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Question about moving to Charlotte area

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Question about moving to Charlotte area

We are considering moving to Charlotte but I'm concerned about living in the bible belt. We do not go to church and are socially liberal. After seeing all of the mega-churches down there I'm worried we won't find like-minded people. I am cool with other people doing what works for them but I don't want people breathing fire and brimstone down my neck. Will my kids be ostracized for not attending a conservative church? Thanks for any input.

southcarolina
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1. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

to Hiker7903 I just copied and pasted this from a prior post...hope this helps you out.

Posted on: 8:04 pm, May 25, 2005 Report inappropriate post

to mcgraw: your very welcome. Now I am only speaking of the area I live in and I can promise you that if you are not religious it is not a problem at all. Tega Cay and Fort Mill are small towns yet downtown Charlotte is only a 20 minute drive. What this adds to the mix is a lot of folks that are transplants from different parts of the country. I have met just as many people from out of state as I have Carolina natives. Yes I can say that religion does play a bigger part here than say what it was in CA. I can also tell you that people will invite you to visit their church...if you go that's great if not...that's fine too...and this is where it stops. There is no badgering. When we first moved here my neighbor (who is a native) explained to us what the people were like around here. She said: "We will not come over to your house and knock on the door to visit but if we do see you outside we will smile, wave and chat if there's time"...along with "if you should ever need anything the people around here will help you any way we can at the drop of a hat" Now I have been here a little over a year and I can tell you that my mouth has dropped open on more than one or two occasions with what people do for each other here. I have seen how a neighbor hurt his back, other neighbors pitched in and mowed his lawn until he was feeling better. Or when a family of 7 had their house burn down. Within minutes the family was offered temporary housing and neighbors were bringing over donations, and fundraisers were being set into motion. So I guess what I am trying to tell you is yes you will fit in just fine here if you are friendly yet private...we are too and its working out great for us! Take care

Charlotte, North...
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2. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

What "tega cay" writes is what I've found to be true my entire life.

I am a native and I am sorry that so many people outside of the south have such a wrong view of life here. (no wonder our country is so polarized, there seems to be very little knowledge or understanding of other people's views in other areas of the country) I grew up in one of the small towns in southeast Mecklenburg county, and am a Christian. (although we don't attend church regularly;as I tell my kids, "we are Christians, not necessarily "Churchians"") During my lifetime, yes I have run into the "fire and brimstone" type Christians, but rarely. They make the majority of us feel uneasy too. The church that I grew up in is one of the oldest in Mecklenburg county (dating back before the Revolutionary War) and is at least "moderate" if not a bit liberal on social views as well as enviromental issues. I along with most people I grew up with were taught/believe that "God is Love". (most churches here are like this, not "fire and brimstone") (It is somewhat social issues, but mostly economic issues, and size and role of federal government that have many of us voting more conservative in federal government elections.)

The great majority of people here native or not, are kind, thoughtful, loving people regardless of religious affiliation (or lack of relgious affiliation). You will also find that the majority of us are also very tolerate and openminded.

In the public schools your kids will be welcomed and will fit right in; the most they might hear from the few "fire and brimstone" types is that Harry Potter is Satan! (There always seems to be one child in my kids classes each year that spouts that. They are the ones if any, who are ostracized!) To me that issue has been a great conversation starter at home to discuss what we do believe. (and what wonderful moral traits Harry Potter does have)

In the 10 years that I have been involved at my kids schools there has only been once where we had a parent come before the principal and PTO board and demand that her very negative, narrow minded beliefs change policy at the school. She demanded that Halloween not be celebrated. (it is the devil's holiday) She was kindly but firmly told that the school would continue to host Halloween parties, however she was free to keep her children at home that day and their absence would be excused due to religious reasons.

As for "Mega Churches" there are a few, but they have no influence on other's daily life here. The way you put it, it sounds like you've been told that they are on every street corner and run the city? I could count all the "mega churches" that I know of on one hand.

If you do chose to move here you will be welcomed. You will find the great majority of us are quite openminded, and appreciate people who come openminded about life here.

Best Wishes!

Timbuktu, Mali
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3. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

18 months ago we moved to Charlotte from the Midwest. Christianity and the church you attend are a much bigger issue here than anywhere else I have lived.

Like yourself, we're Liberals and are in the minority. That being said, politics and religion are not big topics of everyday discussion.

We moved into a new neighborhood in SE Charlotte with a very diverse neighborhood. Since many of us are not from the South, we've established some great friends. FYI, our children have good friends of all faiths...Christian, Jewsih, Muslim, etc. and I have never heard of any problems.

There's room enough for everyone even if you don't vote Republican, like country music, or follow NASCAR!

