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August 4th, 2011
04:00 AM ET

Bull riding for Jesus

By Ken Tuohey, CNN

Carroll County, Maryland (CNN) -Jon Bisset, who is one part cowboy and one part Christian missionary, is the owner of River Valley Ranch in Carroll County, Maryland.

It is a family business. Bisset's grandfather started the ranch after immigrating to the United States from Scotland in the 1920s, he said.

"He always had a fondness for the American cowboy, and he was a minister down in Baltimore city," Bisset said. "He saw a lot of kids getting in trouble during the summer time and thought this might be an opportunity to reach out to the kids of Baltimore city in a unique way."

So his grandfather started RVR, the first dude ranch on the East Coast, reaching out with the gospel to kids who ordinarily wouldn't step foot in a church, Bisset said.

His grandfather's legacy continues today at the ranch, where they offer a Christian-themed summer camp, rodeos, horseback riding and even bull riding.

The ranch is not formally tied to any denomination or church. On its website it calls itself an "organization in the evangelical Christian tradition." It also notes that its summer camps "present the simple message of the Gospel as found in the Bible and teach Christian values without promoting nor condemning any denomination or church."

"You won't see too many cowboys that when you call for a word of prayer, don't come around and circle up," said Matt Schock, RVR's rodeo coordinator. That could be because these cowboys are getting ready to strap themselves onto the back of a snarling three-quarter-ton horned bull that could kill them in any number of ways.

Schock takes care of the bulls on the ranch, oversees the rodeos and leads Thursday night bull riding practice sessions. He also makes sure that everyone maintains a Christian environment.

On this night, as Schock rounded the bulls up into the corrals, the cowboys prepared their gear.

Clad in denim and leather, the riders donned cowboy hats and boots, and readied their ropes like soldiers preparing for battle.

When Schock called them over to gather for a word of prayer, everyone joined in. After seeing the size of the immense bovines they were up against, it was easy to see why.

"These bulls are bred to buck," Schock said. "They weigh 16, 17 hundred pounds. You can't make them do anything they don't want to do."

One big tan bull slammed his head against the cage, knocking in the steel dividing door that kept him in his pen. Then he jumped in the air and smacked a camera before it could be pulled out of the way.

"It's the world's most dangerous sport for a reason. You get on that bull, you have a good shot at dying," Schock said.

Penned behind a gate, the bulls would charge like a derailed locomotive, showing no mercy as their riders tried to get settled. And once the bulls were released, the riders were tossed off like rag dolls.

The cowboys would amble to their feet, brush themselves off and get ready to ride again.

"You could go out and get your head stepped on and die like that," Schock said as he snapped his fingers. "(When) you stand before the Lord and finding out where you go ... that's what's important right there."

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity

soundoff (521 Responses)
  1. Bo

    ********************************************************************************************************************** @Know What: Evidently I didn't make my point clear. The point I was trying to make is how could have these people have known these astrnomical facts if they were not some how revieled to them by a God? I, by faith, believe that onlly God knew these things and revield them to Job (and Moses who later wrote the book of Job) How would you account for these people knowing these astronomical facts that were not proved until centuries later? ********************************************************************************

    August 5, 2011 at 9:55 am |
    • BRC

      Bo,
      I think he was pointing out that it is not that strong of a point. It doesn't require any divine information to see that there is a cluster of stars and call it the Pleides, nor it required for observing Orion's belt. They were two well known, clearly identifiable, and long named constalations. Noone at the time knew anything more about, but nothing more is required. Your chosen passage simply uses there names, because they were well known. It basically said, "there are stars you can see, but that you could not effect, and God can". It did nothing to describe any actions that any supernatural being was exerting on either of the two formations.
      Also, just as a bonus, Moses didn't write Job. Considering Job's story is based well after the death of Moses (which oddly enough happens beofer the end of the first 5 books, yet he's credited with being the author... always found that odd).

      August 5, 2011 at 10:17 am |
    • Bo is Stunningly Stupid

      The astronomical "facts" to which you refer are obvious by looking up at the sky. The fact that they are NOT facts comes from advanced astronomy. God should have known what the facts really were, but did not.

      August 5, 2011 at 10:19 am |
    • Know What

      Bo,

      Two ancient Hebrew words, kesil and kimah, have been translated as Orion and Pleiades. Kesil seems to fit the looks of Orion, but there are disputes as to whether kimah refers to what we call the Pleiades.

      Orion looks like a "belt" from Earth (and perhaps from a few other viewing points around the universe), but in fact the stars do not sit next to each other in space, but are quite far apart. "God" did not 'reveal' that fact at all. Hmmmm.

