By Désirée Nothnagel
When a good friend of mine told me about her experiences she made in Uganda working as a volunteer in an orphanage, we somehow came to the point at which she described a service she attended in the church of the so called “Born Agains”. She accompanied a colleague, being more curious than earnestly interested. What she talked about really astonished me. So I still imagine her, sitting in this church, slightly confused, in between all theose people cheering and applauding to the preacher man who stands on the stage waving about with his hands in heat.
“Jesus loves you and he will forgive all the sins you have committed in your life, if you are born again!” What does that mean, to be “born again?” I was wondering and started research on the internet. Besides many articles which mention the words brain wash, sect and rip-off, I also found some information who explained the thoughts behind the expression “born again” that comes from the New Testament and is a form of Christianity which advocates the thought of being born again in a way which is certainly not physical, but indeed spiritual.
“You must be born again in the spirit!” preaches a man in his uploaded YouTube video under the username MYSOULREFUGE, “and you will be transferred from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of the light of God”. Furthermore, he says that you won’t experience salvation on earth, if you are not enlightened by the message of God. So I assume, that this man has found, what he is preaching to us. He is born again in the spirit and tries to tell us, that this is the only way to get rid of our very own sins and start a live in epiphany. As someone who was not raised in a religious way, his message did not really leave any feeling of need for salvation in my chest. This, I guess, to his disappointment.
I also found articles about preacher men who chased away the devil out of a believer’s body. Like my friend told me, the whole procedure starts with tears running down the sinner’s cheeks and his body begins to shake, as if an evil force fought against the presence of God. People fall down on the floor, screaming and whining, mothers let their babies fall out of their arms, because Satan occupied their soul. After my friend picked up a woman’s crying baby, she watched the preacher man pulling this woman onto the stage and screaming “Let go of her, Devil!”. Furthermore, she explained that in every service she attended, a several times going round collection box was a present phenomenon. “Empty your pockets”. Of course, the money was used for charity and probably other good causes, but I could not ignore the notion of people living in obviously material modesty that put their last banknote in the collection box hoping that “soon, their day will come”. And exactly this was preached, when my friend accompanied her colleague to church. She listened to enlightened people who told their story on the stage and asserted that they never have stopped believing and praying and suddenly it was like a miracle, something good happened to them. “So empty your pockets”. I wondered how much money a single person put in this collection box, until his or her day came.