Okolona Christian Church is a large church in southern Louisville, Kentucky. My family and I joined the church and regularly attended services for two years. When I recently concluded I was spending my Sundays worshiping a nonexistent entity, I decided to stop attending services. The following is an insider’s review of the Church and its practices.
The ministers at Okolona are sincere and charismatic. I have spoken with each of them, in private and at length about the various concerns I had leading to my deconversion. Although I liked them all personally, none of them had any answers to the dozens of questions and doubts that had accumulated in my (rational) mind. They listened to my questions and attempted some half-hearted responses, but mostly they just nodded like they had heard my concerns many times before.
I asked them how they can worship a God who purportedly kills children with bears (King James Version, 2 Kings 2:23-24) or who kills seventy people just for looking at the Ark of the Covenant (King James Version, 1 Samuel 6:19) or who commands his people to kill male children and enslave female children (King James Version, Numbers 31:17).
Of course God did not do any of these things because the Bible is a work of fiction, but the ministers have to defend these accounts because they believe them to be historical fact. I would get responses like, “We cannot question God’s motives” or “Times were different then.” You can decide for yourself whether those types of responses are adequate to justify mass murder.
Facilities and Services
The facilities at Okolona are very nice. Worship services included very catchy contemporary Christian music from a live band and singers. The music minister is a very talented guy. The songs that started each service were a high point for me and my wife. In addition to the music, Okolona offers awesome amenities like on-site daycare and separate services for middle school and high school kids.
I helped teach Sunday School for elementary school age children. Red flags flew from the beginning, when the children’s director asked me if I believed in a literal translation of Genesis. Essentially, she was asking me if I thought: 1) the cosmos was created in six twenty-four hour periods, 2) the Earth existed before the sun and every other star in the cosmos, and 3) that all animals existed at exactly the same time.
Despite my uneasiness, I assisted with Sunday School for three months. We kept the kids busy with projects like wrapping them up like Lazarus mummies. The classroom was neat and well-stocked, and it was pretty fun working with the kids.
Okolona Christian Church does a lot of good work for the community. My favorite moment was at Thanksgiving when the church supplied more than 250 local families with full Thanksgiving dinners. My wife and I contributed both our time and money to the cause, and we felt very fortunate that we were in a position to help.
Okolona Christian Church is full of good people seeking the company of other good people to contribute to our community and make a difference. Unfortunately, these people also believe in a lot of ridiculous stuff that I could not accept as a rational human being. Still, if you are interested in visiting the church, you can find it at 10801 Faithful Way, Louisville, Kentucky, 40229. The main telephone number is 502-962-6500.
My personal experience
Okolona Christian Church, www.okolonacc.org