      The ancient, primitive people were fascinated by the stars. They had a lot of time to sit around and observe them, wonder about them and they made up a lot of fantasy stories about them, along with some valid uses for navigation and such. Key words: Observation and Fantasy.

      August 5, 2011 at 1:09 pm |
    • Know What

      p.s. Bo, it would be helpful if you could use the "Reply" function. I know that sometimes it breaks, but it seems to be working on this board, thus far. Your responses are often missed because they are presented as new posts... far flung from the original. In case you don't know how to do it - just click "Reply" under your first post right here in this section - the one that begins with "********@spiffy

      August 5, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
    • Know What

      pps: aargh, sorry - change that original post line to "**********@Know What"

      August 5, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  2. challenge

    Atheists:

    When is the last time any one who called yourself an Atheist here gave your time or money to charitable causes?

    You may not beleive in GOD, but don't tell us you were created without a conscience.

    for starters help the people in somalia are dying of starvation

    August 5, 2011 at 9:00 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      For starters, how about helping your own neighbours?
      If you're not physically heading down to Somalia, your contribution will be neglibible.
      Donating a few dollars to Christian Children's Fund or whatever equivalent charity is nothing more than assuaging your guilt.
      It does as much for feeding the starving as buying carbon credits does for the environment.

      August 5, 2011 at 9:13 am |
    • Frogist

      @challenge:
      I'm sorry but do you really believe that an atheist will not do things for charity? Non-believers are still human you know! We still have hearts and compassion. Believers have not cornered the market on humanity. And yes, non-believers do contribute to charity. Not only in far off places like African countries but also in our backyards.
      Maybe instead of pointing at the atheists in your midst, you might want to start with the believers who think gov't funded programs that aid the sick and poor should be done away with because it's not "real" charity. I'm sure the ones who use those programs will greatly appreciate the distinction when they can no longer afford their food or child care.

      August 5, 2011 at 9:26 am |
    • tallulah13

      I give to the local food bank because I know it will get to people who need it.

      August 5, 2011 at 10:14 am |
    • challenge

      Point taken that charity begins at home and it begins in your own backyard, the statistics of contribution an Atheist makes to a Theist is pitifully woeful and begs your attention.

      So what if Theists are donating for causes to assuage their guilt, I don't beleive that is the case, for arguments sake even if they are , they are still helping someone in need. We are not God's to be selfless so what if an act of kindness is for the sake of making you feel good.
      What is wrong in feeling good about yourself after an act of kindness.? It is the natural outcome of someone who has reached out to a suffering soul.

      Let's all do good and feel good, that generates a lot more positive energy which this world needs .

      On the other hand your posts have nothing positive to say, your attack on people and making fun of those who are reaching out to needy kids (case in point this blog) is useless/futile and is helping no cause.

      August 5, 2011 at 10:16 am |
    • The Bobinator

      > When is the last time any one who called yourself an Atheist here gave your time or money to charitable causes?

      About two days ago. And I did so because I was directed to do so. I did so because I thought it was the right thing to do.

      > You may not beleive in GOD, but don't tell us you were created without a conscience.

      Umm, we can in fact have a conscience without God. Evolutionary biology has made many complicated behavioural modifications to many different species on this planet. Why couldn't we have evolved a conscience out of necessity for living in a successful society?

      > for starters help the people in somalia are dying of starvation

      You can't help certain people based on the situation. Sending money blindly doesn't solve the problem. The reality is that part of the problem is due to overpopulation. Of course, this would be helped if a certain religion taught that using condoms was wrong.

      Perhaps we can start helping the world by having people make decisions based on rational thinking rather then on what they believe is true.

      August 5, 2011 at 10:17 am |
    • The Bobinator

      > Point taken that charity begins at home and it begins in your own backyard, the statistics of contribution an Atheist makes to a Theist is pitifully woeful and begs your attention.

      Where did you see this statistic. It sounds made up.

      What isn't made up though is that atheists per person are less likely to commit crime, less likely to have an abortion and less likey to divorce their spouse.

      Plus, I question whether your giving is philanthropic. You're getting something out of it. It's more like buying your way to heaven or doing a favour for Jesus "For what you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me."

      August 5, 2011 at 10:22 am |
    • Slaying another bigotted stereotype against atheists

      Levels of charitable donation are basically the same between atheists and religious people. The only time religion gives more is when the giver receives some recognition/status within his church in return – when they are buying status, which is not really charity.

