The Role of Nudists in the Church

This topic may sound like a total oxymoron, because the visible church is overwhelmingly textile. Pastors and priests are often called “men of the cloth“, and aside from a relative handful of nudist congregations, usually at nudist resorts, people wear clothes to church. The Church I am talking about, however, is the Church of Jesus Christ…the Church universal…the “holy catholic Church“, as it is stated in the Apostle’s Creed. Even as we are not recognized, and even shunned, by the visible church, I believe that we, as Christian naturists/nudists have a very important role in the spread of the kingdom of God, the Church of Jesus Christ.

To the typical church, the nudist resort, down the street or in the next county, might as well be an alien culture on a remote island. The only purpose the church would have for contacting nudists would be to condemn their lifestyle, and attempt to “convert” them to being textiles. Never mind that the Great Commission doesn’t include cultural conversion. It simply requires the church to make disciples of all nations, and that applies to all believers. “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit…” (Matthew 28:19)

I had an experience recently that brought this thought from “back-burner” to front and center. I found myself thrust into a ministry opportunity that no textile would have been able to perform, because it was at Cypress Cove Nudist Resort. The person who needed ministering to, although he wasn’t naked, was relaxing in the game room. The normal odds of him being there, me being there, and us meeting were somewhere between zero and none, except that, when God has work for us to do, He is quite able to “stack the deck“, and place us in the right place at the right time. We are never “off-duty” when it comes to the work of the Lord. Recent events have brought that fact home to me in a very dramatic way.

Divine appointment…

About once a month, I try to take a mini-nakation to Cypress Cove for a “mental-health day“. I have been under a lot of stress, and Cypress Cove is the one place I can de-stress and unwind. I usually go the first Saturday of the month, but the weather wasn’t very nice the first Saturday of May. However, the weather was beautiful the second Saturday…

The details of that encounter are immaterial. What does matter is that I was at the right place at the right time – God’s place and time, and was able to minister to a man who was hurting from the breakup of his marriage. God gave me the awesome and humbling privilege of ministering in His name, and that fellow found a listening ear, compassion and the love of Christ in an unlikely place.

My church…

There is only one person who knows for sure that I am a nudist – our senior pastor, and whether he accepts or rejects my lifestyle choice, he celebrated that ministry opportunity with me. He asked me to keep my lifestyle choice “mum” – ie. don’t advertise it, which I don’t. Even though I have been a part of that church for over sixteen months, he had no idea that I am a nudist until I told him. The only clue is the small AANR decal on the back window of my vehicle.

Our commission…

I don’t expect my church to “commission” me to be their missionary to nudists. That commission came from our Lord Himself: “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

Breaking that commission down: Jerusalem – our home community, Samaria – those whose lifestyle we don’t agree with, to the ends of the earth – those in foreign lands, or maybe just the next town. Nudists ARE the typical church’s “Samaria“, because we live a lifestyle contrary to what the church believes to be “appropriate“. Hence, if that “Samaria” is going to be reached with the Gospel, it will have to be Christian “Samaritans” who do it. We are the only ones who can bring the Good News of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ without ‘contaminating‘ it with ‘figleaves‘.

To a Jew, Samaritans were “unclean“, because they didn’t follow the ceremonial law to the letter. Does that sound familiar?

Our mission field…

In short, our mission field is anywhere we are, whether it is at a nude beach, a nudist resort, or even in a private gathering. There are a growing number of nudists who live full-time in a nudist resort, and the only times they get dressed and leave the resort are for necessary errands. The likelihood of them attending a local church, where they will be fed a ‘figleaf‘ gospel is slim to none. Very few local churches are involved in ministry to nearby nudist resorts, because they are unwilling to strip the ‘figleaves‘ out of their gospel, and unwilling to remove their own ‘figleaves‘. There are also far too few bodies of believers who regularly meet in nudist resorts.

The Christian Naturist Convocation (CNC) is actively involved in supporting bodies of believers at nudist resorts. They also hold two to three weekend retreats every year.

I have heard of one church which has a regular ministry to a nearby nudist resort, and that is a beginning. There are dozens more without a regular Christian witness.

As believers, we can bring the good news of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ to this sin-sick and dying world. We are in touch with the Living Water which truly satisfies, and the Bread that sustains spiritual life. Are we up to the task?

