Author Topic: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer. (Minor Update - Post 51)  (Read 38464 times)

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Calypso

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #15 on: March 23, 2012, 09:20:00 PM »
You could "shift the ground" of the conversation, and take control of it, yet stay friendly.

"Co-leader, you have a tough decision to make. I really do understand it's hard for you to get close to someone you think is going to Hell. I'll understand, but be very sad, if you decide that's too hard for you. I'll never be joining your church, or any church---I really do get that you're trying to bring something you find important into my life, but it isn't going to happen. I hope you can stay friends with "Me, Non-church-goer" instead of wishing for "Me, can-be-converted someday," but if you can't, I understand."

magiccat26

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #16 on: March 23, 2012, 10:24:34 PM »
OP, I have a question.  I hope I don't seem too nosy and feel free not to answer/tell me to go jump in a lake.

How is the promise done?  Is there a heavy hand towards co-leader's deity of choice?  Your co-leader might see that you're okay with how things are done in the meetings and think that you're open to having a more personal relationship with her deity of choice.

I do think that, when it comes up, a good "no thank you" would be enough.  It would have to be said several times, which is a bit sad.  If all else fails, you could turn it back on her with how would her deity view her for pressuring a friend?  Or, if you feel it might help, going to their pastor, explaining what is happening, and ask for how to deal with it.  Don't name names, but just say that you know they are members of his church.  I would do that if I really couldn't stand it anymore as it might be seen as more of a nuclear option than a friendly one.


The GS promise:

On my honor, I will try
To serve God* and my country
To help people at all times
And to live by the Girl Scout law.

*God can be replaced with the deity of your choice.

The only problem with talking to the pastor is that this is the pastor's wife.  In this particular religion, the pastor's wife is often responsible for sheperding the women of the congregation (because men don't involve themselves in women's business.)
“If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning.” — Catherine Aird

AngelicGamer

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #17 on: March 24, 2012, 02:48:33 AM »
OP, I have a question.  I hope I don't seem too nosy and feel free not to answer/tell me to go jump in a lake.

How is the promise done?  Is there a heavy hand towards co-leader's deity of choice?  Your co-leader might see that you're okay with how things are done in the meetings and think that you're open to having a more personal relationship with her deity of choice.

I do think that, when it comes up, a good "no thank you" would be enough.  It would have to be said several times, which is a bit sad.  If all else fails, you could turn it back on her with how would her deity view her for pressuring a friend?  Or, if you feel it might help, going to their pastor, explaining what is happening, and ask for how to deal with it.  Don't name names, but just say that you know they are members of his church.  I would do that if I really couldn't stand it anymore as it might be seen as more of a nuclear option than a friendly one.


The GS promise:

On my honor, I will try
To serve God* and my country
To help people at all times
And to live by the Girl Scout law.

*God can be replaced with the deity of your choice.

The only problem with talking to the pastor is that this is the pastor's wife.  In this particular religion, the pastor's wife is often responsible for sheperding the women of the congregation (because men don't involve themselves in women's business.)

Yes, but couldn't he also reign in what his wife is doing?  Especially if she is putting people in the community on edge.

Otherwise, good luck!  And thank you for answering me.  :)




"Life's tough, huh?  And then you die." ~ Buck, the Magnificent Seven.

kherbert05

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #18 on: March 24, 2012, 04:34:11 AM »
"Look, I like you and I enjoy having your daughter in my troop. But I'm starting to feel really uncomfortable with the way you are pushing your religion on me.  When I say I am not interested, I really mean it.  So I need you to stop talking to me about it.  Thanks!"


I like this. But knowing smallish towns in the bible belt you need to judge if this type of direct response is going to hurt you and your family socially in the town. The big problem is they think they are right so they can do anything they want to pressure you.
Don't Teach Them For Your Past. Teach Them For Their Future

Redsoil

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #19 on: March 24, 2012, 04:44:33 AM »
"I do appreciate your invitations to church events, and I understand you'd like to see me there, but to be honest, that's not my chosen path.  I do hope you understand and respect my choice, as I do yours, because... "   (your friendship means a lot to me/I think you're a lovely person/whatever bit you want to use here etc.)  "...and I'd rather you not keep inviting me. Thanks!"  Then beandip if need be after that.

Good luck, and I LOVE the sound of your home decor! 
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pwy a wyr

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #20 on: March 24, 2012, 12:39:34 PM »
Hi.
The pastor's wife and your co-leader might even feel a level of responsibility in getting you saved. How about if you took that out?

"I know you care for me and want the best for me. You have made that clear. However, I have looked into your beliefs and your church and have made the informed decision that it isn't for me. If I ever have questions or change my mind, I know I'm able to come to you and ask you. Until that time, I need to ask you to drop it, as you're just making me feel disrespected and not want to spend any time with you. I really appreciate the relationship we've built and would be sad if it had to end."