      The main difference is that atheists expect no divine reward; they purely do it for the good of their fellow human. Religious people believe they are buying their way to heaven by doing it, and if you expect to receive something in return for your efforts, what you are doing is not charity.

      August 5, 2011 at 10:26 am |
    • challenge

      Here are the statistics

      regards to atheism and uncharitableness, charitable giving by atheists and agnostics in America is significantly less than by theists, according to a study by the Barna Group:

      “ The typical no-faith American donated just $200 in 2006, which is more than seven times less than the amount contributed by the prototypical active-faith adult ($1500). Even when church-based giving is subtracted from the equation, active-faith adults donated twice as many dollars last year as did atheists and agnostics. In fact, while just 7% of active-faith adults failed to contribute any personal funds in 2006, that compares with 22% among the no-faith adults.[

      August 5, 2011 at 10:28 am |
    • J.W

      I remember being at a Lutheran Bible study and the study was to show how without God people have no motivation to do anything good. This is one reason why I am no longer Lutheran.

      August 5, 2011 at 10:30 am |
    • J.W

      I just think that some things should be attributed to the person themselves. I give some to my church and some to a separate charily, as well as doing some volunteer work. I dont do any of those things because I think it will help me to get to heaven. I give to the church because I like it there and the money helps the church to function, I give to charity and volunteer to help other people because that is what I should do.

      August 5, 2011 at 10:36 am |
    • tallulah13

      Challenge: Please cite a neutral source for your information. Getting statistics from a group with a christian bias is equivalent to me citing statistics from an atheist poll. Neutrality is the key to truth.

      August 5, 2011 at 10:37 am |
    • J.W

      http://www.atheismsucks.com says that Christians give more to charity. I think that is a neutral source.

      August 5, 2011 at 11:08 am |
    • J.W

      http://www.hoover.org/publications/policy-review/article/6577 I did find this but it is from 2003

      August 5, 2011 at 11:15 am |
    • Qwerty Elemeno

      The Barna Group statistics are very misleading: all donations to church are considered charitable donation. The church itself keeps most of the money for itself. Very little of that money goes on to assist the needy. Moreover, the giver is tacitly compelled to donate, and often expects status within his church in return. Finally, the average amount given falsely implies that the average person gives that much – a few rich people who make large donations to commemorate themselves skew the results, like the average wage in the NBA is way above what most NBA players receive.

      The problem with surveys such as Barna and Gallup do is that the question itself creates the illusion of giving an answer, but the question asked is usually very misleading and ignores many important factors. Pollsters are not very good at understanding the complexities, and there really os no reward for them to even bother with them.

      August 5, 2011 at 11:16 am |
    • JW is a nincompoop

      JW thinks atheismsucks.com is a neutral source.

      August 5, 2011 at 11:22 am |
    • J.W

      But if you are going to say a few rich people skew the average then as far as average atheist giving you would have to take the billions that Bill Gates donated into account since he is an atheist. And you can argue that his was for status too, to create goodwill for his company.

      August 5, 2011 at 11:24 am |
    • J.W

      LOL is that Laughing under that name.

      August 5, 2011 at 11:25 am |
    • Civiloutside

      Can we please agree that any "when I give charity I'm better than you because I do it for better reasons" conversation is utterly pointless? None of us know each other's true motivations, and so long as people get the help they need does it really even matter?

      August 5, 2011 at 11:49 am |
    • Laughing

      @J.W

      Honestly, wasn't me, I try to stick with my handle, still pretty funny joke though, http://www.atheismsucks.com.....classic netural source, does that go along with your list of http://www.atheistsgoingtohe.ll.com and http://www.godhatesatheists.com?

      August 5, 2011 at 11:53 am |
    • J.W

      LoL I actually typed into google :"do Christians give more than atheists to charity" and the Atheismsucks.com was one of the first that came up

      August 5, 2011 at 12:05 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      > The typical no-faith American donated just $200 in 2006, which is more than seven times less than the amount contributed by the prototypical active-faith adult ($1500). Even when church-based giving is subtracted from the equation, active-faith adults donated twice as many dollars last year as did atheists and agnostics. In fact, while just 7% of active-faith adults failed to contribute any personal funds in 2006, that compares with 22% among the no-faith adults.

      Clearly you didn't undestand me when I asked you for where this came from. I'm not asking you to retype what you googled. I'm asking for your source. And even if it is true, so what?

      Let's look at these US prison statistics...