In Christ,

Steve

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14 thoughts on “The Role of Nudists in the Church

  1. Pingback: The Role of Nudists in the Church | simplenaturist

  2. You are talking to the subject I argue with myself constantly. How can a nudist / naturist serve Christ? Is being a nudist / naturist a “flesh” experience and therefore wrong? 1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. James 4:4b whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. And although bathing and swimming are not exhibitionist fleshly, certainly body painting and volleyball have a sexual connotation. Yet these people need a gospel witness. I am glad you served Jesus in a place where few people go.
    Remember also that my userid is secret to hide my identity and I suspect your is as well. Why, because of the possible persecution we will have in our Christian family. In Christ — a born again Independent Fundamental KJ Bible believer.

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    • Your arguments are based on the common misconceptions that: 1)our bodies are shameful, and 2)all nudity is sexual. Lust and sexualizing other people are “heart” problems, and have absolutely nothing to do with what we see. American Christians have been taught that all nudity is sexual, and thus if we see someone naked, we “have” to sexualize them. Those misconceptions are FALSE – LIES, lies from the pit of hell, foisted on us by the father of lies – Satan. Those lies look good and smell good to the church, but are still LIES. Read through my other posts, and then start reading through the other materials referenced on my Resources post, and I believe the answers you seek will pop out at you like beacons in the dark.

      Actually I am not trying to hide who I am, because I stand with and for the truth.

      Steve

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    • KS, I would like to encourage you to come to one of our events. If volleyball is sexual, then it is a sexual game whether you are nude or not. Nudity does not make something sexual any more than bathing suits or a Tuxedo. James Bond was always considered as “sexual” and most of the time he is wearing a very expensive suit or a Tux. What makes one sexual is the eye of the beholder. It is in our minds and spirit that changes what we see into what it is not. So come to one of our events, in this case, it is in Tennessee this year. Visit our website for details and my facebook page “boyd allen” and look up “boyd allens christian naturism” in google.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Adding to this comment, in response to our “mission”, it was said at our first CNC gathering in 2007, “Where Christ sent the church to Jerusalem, Samaria and to the ends of the earth, where the modern church calls ‘the ends of the earth’, we call ‘Our Jerusalem’.”

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  3. CNC is having only one event this year (2014) but we believe it will be a big one. We hope that many will come to this event so we can expand and have more next year! “The harvest is white, but the laborers are few.” We cannot let our fears hold us back. My wife and I insisted on time off (which is needed anyway) from our jobs (even my new job which I said I need to take the time during my interview) so we can do this. We didn’t mention “naturism” but a Christian retreat which we are the leaders of and have to be there. It is that important to us. There is lots to do and this mission is not ours alone. We are also preparing the resorts for Allen Parker, who wants to help establish churches in the resorts. (We don’t do that part). Our part is to energize and recapture the first love of Christianity and bring the Christians out from behind the fig leaves and bushes of the resorts. They may be nude, but they are still hiding. Come out, come out, from wherever you are.

    ~Boyd “Live Nude and Prosper” Allen

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  4. In the UK we have the Christian Naturist Fellowship. We meet at Orpington the first weekend in August (as well as other places) and we have a quarterly newsletter.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Pingback: The Role of Nudists in the Church | Struggles of a Christian Naturist | View from a grassey knoll

  6. Pingback: The Role of Nudists in the Church | N D S T . C O

  7. thanks for sharing. At this point I would say most of my close friends and acquaintances even those thru church know about my naked habits and are supportive about too. Years ago I was telling a friend about my naked vacation in the Caribbean, we were standing in the sanctuary while we chatted. She told me that she could not ever go to one since she did not have a ‘good body’. Besides the fact that for a woman her age she had a very nice body, I told her to look around , that the same cross section of people she saw in church would be at a nude beach. My little lesson as to what nudism is about.

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    • Americans, particularly women, are very image-conscious, and are horrified at the thought of someone seeing them without their “lifters”, “firmers”, “shapers” and “slimmers”. In spite of the evidence linking bras to breast cancer, and having had breast cancer at 21, it took my neighbor-gal, who is 48, having gallbladder surgery and being unable to wear a REAL bra for several months before she was finally able to kick her bra-compulsion. She is too “modest” to ever become a nudist, and it has taken her a while to accept that it is “okay” for me to be a nudist. Her attitude towards my nudism has gone from “That is just plain WRONG” to “Have fun” when I tell her I am going to Cypress Cove.

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