Blog Post 1/25

Last week I visited the First Congressional Church of Redlands. Over all I enjoyed my time at the church and felt very comfortable there. It was obvious after viewing the service that this church was practicing official religion. It was a very formal service, sang traditional hymns, and it was very evident who the pastor was based on his suit and tie. One aspect of this church that I found interesting was how rhetorical the service was. Many questions were asked that had to do with specific events and stories from the Bible. People from the audience would often shout out the answers, so it was very evident that a large majority of people present knew the information in the Bible. For those not as familiar, the pastor would fill in and still give a lot of background, so others could follow the service. Towards the end of the service, the pastor wrapped it up with asking everyone a question allowing people to privately reflect. Going to a service like this was very new to me. I was used to the pastor giving a lot of personal stories and reflection while only referring to a few verses in the Bible. The use of stories and allowing people to privately reflect made the service seem to carry more weight for people. I felt that it gave more people a personal private relationship with God that only they knew about, rather than sharing personal stories with other people and then praying. I would feel very comfortable going back to this church and enjoyed getting another perspective on how other churches run their services.