NC
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4. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

Hi. I would be considered by many to be a fundamentalist, conservative Christian. I was born and raised in this area. May I assure you that we are not beasts. You are certainly welcomed here and we will not make your life miserable. If you mistake a kind invitation to our church as badgering, may I apologize in advance. Best wishes and I trust you will enjoy living in area!

NC
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5. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

OH - BTW - if I were moving to Vermont, I might be tempted to make such a post on their forum out of fear of their religious/political leanings as well - I certainly understand! LOL.

Charlotte, North...
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6. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

The more posts I read from "open-minded liberals" the more I begin to believe that many are anything but! It seems that it is not only people who don't know the area, but also many who have moved here and should know better if they'd give MOST natives in the community a chance, but do not; they just hold on to untrue stereotypes:

"Since many of us are not from the South, we've established some great friends. FYI, our children have good friends of all faiths...Christian, Jewsih, Muslim, etc. and I have never heard of any problems"

“There's room enough for everyone even if you don't vote Republican, like country music, or follow NASCAR!”

In another topic discussing the same issues, a self described "liberal" prides herself in being able to surround herself in a neighborhood full of liberals here in the south. What about being "tolerant" and "accepting of others", "avoid stereotyping others" "all peoples living in harmony", and all the other stuff liberals always spout?

The truth is: The largest market for country music is New York City! The largest market for NASCAR is in California; and if you will look back throughout North Carolina's state and local election history you will find more Democrats than Republicans have held offices!!! (hmm, if only the DNC would come up with a strong candidate...)

I was born and raised here and I very strongly dislike Country Music, I don’t follow NASCAR, and I study and research issues and vote for whichever candidate I feel will do the best job, regardless of party affiliation! -And no, I am not in the minority. ( well maybe I am in regards to country music)

Oh, by the way, among my 15 year old daughter’s best friends, two are Buddhists, one is Hindu, one is Cabalist, two are Christian, and one is Mormon. When they gather at our house we jokingly call it a meeting of the “United Nations”. We southern Christians also allowed our daughter to spend 2 weeks this summer in an Asian country with a Buddhist family!! She even went to a few temples!!! I’m surprised we haven’t been kicked out of our church, out of town; out of the state, and out of the south!!!! LOL!!!

Yes, you will be welcome here, just make sure it isn't you who is closeminded.... How boring life would be if we surrounded ourselves with only "like-minded" people.

Just remember, actions speak louder than words!

Best Wishes!

NC
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7. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

Touche' Mickey! Thanks!

florida
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8. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

We just moved here a couple ofmonths ago and we hadsimilar concerns.Fact is that I have had no problems at all.People here are so nice and make you feel wellcome.We are from New Yorkand not christian so you can imagine our concern.You will love Charlotte.Its a legitimate concern, but again I would not be concerned.What you will notice is some of the best people you will ever meet.

NC
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9. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

The thing that people don't realize is that TRUE Christianity means loving people - your neighbor as yourself. I know a lot of people who do that! :)

Charlotte, North...
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10. Re: Question about moving to Charlotte area

Bud is absolutely right, that's why those new to the community who have given locals a chance, find that for the most part we are kind, loving people, who only want to help our new neighbors feel welcome. (this is not a "put on"- we are sincere) There are those who do go overboard forcing themselves and their beliefs upon others, but they are few and far between. (and although their intentions are probably good, I believe they are sadly misguided)

Church has always been an important part of life here and if you look back into southern history you will see why. Most people back in our history lived on very large farms and never saw anyone outside of their family, and/or farm hands during the week. On Sunday everyone got dressed up and went to church. Yes, they worshiped but this was also their only time to socialize. Most families would bring picnic lunches and spend the afternoon socializing with friends and family. This tradition has been passed down through the years. (although the "dress up" part has for the most part been dropped in recent years.) The church here in the south remains an important part of many people's social lives. The church I grew up in still does the after church picnic once a month it is just a good time eating (great old family recipes) and catching up with friends that you don't get to see often. Except for the prayer before the meal, our Christian beliefs are not preached or even mentioned. It is just a gathering of friends. Many people from all over the country who have moved into that community have joined in and become an active member of this church family; the doors are open to everyone.

When someone invites a new neighbor to visit their church, they are not trying to pressure them into taking on their beliefs, it is just a simple "welcome" to the neighborhood, and they want to help you to feel part of the community. It never crosses most people's minds that anyone would find such an invitation offensive. A simple "thank you for the invitation, however I must decline" or simplier "no thank you" is all that you need to say.

I grew up (as many of us did) with friends of different faiths, and enjoyed meeting their families and learning about their beliefs. I was always free to do that. It also helped me to explore and define what I believe. There's no harm learning about what others believe, in fact I think it helps us to better understand each other.

As I said before, you will find most of us southerners (no matter what our religious beliefs are or aren't) are friendly and (for the most part) openminded.

We would appreciate our new neighbors being friendly and openminded toward us as well.

Again, Best Wishes to all!