      Catholic 29267 39.164%
      Protestant 26162 35.008%

      This represents about 74% of the prison population, which is very close to the US Christian Population of about 80%. This gives you a ratio of about 0.925

      Atheist 156 0.209%

      So, atheists or non believers are about 9% of the US population, so this ratio is .023.

      So if we employ your "logic" (divide .925 by .023) atheists are 40, yes 40 times less likely to commit a crime then a Christian. Isn't that interesting. These numbers were pulled from 2006 US prison statistics I believe and you can google for confirmation. Probably putting in one the numbers I've listed will let you google it. 🙂

      Yeah, so how do you explain this? I'd take people being uncharitable before criminals any day of the week.

      August 5, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      > Point taken that charity begins at home and it begins in your own backyard, the statistics of contribution an Atheist makes to a Theist is pitifully woeful and begs your attention.

      And even if this is true, certain people being more charitable has absolutely nothing to do with the validity of the claims being made by that group.

      I think you need to think through your argument. 😛

      August 5, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      > When is the last time any one who called yourself an Atheist here gave your time or money to charitable causes?

      Just now. I'm taking time out of my day to educate you on your silly and pointless arguments. You're welcome.

      August 5, 2011 at 1:20 pm |
    • Judge Moody

      I have seen the arguments for Charitable giving and do not find Atheists substantiating their claims they are charitable.
      I hereby order Christians are the most giving of people.
      Case Closed!!
      Christians your calling is a high calling continue to do good and help humanity! May God so help you...
      To the atheists-
      your wordy rumblings and pointless quarelling is intellectually deprecating.
      I sentence you and your like to your wordy meaningless rumblings for the rest of your lives.

      August 5, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Somalia is starving because Jesus hates black Muslims.

      They remind him of his father

      August 5, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
    • LinCA

      @The Bobinator

      You said "Let's look at these US prison statistics...
      Catholic 29267 39.164%
      Protestant 26162 35.008%
      This represents about 74% of the prison population, which is very close to the US Christian Population of about 80%. This gives you a ratio of about 0.925
      Atheist 156 0.209%
      So, atheists or non believers are about 9% of the US population, so this ratio is .023.
      So if we employ your "logic" (divide .925 by .023) atheists are 40, yes 40 times less likely to commit a crime then a Christian.
      "

      Are you sure that doesn't just mean that they are 40 times less likely to get incarcerated?

      I'm guessing it is a combination of them being less likely to commit crimes AND being smarter at evading capture/conviction. 😉

      August 6, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  3. TruthMatters

    Christians should net engage in unnecessarily dangerous sports.

    August 5, 2011 at 4:35 am |
    • TruthMatters

      I mean "should not."

      August 5, 2011 at 4:36 am |
    • herbert juarez

      including horseshoes(1st remove from the horse)and tiddly winks (you could put out an eye)

      August 5, 2011 at 8:32 am |
  4. Bibletruth

    "It's the world's most dangerous sport for a reason. You get on that bull, you have a good shot at dying" ....
    You get on that Bull and your sinning against God. Our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. We are to take good care of our bodies, in cleanliness, proper diet, in temperance (moderation in good things), in safety. To deliberately place yourself in harms way is a presumptous sin against God. We are bought with a price...we are not our own. God expects perfection and purity of us. We are not to eat, drink, inhale anything harmful...we are not to presumptiously do dangerous things. We are all so clueless. We all need to allow God's word to be the lead of our life. Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceedeth from the mouth of God. The just shall live by faith, 24/7, which includes every aspect of our lives.

    August 5, 2011 at 12:46 am |
  5. Bo

    **************************************************@spiffy: You ask a very good question:can Jesus forgive you for being an atheist living a good life, yes, but you have to ask forgiveness and believe and have faith that He will do it.There is more to salvation than just living a good life, although that is very important.I agree that there is no proof that God exists. You can read the Bible cover to cover and find no proof that exists, only evidence. One of my favoriites is Job 38:31, when God is challenging Job which reads:"Can you bind the cluster of Pleides, or lose the belt of Orion?" Pleides is a group of stars originally thought to be 5-7 stars, but with modern telescopes there are about 250 stars that are traveling together in space as if they are bound together.The belt of [in the contilation of]Orion is made up several stars that are constantly moveing in irregular paths as learned only by the use of telescopes. So, how did Moses, who wrote the story of Job, know about these celestial wonders?

    August 4, 2011 at 8:08 pm |
    • Know What

      Bo,

      I am not an astronomer, but I found this:

      "The Pleiades and Orion star clusters described (Job 38:31). The Pleiades star cluster is gravitationally bound, while the Orion star cluster is loose and disintegrating because the gravity of the cluster is not enough to bind the group together. 4,000 years ago God asked Job, “Can you bind the cluster of the Pleiades, or loose the belt of Orion?” Yet, it is only recently that we realized that the Pleiades is gravitationally bound, but Orion’s stars are flying apart.

