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 What religion are you? 
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Last week we skirted around the issue or problem of religion. We talked about how it possibly can get in the way of being a "good" person with morals, and others said they are "good" people with good morals because of their religion. I really felt the need to let people tell about themselves, their religion, and how it affects or how it has affected them.

I am a Roman Catholic, and in the Bible belt (where we live) that is often not appreciated. I love being Catholic, and I do not believe I will ever convert to another denomination of Christianity or another religion. I truly believe in my religion, and so I act, hopefully, accordingly. I do not have a problem with anyone else of any other denomination, faith, religion, or non-religion. I have been taught over and over again to be curious and to learn about others. I not in the converting business, but I'll tell anyone anything about my religion. I love to learn about others, and I love to share things about me and my religion. There are many misconceptions about Catholicism, and often this makes me sad. I feel like ignorance is the main cause of people spreading falsehoods and of people not accepting others.

I hope others share!

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Lianna Denise Beard


Tue Oct 14, 2008 11:41 pm
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During my early childhood I occasionally attended a Presbyterian Church because it was the Church my mom was raised in; but as I entered my teenage years I (and the rest of my family) started regularly attending a Baptist Church, and this is where I accepted Jesus.

Being Southern Baptist, I always get those weird looks and harsh stereotypes, but so does every other religion or non-religion. I also doubt that I will ever convert to another denomination of Christianity or another religion simply because I feel in my heart that what I believe is right. This does not mean, however, that I am close-minded, or that I refuse to listen to other people talk about their own beliefs. I agree with Lianna that ignorance is the main cause of stereotypes and judging.

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Kimberly Smith

"In a completely rational society, the best of us would be teachers and the rest of us would have to settle for something else."
-Lee Iacocca


Thu Oct 16, 2008 9:57 pm
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To be honest I do not really follow a religion, however I will say that I lean towards Christianity in general just because I was raised in a more or less Christian environment. I also feel that in today's world people hold too much to their particular dogmas rather it is a religion or a lack of religion. Richard Dawkins and Muslim extremist are great examples of this. Therefore, I think it is important to follow what ever we believe, but also be tolerant of other people.

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Zach Yokley


Sun Oct 19, 2008 1:28 pm
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I was raised in a Baptist home and in a predominantly Baptist county, so I never really dealt with stereotypes involving my faith. Although I knew the stereotypes were out there, I never experienced them first hand and was a little surprised to be considered close-minded until I got to college. Admittedly, I have the capability to think that the way I think is the right way, but I think that this is true of most people. I agree with Lianna that these stereotypes generally come from ignorance as opposed to belonging to a particular religion.

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Mandi McGaha


Mon Oct 20, 2008 7:15 pm
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I was raised in a United Methodist home. I also live in the Bible belt so it was very odd to know someone who didn't attend any church at all in my community. There often was a sort of tension between the Baptists and Methodists in my community. Each church seems to have tried to gain the most people and coax them into their beliefs. Now, while I disagree with this sort of competition, I have still remained a strong Christian none the less. Much like Mandi, I realized how much I was considered "close-minded" when I got to college. Within my freshman year it was so weird for me to be only one of two people on my hall who woke up Sunday morning to attend church. I am extremely tolerant of those of any beliefs and feel that it is a personal choice. Like Lianna, I'm not in the converting business either and have been taught to be tolerant of others. I believe we must all look at the person for who they are rather than the religion they are associated with.

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Kristen Bumgarner


Mon Oct 20, 2008 8:52 pm
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I was brought up as a Christian and am still strong in my faith and the church. I never really dealt with religious stereotypes until I got to college. Surprisingly the most trouble I have dealt with has come from one of my close friends who grew up five minutes down the road from while we were growing up. This person is now at school with me, and from what I've gathered has no concrete religious views. I have heard the sterotypes that christians are hypocritical, and close minded. This is probably true of some Christians, but not all of us. There are hypocrites and close minded people in every religion. It was hard for me to deal with when my close friend mentioned things like "Jesus is stupid"..."I don't believe in God" "Christians are some of the worst people to deal with"...etc. I feel like if I'm considerate enough to not push my religion on someone else, or bash what they believe, that they should extend the same courtesy to me. People should be treated like PEOPLE....not like a religious stereotype!

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Maria Parker


Mon Oct 20, 2008 9:57 pm
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I was raised Baptist but we never really went to church or did anything religious. My family still says that they are Baptists when people ask what religion they are. I am Atheist. I have my own reasons for being so and my family is okay with this, even though they wish me to not be. I love discussing religions and trying to understand why people practice the religion that they do. I do not like to "convert" people to be Atheists, just like I do not like it when people try and "convert" me to be something other than what I am. I also do not like to talk about religion with someone who is easily swayed to someone else's beliefs. I think that people should look within and figure out what THEY believe in, not what others believe. If you go against the status quo, who cares, as long as you know what you believe in. I think it takes a lot of courage to stand up for what you believe in and I commend everyone who does. Just because someone doesn't believe the same as you, does not mean that you should not accept them for who they are. We are all humans and we all believe what we feel is right in our hearts. It's not just being tolerant of people... it's accepting them for who they are.

