Prompted by the oft-stated explanation (excuse?) for not joining a worshipping community, "I'm spiritual but not religious," the Washington Post's "On Faith" takes on the question:
Spiritual but not religious?
From "On Faith" at the Washington Post online
Author Anne Rice said last week that she was 'quitting Christianity:' The once-lapsed Catholic wrote that she was could no longer accept her religion's teachings on homosexuality, feminism, politics and birth control.
"In the name of Christ, I quit Christianity and being Christian," Rice announced on her facebook page.
Can you leave religion and keep Christ? Can you be spiritual without being religious?
. . .
"Christian" belongs to Christ
Can Anne Rice be spiritual without religion? Sure. When the church lost its purity under Rome, the ascetics went out into the desert to forge their relationships with God more or less alone. Jesus withdrew in order to pray. However, he did not stay there. And when the people of Jerusalem went astray, Jesus did not forsake the temple. He threw the moneychangers out.