The more things change the more they stay the same.
I picked up an old novel off the return shelves at the library. I just now looked at a review of it that described it as having too little story and too much lecture. Sort of like some more recent books I have read.
Sure enough, it starts off with some startling "facts" coming from the lips of one of the characters:"Our fathers worshiped God. Christianity grew from that worship as a tree grows from its roots, until in our generation it is bearing its legitimate fruit -- good works. Can anyone question that the marvelous growth of interest in charities and social-welfare work of every kind in this generation is the direct result of the Christianity of our fathers? But while we today are harvesting these fruits of Christianity, like the miserable farmers of life that we are, we are neglecting the tree which produces them. With no thought of the future we are permitting the roots of our religion to die for want of intelligent cultivation."Later, the father in the story encourages his daughter to get back into church involvement. She responds:
"Oh, Daddy dear, don't make me laugh! You are so old-fashioned, and I love you for it. But for Jack and me and our crowd the Church is simply impossible. It just doesn't fit into our lives anywhere... What right has the Church to expect my generation to hang on to all the denominational bunk that you and mother, when you were young, took from your preachers as the one and only simon pure, eighteen-carat, A-1 religion? ... As a matter of fact, Daddy dear, you don't believe half that's in our church creed yourself. And you know darned well that you don't really get any kick out of the antediluvian drivel that Parson Coleman calls a sermon. Why, if that reverend fraud should happen to have a real honest-to-goodness thought he wouldn't dare mention it for fear some of his denominational bosses might hear about it and fire him."Does anyone care to try to put a date on this? It's obviously not recent, but it is rather amusing in that the laments sound strikingly familiar.