      To begin with, this verse is not describing anything, but asking a question of Job – the implication being that only the power of God could loosen the belt of Orion or bind the stars of the Pleiades. As it happens, it’s gravity, not God – a fact not mentioned in the verse.

      The Pleiades is a cluster of stars; Orion on the other hand, is a constellation – not a cluster – of stars, and as such only appear to be in relation with each other, from the point of view of earthbound observers. In fact no relationship exists, but this fundamental difference is not mentioned in the verse. This suggests that is was not known, as it makes comparison pretty pointless.

      Further, current estimates are that, 250 million years time, the stars of the Pleiades cluster will have in fact dispersed: they are not “bound” together, as implied in the verse." –http://unreligious.wordpress.com/

      August 4, 2011 at 10:47 pm |
    • Bucky Ball

      Well since Moses didn't write Job, I guess you can start with that.

      August 5, 2011 at 7:09 am |
    • The Bobinator

      Just like how moses wrote exodus, you know the story that even the israeli historical committee says didn't happen. Or just like how moses worshipped a volcano?

      August 5, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
  6. Johnny Blammo, Rodeo Christian

    Jesus, I would like to take this moment to pray. Dear Jesus, when they cinch that strap tight across that bull's testicles in a most Christian and loving way, please do not let me fall off him and get my own testicles crushed. And I know, dear Jesus, that should something like that happen to me, it will be Satan's fault and not yours, and certainly not mine for doing something pointless and stupid like riding an angry bull with his testicles crushed with a strap. And Jesus, let me succeed in this stuid ride so that I can get laid by one of Satan's smokin' hot nymhpomaniacs – I swear that I will repent tomorrow morning in your great get-out-of-hell-free system for believers.

    August 4, 2011 at 7:48 pm |
    • Saved by grace

      @@Johnny Blammo, Rodeo Christian
      Because you are free to say what you want, I just want to let you know that the rope is not tied around their testicles. It is tightened on them like a girth is tightened on a horse except it is in front of the back legs which makes it more uncomfortable.
      I hope this clears things up a little for you! 🙂 God Bless

      August 4, 2011 at 9:46 pm |
    • answer4U

      For those who think they tie a rope on the bulls privates... you're wrong. Maybe somewhere else they might, but they don't at the River Valley Ranch. I've seen that the rope is around the bulls waist, and he doesn't like it, which is why he try's to buck it off. It doesn't hurt the bulls. The way it was put to me is, the cowboy wants the bull to buck as much as possible. Try putting a rope around your privates and see how fast you could run and jump... you probably would try not to move at all. Just FYI!

      August 4, 2011 at 10:13 pm |
    • Peace2All

      @Johnny Blammo, Rodeo Christian

      Hey -Johnny Blammo ! My good friend -Johnny Blammo, thermonuclear accountant from beyond the 28th dimension !

      Nice post -Johnny ROFLMAO ! 😀 !

      Peace...

      August 5, 2011 at 1:29 am |
    • Pest2all

      @ peace...You said to mentioned to Johnny about "thermonuclear accountant from beyond the 28th dimension !"

      Can I ask how is that connected to the bulls testicles? And in case that it's connected, w/c testicle? The left of the right?

      And you commended Johnny saying: "Nice post"

      May I know how nice his post is? Is it very nice or somewhat nice?

      Pest..

      August 5, 2011 at 7:56 am |
    • Pest2all

      should be read: mentioned to Johnny (sans the said to)

      August 5, 2011 at 8:03 am |
  7. CaliMafia

    Yes, Jesus was very interested in bull riding. It's right there in the bible.

    August 4, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • JF

      This was on a plaque in Jesus' barn.

      Psalms 22:12-13
      Many bulls encompass me; strong bulls of Bashan surround me; they open wide their mouths at me, like a ravening and roaring lion.

      August 4, 2011 at 8:16 pm |
  8. Jerry

    I sincerely hope they all get their stupid skulls stomped in.

    August 4, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
  9. Bo

    ************************************************************************************ As a Christian I do not agree with this kind of activity. I believe it to be a sin to put yourself in UNNECESSARY danger, with the goal of gloryfing yourself or monitary gain. I'm sure unbelievers will disagree with me, but that is their God given chioce. ***************************************************************************************************************

    August 4, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
    • Bucky Ball

      Actually that is an interesting question..."free will". Anyone here read any Libet. Apparently there is no such thing.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IQ4nwTTmcgs

      August 4, 2011 at 9:14 pm |
    • Peace2All

      @Bucky

      Hey pal... that was very interesting. Thank you !