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Kelly York


Mon Oct 20, 2008 10:03 pm
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I would like to start out by saying that I really appreciate this discussion topic. My mother and my father consider themselves to be affiliated with different Christian denominations (even though they are very similar in principal), my mother considers herself catholic and my father considers himself episcopalian. While this is true, I did not grow up in a family that went to church. I did not start delving in to religion until I was in high school. Although I did not grow up in a church setting, I have always identified with a general Christian faith. I have always believed in God and in Jesus Christ, but I have only ever been briefly involved in an organized section of religion. In high school and some here in college, I experimented with different denominations, attending catholic, episcopalian, nondenominational, traditional baptist, and methodist churches. I am still in the stage where I am trying to figure out which denomination that I most identify with within the Christian faith. Having said this, I believe that I am a good person, and that I grew up with morals without being in an organized religious setting. However, I truly believe that religion can help to foster good morals, and has in several different cases. I think that it would have added to my life, but I don't believe it was necessary for me to grow into a good person and a giving human being.

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Brynne Pulver, Music Education/Vocal Performance


Tue Oct 21, 2008 9:10 am
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I have always been raised in a Baptist home. My parents always took me to church on Sunday mornings. All throughout high school I was a very active member in my church youth group but as I grow older I find myself drawing away from church. I do just believe that it is this age and do expect myself to continue with church regularly when i graduate from college. Majority of my community was baptist as well and all of my friends in high school were as well. I remember that the Hispanic community was mainly catholic. Many of the older people in our community would look down upon them, but it was just because they had only ever been exposed to baptist faith. There are not many different religions that are large in my hometown so this would make it hard for those to understand what others are truly about.

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Casey Davis


Wed Oct 22, 2008 1:55 pm
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I was raised Southern Baptist, and I still identify with this denomination. However, I think it is most important that I identify with being a Christian. No matter what denomination we're (Christians) from, it's important that we remember that we all believe that Jesus died for our sins and will return for us one day. It's all about His awesome love for each and every human being, and we should show that love and compassion towards others. Coming from an area where everyone I know goes to church, I did not realize or receive the "persecution" of being a Christian, especially a Southern Baptist, until I got to college. While talking with some people one day, they began talking badly about and making fun of Baptists (particularly Southern Baptists). I felt I should speak up, and when I did so, they became quite and were kind of suprised that I was a Southern Baptist. They just thought I was a non-denominational Christian. That is why what I said earlier is so important. But we should not bash other denominations or religions. That only shows disrespect and no one will want to talk to you or understand the Christian faith if you do that. It's the same with teaching and learning. Even though we may think differently, it is important that we listen to all sides of a situation. Stereotypes do come from ignorance, and we cannot help others unless we understand where they are coming from.

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Heather Holland Crow


Thu Oct 23, 2008 11:35 am
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I was brought up Christian (I guess you could say) but I never attended church when I was younger. I lived in Arizona until I was 13, and then when we moved here, I started attending a Presbyterian church with my family, and I still do. As we were discussing this topic in class, I got the impression that a lot of people in this class have the opinion that individuals who aren't "religious" can't have good "morals". I think that this is an absolutely ridiculous notion. Just because I was not brought up going to church every Sunday does not mean that I do not have a good, moral, honest background. I know many people who do not go to church (and have no religion to speak of) who have outstanding moral conduct. My Grandpa (my mom's dad) is one of these people. I'm not sure if he has ever attended church, but I think that he has the best morals and ethics of anyone I know. He is an inspiration and such a good person. Don't get me wrong, I think that going to church is a great thing; I love going, and I love my religion. But I can hardly say that my morals have come from my "religious background".

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Paige Kathleen Colbath


Tue Oct 28, 2008 1:33 pm
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I am a Southern Baptist. I was raised in church and still continue to go home every weekend to go to my home church. I think that more times than not religion does affect peoples' morals and values. However, I don't believe that individuals always follow those values. They know what is right but that doesn't mean that they always do what's right. When they don't they know that they're doing wrong! I agree with Paige though that not "everyone's" values are founded in religion. Everyone has morals and values whether they go to church or not!

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Jessica Mundy


Wed Oct 29, 2008 11:00 pm
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I was also raised southern baptist but i agree that i like to be defined as a Christian instead of that. To me, even though services may be a little different, most protestants are all Christians. We all believe in basically the same thing. some times i get really tired of being placed underneath a certain category and everyone has an opinion about another denomination. I do not think this should matter at all.

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Kristen P. Helton


Wed Nov 05, 2008 4:34 pm
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