old Testament, His repeated promises to the Jewish people that they will always be His people, and also believe that there is a New Testament that He made with non-Jews which replaces the Jews as God's chosen messengers of His word. Both Testaments may be, but one must be, wrong. God cannot replace a people and keep a people at the same time.

My mother is a classic example of someone who talks about Jews as being "God's chosen people," without knowing what that means. She thinks it's about God liking Jews more than other people. If she knew that it means Jews were tasked, by God, to spread monotheism, and that the Christian church (of all denominations) has always taught that Christians have replaced Jews in that mission (known as "replacement theology"), then she would realize that there is an either/or conflict there.

On the whole, I just can't make Christianity make sense, but the more I learn about Judaism, the more it makes sense. So, that's most of my explanation... which I tend to keep to myself, because if I started pointing all of this out, either it would go over people's heads entirely, or I'd ruin their faith for them. From what I have heard of other Christian converts, they feel the same way, and they also have a tendency to refrain from mentioning, because they don't want to look like they're tearing down Christianity and trying to ruin it for everyone. So I think a lot of people just never explain themselves and instead rely on a more nebulous, "Just feels right" answer.
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