      Peace...

      August 5, 2011 at 1:34 am |
    • Bucky Ball

      @p2all
      😈

      August 5, 2011 at 7:11 am |
    • Pest2all

      @peace

      may I know what makes it interesting? Is very interesting or somewhat interesting?

      Pest...

      August 5, 2011 at 8:00 am |
    • Bulky Balls

      @Bucky

      Definitely there is, and it's for Free.

      August 5, 2011 at 9:23 am |
    • Bucky Ball

      @hypertrophic gonads
      I just presented you with some EVIDENCE that there isn't. I see you have done NOTHING to explain the video clip, other than your lame unsupported as'sertion. 😈

      August 5, 2011 at 6:44 pm |
  10. dirtystone

    Is it just Jesus that this is done for, or does say, the virgin Mary also enjoy bull riding? What other religious figures appreciate these guys riding bulls?

    August 4, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      This CNN artical mentions all the information related to Marry and bull riding:

      ttp://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

      August 4, 2011 at 7:09 pm |
  11. Dan

    I am starting a group called Russian Roulette for Jesus...any investors?

    August 4, 2011 at 7:01 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      This artical talks about all the people that think your joke is funny:

      http://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

      August 4, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
  12. frodo1008

    Let us see now, these Christians take young people out of the dangers of "The Means Streets" of drugs and gangs, which is a very good thing in itself (regardless of the religious implications, one way or the other).

    But then, they put them aboard bulls trained to quite possibly maim and kill possibly kill them in a "Sport" that they themselves call "The most dangerous sport in the world". Does this make a reasonable common sense at all??

    Just doing the kinds of work required to have a viable ranch is certainly dangerous in itself, so why make it even more dangerous, especially for impressionable young people??

    If these "Christians" actually read the bible itself, they would realize that the last thing that Christ himself (who was not some kind of a testosterone hoped up person) would have done was to have placed young people ( who he actually called the essence of heaven itself) in more danger than was absolutely necessary.

    So, let the Bulls go and do what bulls do to cows, and DUMP the damnable bull riding thing, THEN I would have to state that what they are doing was truly a great Christian thing to do, and NOT before!!!!

    August 4, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      This artical describes how much of a life you have:

      http://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

      U MAD???

      August 4, 2011 at 6:58 pm |
    • cain

      The kids aren't riding the bulls. At camp they do camp things like any other camp. The rodeo participants are locals, battlements and horsemen ... cowboys and cowgirls.

      Not a really great article, but if u are ever in the area in the summer, you might not find or more western place in the west. This place is gorgeous and ao are the people.

      August 4, 2011 at 9:02 pm |
  13. Mr Trololol

    Guys, I just found an artical that is even more interesting than this one! Take a look!

    http://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

    August 4, 2011 at 6:54 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      CNN FAIL!!! 😀

      It was supposed to be an artical about how costco is growing despite the economic crisis, but it looks like alot of random symbols to me. XD

      August 4, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
  14. Hesalive

    Every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is lord. Meet him now, get grace. Meet him then...not so much. He accepts every sinner willing to repent of their sins and follow Him forever.

    August 4, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
    • Spiffy

      If God is all forgiving why won't he forgive me for being an Atheist on earth despite living a good life?

      August 4, 2011 at 7:06 pm |
    • JF

      Spiffy,
      as long as you send him some cash every week, I'm sure he'll let you slide.

      August 4, 2011 at 8:03 pm |
    • herbert juarez

      spiffy does not exist

      August 4, 2011 at 8:24 pm |
    • Sporkify

      So Htiler and Stalin could conceivably be in Heaven, while Gandhi's down in Hell? No thanks, I'll see if Satan's hiring. He seems like the type who'd know how to have some fun.

      August 5, 2011 at 9:48 am |
  15. Marge

    Boy could we all have a shut for Jesus by all these people trying to make a buck off Jesus, God and religion. They are sickening.

    August 4, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
  16. Abuse Animals For Jesus ! ! !

    Religion is a delusional reconstruction of reality, done by people who cannot accept the world the way it actually is.

    August 4, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      http://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

      The CNN artical above makes more sense then what you just said. In case you didn't notice, this is a small group of people living in texas, not the entire christian religion. I'm Mr Trololol, and I say that you are a bad troll. U MAD???

