Glittering Follies (superficially attractive foolishness)

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Should Christians Pledge Fraternities/Sororities? Alton Jamison

"It matters not how straight the gate
How charged with punishment the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul"
Invictus-William Ernest Henley
 
I am very passionate about the hot button issues that affect Christians, especially when it comes to the age old question, "Should Christians pledge Fraternities/Sororities." Before you get defensive and say, "Well, my pastor is a Que or my grandma is an AKA..." listen to the conclusion of the matter. This blog post is NOT my attempt to sway you either way, but rather to spark a "healthy debate" from all sides of the spectrum. First, let me give you my background:
Background
In undergrad, I pledged (one of the divine 9) for approximately 10 weeks. My line brothers and I went on spring back and upon our return, we were anticipating completing our process. For those of you that have pledged, you know that it is a very "difficult and long" process. I was the ACE and I was definitely ready for the process to end. Long story short, during our break, someone was severely injured (pledging) at another chapter. As a result, the National Headquarters placed a nationwide suspension on all intake. What does that mean....in layman's terms, I just got yelled at and beat for the past 10 weeks for "no reason". In other words, we could not continue our process. Some say, it's crappy luck, some say it's God's will, I say, it sucks!
Now, I was a Christian since I was 8, so that clears up anyone who is wondering whether or not I was a Christian during that process. From that moment on, I went on a personal journey to figure out what was best for me. Of course, the organization was mentally calling my name and so I was torn on what to do. Go back and finish or move on! I eventually chose to move on. Several years later, I connected with six other brothers and developed a Christian fraternity on the same college campus.
I took the "bad parts" out of the pledge process and integrated into a new intake process for brothers desiring to become apart of a Christian fraternity.
Why A Christian Fraternity?
People say, "well, my organization was founded on Christian principals". Or, our founders were a pastor, etc. How many cults or even hate groups are founded on Christian principals? Tons. I am not implying that frat/soro. as such, but that is a very weak argument. An organization can not only be "founded", but it must be "grounded" on Christian principals. Good deeds on Friday, but a "Freak Neak" on Saturday is not being "grounded". Therefore, I wanted to establish something that stays true to the founders of the organization, not just in colors only. Plus, I wanted to cater to people that really wanted to take a stand and provide them with a choice, a good choice, versus the flipping a coin to see which "one of the 9 works for then".
10 Things To Consider Before Pledging a Fraternity/Sorority (if you are a Christian)
After these things, I will provide my overall stance and view...Please comment, I want to hear your feedback. These are in no particular order:
1) Will you be required to take any oaths to anyone or anything outside of God (Jesus Christ)?
2) Will you be expected to support activities that you typically wouldn't support?
3) What activities does the organization to do win people to Christ?
4) Are you only in it for letters, or are you really going to work once you get in?
5) Will you feel "complete" once you get in or cross? If so, why?
6) Is it your dream or a relative's dream?
7) What would happen if you never join? Will you feel incomplete?
8) Do you have a problem party hopping at the dance and then teaching bible study or going to church the next day?
9) Do you want people to first know you as a Christian or a part of an organization?
10) Did you really pray about it? And wait for an answer?
My Stance
I don't sway people either way. My story is different and everyone is different. I have great Christian friends that are in just about all the divine 9. I come to this conclusion, that God sees the big picture in our lives. In my case, I have been able to reach a different sect of brothers and different people because of my testimony and starting a Christian fraternity. My flesh will always say, "go back and finish", but my spirit says, "stay where you are and keep moving forward." As a Christian, I must follow my spirit. If you back me into a corner for a simple yes or no, then my answer is NO, you shouldn't. Why, because the bible talks about in James 5:12, "above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by earth, neither by any oath..." My argument is not that the pledging is bad, the colors or the organization itself, it's the oath that you say with your mouth, once you cross. You may say that it's a small things. But life and death is in the power of the tongue. We are "snared" by the words of our mouth. When we take oaths (whether its Freemasons, Divine 9, Eastern Star, etc), we are connecting ourselves to something other than our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. There you have it!
Write your thoughts...I want to hear your feedback. I hope you enjoyed the post.

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