Social Question

Dutchess_III's avatar

Is it hypocritical for me to volunteer for a program that is very heavily Christian based?

Asked by Dutchess_III (38787points) 4 days ago

It’s Habitat for Humanity.

Their mission statement is: “Seeking to put God’s love into action, Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope.”

Their number one principal is to “Demonstrate the love of Jesus Christ.”

We pray before every meeting.

In looking that stuff up ^^^ I did come across a section I hadn’t seen before that says, “Nope. No attempts to convert, no preaching!”

Since I don’t believe in God and have serious doubts that Jesus even existed, am I wrong for wanting to help?

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18 Answers

rebbel's avatar

Substitute God with Mother Nature.
And volunteer.

gorillapaws's avatar

I don’t see a problem with it. I wouldn’t have a problem helping a Buddhist charity, a Jewish one, a Muslim one or any other charity if they were doing good work and weren’t proselytizing.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I’m glad to be a part of it. I belong. I’ve been where so many of these families are coming from now. A good portion of them are single mom’s getting no help from the father of their children. I can really relate. I wish I’d known of this in the 90s. I’d have the house paid off by now.

janbb's avatar

I volunteered with them for a time and had no problem with it. Aside from anything else, Jimmy Carter exemplifies all that is best in Christianity.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

If they’re not proselytizing or demanding church attendance from the beneficiaries I would have no problem with it.

I’ve been to maybe two church services in my life, but I volunteered for years at a church food pantry/kitchen.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I agree with you about Carter, @janbb.

chyna's avatar

It would not be, but I would not say anything against Christians or religion like you do on here around other workers.

Dutchess_III's avatar

What makes you think I would, @chyna? I’m on the board, not in the construction side.

chyna's avatar

Because you do on Fluther.

Dutchess_III's avatar

That makes no sense. Habitat is not the place to air my religious opinions, or my ideas about evolution, or my sexual preferences or a thousand other things. Neither is the classroom. I find it very strange that you believe that just because I discuss certain things on Fluther, I would discuss them everywhere.

I KNOW you have a sense of decorum, @chyna. I would never suggest that you didn’t, either.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Something a little frustrating happened in our meeting yesterday. Someone asked if there were any workshops out there, or if any one ever gave any talks on the cycles of poverty, especially the generation cycles of poverty.They were asking so that people like, “us” could understand it and use that to help educate “our families” on how to get out.
Someone mentioned that there were a lot of misunderstandings and assumptions about poverty. I said there were a lot of stereotypes about it too. I got strong agreement on that.
But then one of the other board member proceeded to pull out a stereotype of what poor people do with that “government check” they get every month. “They just spend it.” He didn’t suggest what they spent it ON, which left everyone with the idea that he thinks they spend it on fun stuff.
I’d like to start some sort of program to educate people on what it’s like. How damn hard it is to get OUT, too. The further entrenched one is into the welfare system, the harder it is to get out. That’s kind of hard for people to understand.
I’m not very good at starting causes, though. :/

LuckyGuy's avatar

@Dutchess_III I wonder how many get into poverty as a result of an unwanted pregnancy? How many of them would have gotten out of poverty if they did not have that child? It seems like that info might help the next generation. We need to break the cycle.

To the board member who complained that poor people just spend it: Ask where he thinks it goes. It goes to a landlord, it goes to a grocery store, it goes to walmart, a car dealer charging usurious rates, an insurance company charging much higher than normal rates, it goes to court costs, etc. Pretty much all the money in that welfare check goes to property owners and businesses. Hmm… seems like they’re the ones on welfare. ;-)

Dutchess_III's avatar

Pregnancy, wanted or unwanted, doesn’t help, obviously. But neither does it help when the fathers run away from their responsibility. There are any number of things that can bring on poverty. I had 3 kids, all in wedlock, when I found my self divorced and alone with FOUR kids to take care of because the oldest came home from Seattle, where her dad had taken her, pregnant, at 16.

I didn’t push the issue with the board member. I’m a new comer. Plus I don’t know what his experiences in the past have been.

Zaku's avatar

I don’t think it’s hypocritical of you unless you are being hypocritical about it in some particular way.

But Christians will assign credit for the work you do to their religion rather than your non-denominational goodness.

Response moderated (Writing Standards)
Dutchess_III's avatar

I think they’re good about assigning the credit to the individuals. And, of course, they haven’t ask what my religious beliefs are and I haven’t shared them. Pretty sure I’m not the only agnostic / atheist in the group, though.

Pandora's avatar

No. Wanting to help is all that matters. Would you ask your doctor if he believed in God or not, or ask him not to pray before your surgery. Whatever gets you through the surgery is all that matters. The same for habitat for humanity. It doesn’t matter whether you believe or not. Plus they probably figure it doesn’t matter if you believe or not because they probably believe God moved your heart to help anyway. One of our favorite stories is the Good Samaritan.

Now if you become a preacher and pretend to be a believer to cash in, then that is another matter.
.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I had a doctor once who was very Catholic. Had Catholic icons all over his office. He was also the best doctor I’ve ever had and I missed him.

I once worked a temp position at a church as a secretary. They really wanted to hire me on full time, but the rules read that I had to be a church goer and witness when I could. I could have faked it perfectly, because I spent years in the church, but I just stayed quiet.

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