      August 4, 2011 at 7:02 pm |
    • Spiffy

      Mr Trololol you obviously did not read the article because this takes place in Baltimore. I'm glad you immediately thought of Texans when you heard rodeo. I'm sure most of them would appreciate being associated with such a stupid and barbaric "sport".

      Typical stupid Christian.

      August 4, 2011 at 7:09 pm |
    • herbert juarez

      no matter were you go you will find that spiffy does not exist.

      August 4, 2011 at 8:25 pm |
  17. Pete

    Wahoo, public torture of animals,a mouth breathing inbred's delight.

    August 4, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      Here is a CNN artical about that

      http://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

      August 4, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
  18. frank

    Torture and Christianity go together like strawberries and cream.

    August 4, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
    • MrHanson

      Yep the actions of Stalin pretty much confirms your theory.

      August 4, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
    • gupsphoo

      Stalin did what he did to gain power, unlike what Christians did during the Inquisition in the name of god.

      August 4, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
    • Sardukar

      Every person who has Stalin-like mustache must be with a low morale.

      August 4, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • The Lionly Lamb of God Does Roar

      Catholocism would be more like it I dare say. Christendom is yet too new a religion to be blamed for the Acts of its' Mother

      August 4, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
    • frank

      @MrHanson
      "Yep the actions of Stalin pretty much confirms your theory"
      Um, no, they have no relevance or bearing whatsoever on my "theory". You aren't very smart, are you?

      August 4, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
    • MrHanson

      " People like Stalin were interested in propagating an ideology, not a look. Nobody was persecuted in the Soviet Union for not having a mustache like Stalin, or for not wearing a uniform similar to his, or for not liking the same food, music or sports. Large numbers were persecuted and killed for practicing religion, and for being interferences to atheist-communist expansion "

      "The Spanish Inquisition is a popular topic among Skeptics who pair it with the Crusades as an example of how Christianity has ruined Western culture. Is this an overplayed issue, or a serious problem for the Christian faith?
      The truth lies in between and is more a case of people being people rather than Christians being Christians"

      http://tektonics.org/qt/spaninq.html

      I'm not accusing atheists in doing crimes to "spread atheism" but usually atheism is the reason for lack of guilt in many crimes. The thought of never getting caught.

      August 4, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
    • Reality

      Only for the those interested in a religious update:

      1. origin: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20E1EFE35540C7A8CDDAA0894DA404482 (NY Times)

      “New Torah For Modern Minds

      Abraham, the Jewish patriarch, probably never existed. Nor did Moses. The entire Exodus story as recounted in the Bible probably never occurred. The same is true of the tumbling of the walls of Jericho. And David, far from being the fearless king who built Jerusalem into a mighty capital, was more likely a provincial leader whose reputation was later magnified to provide a rallying point for a fledgling nation.

      Such startling propositions – the product of findings by archaeologists digging in Israel and its environs over the last 25 years – have gained wide acceptance among non-Orthodox rabbis. But there has been no attempt to disseminate these ideas or to discuss them with the laity – until now.

      The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, which represents the 1.5 million Conservative Jews in the United States, has just issued a new Torah and commentary, the first for Conservatives in more than 60 years. Called "Etz Hayim" ("Tree of Life" in Hebrew), it offers an interpretation that incorporates the latest findings from archaeology, philology, anthropology and the study of ancient cultures. To the editors who worked on the book, it represents one of the boldest efforts ever to introduce into the religious mainstream a view of the Bible as a human rather than divine docu-ment. “

      2. Jesus was an illiterate Jewish peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations (or “mythicizing” from P, M, M, L and J) and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Ludemann, Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan sects.

      The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hitt-ites, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.

      earlychristianwritings.com/theories.html

      For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

      Current RCC problems:

      Pedophiliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!

      3., Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

      Current problems:
      Adulterous preachers, pedophiliac clerics, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,

      3. Mohammed was an illiterate, womanizing, lust and greed-driven, warmongering, hallucinating Arab, who also had embellishing/hallucinating/plagiarizing scribal biographers who not only added "angels" and flying chariots to the koran but also a militaristic agenda to support the plundering and looting of the lands of non-believers.

      This agenda continues as shown by the ma-ssacre in Mumbai, the as-sas-sinations of Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh, the conduct of the seven Muslim doctors in the UK, the 9/11 terrorists, the 24/7 Sunni suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the 24/7 Shiite suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the Islamic bombers of the trains in the UK and Spain, the Bali crazies, the Kenya crazies, the Pakistani “koranics”, the Palestine suicide bombers/rocketeers, the Lebanese nutcases, the Taliban nut jobs, the Ft. Hood follower of the koran, and the Filipino “koranics”.