It acknowledges their good intentions, shows that the input is unnecessary and unwelcome and allows them to back off with a clear conscience with regards to your soul.

I know some might say you don't have to show such consideration to their feelings, but you have to live and work with these people every day.

Hope that helps.

KenveeB

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #21 on: March 24, 2012, 05:33:42 PM »
"Thank you, but I'm not interested."
"Oh, but you'd love it if you gave it a try!"
"Sue, I'm really not interested. You've made this offer over and over again, and I really don't know what else to tell you. I'd prefer it if we could just drop the subject completely."

Cut her off before she gets into the 15 minute oration about why you would love it.

magician5

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #22 on: March 25, 2012, 02:57:19 AM »
"No pressure!  But we just really would love to see you more and worship with you!"

You: "Thank you, that's so kind!" Followed by silence.

If she presses further: "I have my own affiliation that I'm very happy with, but thank you very much."

Of course, you might go the "extreme route". HERE is my Youtube comedy video "Why I Worship Cthulhu".  "Suzy just loves the unholy orgies in honor of Yog-Sothoth, and we all have fun every time there's a picnic in the caves underneath the cemetery. Sometimes we even make s'mores afterward."
« Last Edit: March 25, 2012, 03:10:26 AM by magician5 »
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greencat

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #23 on: March 25, 2012, 05:16:44 AM »
"I don't discuss religion or politics with friends.  Let's stay friends, okay?  Ooo, look, beandip!"

JoW

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #24 on: March 25, 2012, 07:13:33 PM »
I lived among people like that intermittently for much of my life.  Many of them see your “thank you” as an opening to invite you again.  To get rid of them you need to stop thanking them for inviting you.  You may have to get very direct bordering on impolite.  “I am not going to attend church with you.  This is not open to further discussion.”  Then bean dip.  If your pest continues to talk about her church again walk away. 

Yes, that may end the friendship.  But if every conversation includes an attempt to convert you the friendship is already in bad shape.   



(Yes, I know I'm not as polite as most of you.  That's why I mostly stay logged out and read.  Maybe I can learn something.)

BeagleMommy

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #25 on: March 25, 2012, 10:04:58 PM »
I like the idea of saying "No thank you" and then complete silence afterward.

breny

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #26 on: March 25, 2012, 10:27:00 PM »
I just say simply, "Thanks, but I don't do church or organized religion." If they persist, I add, "God and I are cool with each other." It throws them off their game and messes up their prepackaged arguments.  I can't remember anyone trying to tell me that god and I aren't cool with each other.

Danika

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #27 on: March 25, 2012, 11:55:00 PM »
I lived among people like that intermittently for much of my life.  Many of them see your “thank you” as an opening to invite you again.  To get rid of them you need to stop thanking them for inviting you.  You may have to get very direct bordering on impolite.  “I am not going to attend church with you.  This is not open to further discussion.”  Then bean dip.  If your pest continues to talk about her church again walk away. 

Yes, that may end the friendship.  But if every conversation includes an attempt to convert you the friendship is already in bad shape.   



(Yes, I know I'm not as polite as most of you.  That's why I mostly stay logged out and read.  Maybe I can learn something.)

I have to agree. OP, you have been very polite. It hasn't worked thus far. Now, you have to get firm.

I used to live in what I called the Bible Belt of the North (a city with many zealous fundamentalists and evangelicals). I finally just had to move because I couldn't stand it anymore. I am the same race and I am straight, so they assumed that also meant that I held a lot of their beliefs. I did and do not. Once we planned to have a family, I told my DH that I would not raise children in that city because I wanted my kids to be exposed to more than just one way of thinking.

I advise that you do not JADE (justify, argue, defend or explain) your position. Just firmly say "You have invited me before. My answer is and always will be no. I am not interested. Please, do not bring this up again." If you get anything other than a verbal confirmation that they heard you, if they start saying "But..." smile, and firmly say "Please, excuse me" and just walk away.

I wouldn't want to JADE because I don't want your daughter to be branded a heretic or anything at school. There could be repercussions for her. Let them wonder what religion you are or are not. After that, if they ask you again, just keep repeating "I said I was not interested" and excuse yourself.

Next, be prepared for them to try to have your daughter for sleepovers on Saturday nights so they can take her to church with them on Sundays.

nuit93

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #28 on: March 26, 2012, 12:27:52 AM »

I like this.  I might also suggest going to their church to meet with the pastor and explaining to him what is happening and how it is affecting you.  This is a bit beyond just a social interaction in my opinion.  It is an attempt to proselytize and is inappropriate in the context within which they know you.  The fact that this woman was "recruited" to help bring you in is too much.

I'm not sure this would be the most effective method...for all we know the pastor is encouraging this very method.

gramma dishes

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #29 on: March 26, 2012, 02:23:10 PM »

I'm not sure this would be the most effective method...for all we know the pastor is encouraging this very method.

I agree.  The pastor almost certainly knows this is going on and if so, you can be assured that it's being done with his blessing.