Ugh long story warning!
I am american and my wife is chinese. i am a deconverted christian from a couple of years ago and I am still a closet atheist. I mentioned before I feel I could really hurt my relationship with friends and my job if I came out about it. My wife doesnt believe either. I took my wife to chinese church over the past summer so she could meet chinese people and also see what church is like. It wasnt a very good experience. Alot of the people were strange but thats another story.
Fast forward my wife gets a call from one of the chinese ladies from the church saying they are going to have a party to celebrate chinese new years. Mostly american men who have chinese wives and most go to the church. She promised my wife they wouldnt do anything church like and just celebrate their New Year.
My wife wanted to go and I told her...
Anyway, she thought they wouldnt deceive her and she wanted to go and make food and celebrate new years so I said fine I would go for her. I can pretend to still be a good little christian. I know all the right things to say. So we show up at the host's house and there are about 50 people there. Its funny because i am 30 and my wife is 29 and we are the youngest couple easily. Most of the men are much much older with signifcantly younger chinese wives. We eat chinese food and talk with some of the people and everything is fine. Then it turns into a church service. I will share some of the stuff I witnessed and some of my thoughts. Alot of these thoughts came from studying this site. I am better at critically thinking about religion after being here a while
They have a tv hooked up to the computer and alot of audio equipment including microphones. The foldout chairs and couches are set up all to face the front. The host tells us we are going to sing some christian songs. No one complains and everyone joins in and I thought ok I can tough out a few songs and then maybe we will celebrate the new year. Well after a few songs his chinese wife comes up to speak.
She starts talking about their marriage and her teenage son from a previous marriage. They had been married for about 10 years and she talked about alot of problems they had in the past and how her (weird creepy) husband did not get along with her son. So in front of 50 people including her teenage son she says one time my son tried to stab his stepfather with a kitchen knife. I am thinking what the fuck. why are you telling this in front of your son with 50 people many of whom your family barely knows. She then said but God is good and got us through those problems. I of course thought if he was so good you wouldnt have had problems and your son wouldnt have tried to kill your "godly" husband.
2 preachers were at this party. One is chinese and he is the head of the church. the other is a a 60s ish white guy and his white wife. The chinese preacher didnt talk very long so i will skip that part. The white preacher got up and started talking in mandarin with his wife translating. I thought wow thats impressive. Turns out they were missionaries in Beijing from 91-96. I thought well maybe since its chinese new year party he will talk about his time in China. I was really wrong.
He did a sermon on marriage relationships and trying to justify the Bible when it says a woman should submit to her husband because he is the head of the house. He went on to point out another verse about how men and women should submit to each other. Therefore the man and woman are equal. Everyone is nodding buying it hook line and sinker. All I can think is those verses contradict each other. Which one does God really want? Why cant he make up his mind???
He then puts on a drama with his wife. Couple 1 and couple 2. Couple one the husband comes home and orders his wife around and demand she clean and cook and all this stuff. really angry. couple 2 he is like honey i love you but could you keep the house clean blah blah blah. Really basic marriage advice that even a child would know. I am thinking both of these couples suck haha. He says which couple is following bible. Of course people say couple 2. I am thinking no its couple 1. The woman submits to the man. how do they not see the ridiculousness of this. He says couple 2 follows the Bible and couple 1 is every couple that doesnt have god in their lives. Really???? I dont order my wife around or butter her and ask that she cooks and cleans for me. Is this guy for real? haha. This guy speaks for about an hour and says he doesnt want to give a full sermon because this is a party not church. Could have fooled me
Anyway next they do prayer request and this is when i wanted to throw my chair at people. First they ask if anyone wants to pray for health. So 2 people go up. One lady prays for her cold and one guys prays for a pulled muscle in his arm? I am thinking "Are you fucking serious" There are literally millions of people starving, living in extreme poverty, inflicted with serious illness etc. why are you so special??? Even in my latter half or christian life I never prayed for frivilous things about me. I felt guilty and only prayed for the bigger issues and people with worse problems. And when you get over your cold or pulled muscle are you going to say God healed me omg. I almost wish I was an amputee. I would have asked for them to pray my arm grows back
They even did the whole laying on hands and putting oil on them. Never seen people actually use oil in prayer before. I wanted to offer to get some valvoline out of my car because the bible didnt specify what kind of oil
Ok then the host's wife came up again and told us that her parents are 91 and both are only expected to live about another week. Her dad cant talk and her mom cant speak. They both live in China so she has to call the housekeeper to find out how they are doing. Furthermore, neither of them are believers. So she starts crying and worrying that they are going to hell. I thought this is so retarded. If you really cared about them not suffering unbearable torture for eternity you would buy a plane ticket immediately to china and try your best to convert them before they died. but I guess she just couldnt be bothered to do that much.
Then she asked all the other women who's parents werent christian to come up and pray they convert. So about 7 or 8 came up and they all prayed and they were bawling as they prayed. My wife gave me a WTF look. haha.
So after about 2 to 2.5 hours the church service was done and I thought ok fine I can finally escape. We told everyone we needed to go and they kept trying to get us to join their church and bible groups. But we got out of there. My wife is like I never want to spend time with them again haha. she was disappointed because this was supposed to be about Chinese new year and they didnt even talked about it one time! Being back in a group like that for the first time in a long time felt strange. It was almost like I was outside looking in and thinking are all these people crazy???
Anyway, as much as I wanted to call them out on various things through the night I held my tongue. I really cant let it get out i am no longer a believer right now. not to mention they invited us to their party so I didnt want to be rude. But if you guys went what would you have done. I was curious thinking about the members here that probably wouldnt have put up with it. Would you have left when they started church? Would you have called b.s. on everything? Would you have stayed quiet?
Sorry it was long but I wanted to tell someone what I thought besides my wife. I will probably remember more later but thats it for now.