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This is going to sound really dumb...

what is the difference between baptist/lutheran/presbysterian etc?

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Asked by jenellemarie at 3:35 PM on Mar. 30, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 17 (3,583 Credits)
Answers (9)
  • No idea. To someone who doesn't believe in religion they all look the same to me. But if anyone could clear this up without getting too "you're going to hell" on me, I'd love to know the answer too.

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:43 PM on Mar. 30, 2009

  • I agree. And what's Unitarian and what's Nondenominational and what's Interdenominational???????

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:45 PM on Mar. 30, 2009

  • I've actually attended all three churches, LOL. I grew up Presbyterian, worked for 6 years at a Lutheran school, and have attended my MIL's baptist church on several occasions. I have also been a member of a Methodist church and a Pentecostal church. There are only little differences in doctrine and tradition. Lutheran is closest to Catholic tradition, as far as doctrine and tradition are concerned. Presbyterian is a little less strict (as far as church service ritual), and baptist are even less than that. If you prefer a less structured service, then baptist is the way to go. If you want a LOT of structure, then go for the Lutheran. If you are a mid-range kinda gal, Presbyterian is a great one.

    My DH teases me and calls me a Methodpresbybapticostal.

    Answer by jennijune_21 at 3:45 PM on Mar. 30, 2009

  • Unitarian-Universalists are basically free-thinkers. They do not have a church creed or a set of beliefs. We attended a UU church for awhile and there were atheists, pagans, wiccans, liberal christians, moderate christians, agnostics... people of all different beliefs. It can be a great forum for learning but also extremely repressive (believe it or not). Our children participated in the religiou education program on Sunday morning and I have to say, there was very little religion, very little morals, and extremely little education. I was not happy. Those were the rudest, meanest, foulest children I have met (yes, there were children who were dropping the f word in front of their parents and the parents said nothing, at church, from a 9 year old!). Maybe other UU churches are better but I will not take the chance again.

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:37 PM on Mar. 30, 2009

  • Unitarians come out of the congregationals who came out of the puritan movement. Unitarians have moved to a more universalist tradition. I have to say that some of the more tolerant, respectful people I've known have been UUs- although anon to the north of me disagrees apparently.

    I'd also like to add that it's sometimes helpful to look into the background and leadership that each denomination came out of. For instance- if you're interested in the Presbyterians- look up Calvin. If you want to understand the methodists, look up Wesley.

    Answer by Raintree at 5:51 PM on Mar. 30, 2009

  • Not much of anything. They all spun off of Catholicism to varying degrees.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:25 PM on Mar. 30, 2009

  • They all have pet doctrines and take pride in calling themselves by their own names instead of simply following Christ Jesus. Nothing much different about any of them.

    Answer by lilhoney at 11:42 PM on Mar. 30, 2009

  • Thanks every one, I am not religious at all but would like to introduce my son to all ideas and religions without overwhelming him. Would it be dumb to try to explain all the different churches instead of just teaching him about christianity as a whole and then moving on to other religions?

    Answer by jenellemarie at 2:55 AM on Mar. 31, 2009

  • If you're just looking for basic information, check out or, you should find tons of information there. I like the way you're choosing to teach your son, we did the same thing with our children. The more knowledge they have the more power they wield.
    And there is no such thing as a dumb question, the dumb question is the one not asked :)

    Answer by krisr169 at 10:40 AM on Mar. 31, 2009

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