29 thoughts on “Podcast #3: Fundamentalists Abroad”

  1. There are now 500 posts on Stuff Fundies Like. I really need to get another hobby.

    Yeah, and I’ve read most, if not all, of them. Not sure what that says about my hobbies and booming social life…

    1. If you use the “download” link that’s at the end of the line right under your player you can manually copy them to your Zune.

      the podcasts used to show up in iTunes as well but it looks like that’s broken as of 5 seconds ago when I checked it.

  2. That was hilarious!

    The mission field is such a great place to realize fundie ridiculousness. How ’bout those missionaries who take “Round up” Sunday to the mission field to go along with their cowboy boots….duh! *shakes head*

  3. Excellent post! Definitely one of the best of 2010.

    I’m assuming you didn’t have a “God and Country Sunday” at your church or have a church-wide 4th of July picnic? πŸ˜€

  4. Having seen many fundy missionaries come and go here in Canada, I fully concur with your post Darryl. Unfortunately, your point about being able to learn another language is pretty accurate. The missionaries who came to Quebec were much better at adapting to the local culture.

    I could never understand why American missionaries spent so much time talking about right wing politics (I noticed that when they had health problems that their rhetoric about our health system cooled down considerably–I’ve seen some return to Canada when got cancer so they could get free treatment, Earl Jessup for example). As well, American fundy missionaries seem to be extremely prone to moral problems–ranging from adultery to child porn.

    1. Fundamentalists do seem to be obsessed with politics. I personally donÒ€ℒt care which is your dominant wing. Jesus isnÒ€ℒt running for anything.

  5. So good. I now work at a church in South Miami. Believe me, you don’t have to go to an island to encounter island people. What you said about baptism is so true. We had visitors yesterday, one of whom, from an island, had been baptized 2 months ago. The people were ready to throw a party. Anyway, it’s too early for rum, but I know where my bottle is. Pina Coladas this evening for me.

  6. Having grown up in (unnamed Scandinavian island country), I saw the same revolving door of missionaries just doing it all wrong as well, either by using Fundamental American Baptist tactics or by not bothering to learn the language. Can’t exactly go about doing things the American way in Scandinavia. My family, thankfully, chose a more robust, relational, and (daresay) more culturally rational methodology, and they haven’t run their ministry to the ground.

    An oddity to note: I’ve known other missionaries there who went too far in the other direction, legally changing their names (I’m pretty sure) to parallel the nomenclature, among other things, but I can’t be certain that it’s worked the better for them.

  7. Darrell,
    So true. Even though I’ve never experienced what you have, the Fundie “know how” is applied everywhere, no matter the circumstance and no matter the culture…the same template for every situation. So sad really because it furthers the belief that Christianity is strictly a Western belief system that is culturally based. So, in the end, we just look like a bunch of nominally educated (even that is a wishful statement)bunch of hoe handles trying to Americanize everyone else.

  8. I stopped going to American missionary baby showers when we were on the field because I didn’t like sitting through sessions of how silly some of the national’s customs were. Americans, of course, have no silly customs. Oh no we don’t. Do we? 😳

  9. I’ve known missionaries that were literally run off their mission field because they did not honor the local customs and tried to Americanize their neighbors/converts/victims. When they returned to their home church, they claimed that they were under the oppression of Satan and that there was nothing to be done about the region. So, rather than behave like adults, take responsibility, and apologize, they chose to claim American superiority and cut and run. Classy…. 😐

  10. While my father was on “deputation” (visiting churches around the country to raise financial support for his mission work) he gave away prayer cards by the hundreds to the folks in the various churches.

    A prayer card is sort of like an over sized business card for missionaries. It always carries a frumpy picture of the missionary family along with information about the mission field to which this family (or in our case, dad) had been “called.”

    My dad’s prayer card included the phrase “90,000 people without Christ,” referring to the entire population of the island of Dominica, which by the way was 95% Catholic.

    A year or so after we got to the island, dad, having been baptized in the church-as-a-business marketing and promotional model, thought it would be a great idea to promise a gift to everyone who brought a friend to church next week. The gift? One of dad’s prayer cards.

    A couple of my local friends wanted to know why my dad thought there were no Christians on the island.

    Another time my dad brought to the island, for a limited engagement, the film “A Burning Hell.” (This film deserves it’s own post from Darrell.)

    Dad showed the film on makeshift outdoor screens all over the island to huge crowds.

    The film was made by a church in Alabama, I think, and had a 100% white cast.

    My island friends got a kick out of mocking the film, glad to see that only white people go to hell.

    1. It’s something that I really want to do but producing audio (even of the poor quality found here) is just so time consuming that I’ve had to drop it for now.

      Maybe someday soon I’ll be able to get back to it!

      1. Somehow I had missed this. If I ever become a pastor or lead a missions conference, I may invite you to speak.

        My goal, had we actually made it to the field we were headed for, was to live as far from other US citizens as I could, and adapt as best I could to the local customs and culture, knowing that I would always be “the American”.

        Two of the most helpful experiences I had as I departed Fundystan were being in different hemispheres listening and observing people discuss my homeland from their perspective.

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