Book review: “Why Men Hate Going to Church”
|November 8, 2006||Posted by Anthony under Blog, book reviews, General|
Well, not a full review.
I just finished this book and thought it was spot on in a number of areas. For quite a long time I was a man more or less indifferent to ‘going to church.’ I didn’t have objections to it, but on the other hand I never detected many tangible benefits to it, either, though I believed that others must be getting something out of it. In the last few years, my attitude has changed. Now, not only do I pretty much detest ‘church,’ I find it to be destructive in the ways that matter. I didn’t quite understand why I thought that. In the last year or so I’ve understood it better, but no sooner have I figured it out, I have learned how many others had already put their finger on it.
David Murrow’s “Why Men Hate Going to Church” does not describe me personally in every respect, but it does in a great many ways. The argument: the church has been feminized. I am inclined to agree. As Mr. Murrow points out, women can do ‘man’ things comfortably, but it doesn’t work the other way around. A girl can be a ‘tomboy’ and be well thought of. There is no comparable for boys. This does not reflect culturalization, it reflects the real nature of men. Thus, if ‘church’ is girly, most men aren’t going to willing to suck it up and ‘attend.’ They just won’t even go.
I consider myself unique. Most of the men in Mr. Murrow’s book have no real interest in theology, and philosophy, doctrine, etc. When confronted with things in ‘church’ that they don’t like they are at a loss to describe it, and since they lack the tools to do so, they are unable to see the distinction between ‘Christianity’ and ‘church.’ Thus, they reject Christianity on the basis of ‘church’ structures. For my own part, I see that the two can and should be separated. Thus, I am as disgusted by ‘church’ as many men are, but not with Christianity… and not with Christ. Still, I think that if men understood their responsibilities under God, they’d see that theology and such really captivated them and moves them.
Mr. Murrow does not draw this distinction as neatly as I would like, but I can see the argument for it. I agreed with most of what was in this book and found it to be insightful. Now, if only the mainstream clergy and laity (mostly women in the latter case, and quickly becoming mostly women in the former) will consider it.
Murrow’s site: www.churchformen.com