The five pillars of the protestant church

I just devoted a post to the Bishop of Saxony, Germany elevating cowardice as a christian virtue. Now I have the pleasure of reporting to you the brainchild of Bart Robbers, theologist and prominent D66 (liberal democrat) member. According to him (NL), the protestant church in the Netherlands is in dire need of "Five pillars", analogous to the five pillars in Islam.
According to Robbers protestantism suffers from poverty of form, a lack of rituals for religious life. Robbers derives his ideas from the way in which muslims give form to their faith.

Islam knows five pillars that offer structure to practical faith, from the obligatory daily prayer to the pilgrimage to Mecca once in a lifetime.
At the end of a more elaborate interview in the same issue (again NL) the five pillars are nicely summed up and contrasted to the five islamic pillars:
Five protestant pillars

1. A daily praise to the Eternal at the start of the day.

2. Every week, if possible with family or cohabitants, honoring and a prayer for the memory of loved ones, evening prayer, for instance on Friday.

3. Celebrating in the community or at home the important days: The Christ celebrations of the birth of the Lord (This is a literal translation. Why isn't he just saying Christmas? -KV), the three days of Easter, Pentecost - or also other days to be honored.

4. Once every year going into retraite for at least three days in a spiritual surrounding, if possible with memebrs of your relgious community.

5. Once in ones life a year of special service [to the community or society]
If it really is true that Dutch protestantism needs more rituals (which I would argue against. And I have a copy of the 'Order of Services and Heidelberg Catechismus' tacked to the inside of my churchbook to back me up), aren't there enough examples to chose from within Christianity? The Orthodox churches maybe? Catholicism? The Lutheran-Evangelical church?

In the interview Robbers says:
A believing muslim gives form to his faith in day to day behavior. That's where it is from: muslims have 'pillars' - the rules of a life in belief. Jews have something similar. Catholics have a treasure of personal rituals, even if they are somewhat worn out.
So, the good mr. Robbers is current with the goings on in systems of faith much closer to the protestant church. Yet he still choses to forego two more likely candidates and to adopt the system as we know it in Islam. Oh, and "a believing muslim giv[ing] form to his faith in day to day behavior", doesn't that include shouting 'Allahu Akbar' just prior to plowing your newly acquired 737 into tall buildings, or explosively scattering yourself over a large area of a downtown market in Baghdad or a bus in Tel Aviv? This is a good example of expressing "faith in day to day behavior" because...?

Also note pillar number 2: "Every week, if possible with family or cohabitants, honoring and a prayer for the memory of loved ones, evening prayer, for instance on Friday." Given protestant tradition in the Netherlands of preparation for the Sunday service(s) I would think doing that on a Saturday would be more logical. However, if Robbers is of a multicultural streak (which his deep involvement in D66 seems to suggest) the suggestion for Fridays (and specifically NOT on a Saturday) all of a sudden becomes painfully clear, doesn't it?

Has is really come to this? Has the moral decay of the protestant church in the Netherlands progressed so far that we're actually considering modelling the practice of our faith after the islamic example? The one example that is responsible for so much inhuman grief in the world? Have we really come to the point that we are selling out our own religion to an enemy that isn't even strong enough to rule us yet? Have we really become a country of women and women with penises to such an extent that we now are pre-emptively surrendering what is ours?

The only reason I can think of why this particular approach was chosen by Robbers, is that he instinctively feels the danger the Western world is in. Whether it is actual islam or it's guardian, multiculturalism, Robbers knows which way the wind is blowing. And instead of resistance he chooses to pre-emptively make his own faith more acceptable, more like the faith of his future de facto rulers.

But if he knows this much, shouldn't he also know it'll have precious little effect on those he seeks to placate? You're still in infidel, Bart. Get used to it.

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...