Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Ireland's Church Bar vs. Utah's Church Ball

With today's news of the passing of state liquor laws, I was immediately reminded of Ireland. OK, so I've only visited twice, both times were for business. While there, our company had a gathering at a local bar called the Church bar. In fact, it was a local bar that had originally been St. Mary's Church more than a couple centuries ago. As more Dubliner's began to leave the church behind, in all but culture and heritage, they also stopped giving money to their churches, so many become empty.

Even visiting the famous St. Patrick's Cathedral, for which we celebrate St. Patrick's day in the US on Sunday resulted in a beautiful choir, with a mostly empty Basilica and collection plate.

On my last trip to Dublin, I had the opportunity to share a pint or two with some Dublin natives. I asked them what they thought of the religious transition, how they were brought up, and where they were now in that religious transition.

Their responses astounded me. Most replied that in their youth, they and their families had been faithful church goers and believers.

"But your not now?" I replied. "What happened for you"

"The Internet." They replied matter of factly.

As I pressed, they continued to intimate how with the internet, and nearly the whole of human knowledge available to those who seek it, they were able to study and investigate their church's history, doctrine and dogma, and began to realize that it didn't agree with their own personal cosmologies.

Who knows? Perhaps someday, folks will travel through Utah and play basketball at the new Sports Gym appropriately called 'Church Ball' that used to be a Mormon Stake Center, forced to close down by the people's insistence on knowing their history and following their conscience as well.


Katie said...

The truth shall set you free... knowledge is power... etc. etc. etc. Cool post!

Brent said...

Thanks Katie.

C. L. Hanson said...

I saw something similar in Holland: a church converted into a bookstore since they just don't need as many churches as they used to.

Brent said...

I love it. Indeed, I think my church is now books. There is so much to learn now!

Emily Pearson said...

One can only hope.

Suz said...

Mr. Brent...
It sounds like your loving living in UTAH! hehehhe... :)
Hope all is well~ Tell Colleen Howdy for me..

ElGuapo said...

Did you by chance visit Belfast? I found it to be quite a different atmosphere from Dublin, for entirely religious reasons.