Separate Realities

This week opened my eyes to the diversity of religions in America. Since I did not grow up in a religion and my parents never spoke to me about it, I had always grouped all Christian  congregations together. I had friends that belonged to different churches, but they were never very religious and probably wouldn’t be able to distinguish themselves how their practices differed from each other. Watching the film Separate Realities surprised me in how different the two congregations and the individuals who attended them were. These are two congregations I would have previously just classified under the realm of Christianity assumed they were very similar, when in fact they are starkly different. When I was taking notes while watching the film, I did so by focusing on the differences between the two individuals. It wasn’t until we started our class discussion after watching the film that I realized in many ways, Susan and Glenn’s stories are similar. They both had prior issues that religion helped them to deal with and overcome, and they had each found a congregation that was able to satisfy their religious needs. This to me reinforced that different people need different things, especially when it comes to religion. After reading Chapter 5 and learning about different ways of classification, it was interesting to think about where Glenn’s First Baptist Church and Susan’s Episcopal church. Learning about how to classify different religions was another part of what made me realize how diverse Christianity is and how diverse religion in America is as a whole.