      And who funds this muck and stench of terror? The warmongering, Islamic, Shiite terror and torture theocracy of Iran aka the Third Axis of Evil and also the Sunni "Wannabees" of Saudi Arabia.

      Current crises:

      The Sunni-Shiite blood feud and the warmongering, womanizing (11 wives), hallucinating founder.

      5. Hinduism (from an online Hindu site) – "Hinduism cannot be described as an organized religion. It is not founded by any individual. Hinduism is God centered and therefore one can call Hinduism as founded by God, because the answer to the question ‘Who is behind the eternal principles and who makes them work?’ will have to be ‘Cosmic power, Divine power, God’."

      The caste/laborer system, reincarnation and cow worship/reverence are problems when saying a fair and rational God founded Hinduism."

      Current crises:

      The caste system and cow worship/reverence.

      6. Buddhism- "Buddhism began in India about 500 years before the birth of Christ. The people living at that time had become disillusioned with certain beliefs of Hinduism including the caste system, which had grown extremely complex. The number of outcasts (those who did not belong to any particular caste) was continuing to grow."

      "However, in Buddhism, like so many other religions, fanciful stories arose concerning events in the life of the founder, Siddhartha Gautama (fifth century B.C.):"

      Archaeological discoveries have proved, beyond a doubt, his historical character, but apart from the legends we know very little about the circu-mstances of his life. e.g. Buddha by one legend was supposedly talking when he came out of his mother's womb.

      Bottom line: There are many good ways of living but be aware of the hallucinations, embellishments, lies, and myths surrounding the founders and foundations of said rules of life.

      Then, apply the Five F rule: "First Find the Flaws, then Fix the Foundations". And finally there will be religious peace and religious awareness in the world!!!!!

      August 4, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
    • MrHanson

      "Torture and Christianity go together like strawberries and cream."

      You must have spent many hours hovering over your keyboard to think of that.

      August 4, 2011 at 6:04 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      Wow, frank, your comment makes as much sense as this:

      ttp://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

      August 4, 2011 at 7:05 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      Reality, thanks for the copypasta. We really needed it spamming the comment board. Also, do you think that the christians care about what you have to say? Here is a CNN artical explaining who cares:

      ttp://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

      August 4, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
    • Reality

      frank, frank, frank,

      Some of the other references I used to prepare the religious update:

      o 1. Historical Jesus Theories, earlychristianwritings.com/theories.htm – the names of many of the contemporary historical Jesus scholars and the ti-tles of their over 100 books on the subject.
      2. Early Christian Writings, earlychristianwritings.com/
      – a list of early Christian doc-uments to include the year of publication–
      30-60 CE Passion Narrative
      40-80 Lost Sayings Gospel Q
      50-60 1 Thessalonians
      50-60 Philippians
      50-60 Galatians
      50-60 1 Corinthians
      50-60 2 Corinthians
      50-60 Romans
      50-60 Philemon
      50-80 Colossians
      50-90 Signs Gospel
      50-95 Book of Hebrews
      50-120 Didache
      50-140 Gospel of Thomas
      50-140 Oxyrhynchus 1224 Gospel
      50-200 Sophia of Jesus Christ
      65-80 Gospel of Mark
      70-100 Epistle of James
      70-120 Egerton Gospel
      70-160 Gospel of Peter
      70-160 Secret Mark
      70-200 Fayyum Fragment
      70-200 Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs
      73-200 Mara Bar Serapion
      80-100 2 Thessalonians
      80-100 Ephesians
      80-100 Gospel of Matthew
      80-110 1 Peter
      80-120 Epistle of Barnabas
      80-130 Gospel of Luke
      80-130 Acts of the Apostles
      80-140 1 Clement
      80-150 Gospel of the Egyptians
      80-150 Gospel of the Hebrews
      80-250 Christian Sibyllines
      90-95 Apocalypse of John
      90-120 Gospel of John
      90-120 1 John
      90-120 2 John
      90-120 3 John
      90-120 Epistle of Jude
      93 Flavius Josephus
      100-150 1 Timothy
      100-150 2 Timothy
      100-150 T-itus
      100-150 Apocalypse of Peter
      100-150 Secret Book of James
      100-150 Preaching of Peter
      100-160 Gospel of the Ebionites
      100-160 Gospel of the Nazoreans
      100-160 Shepherd of Hermas
      100-160 2 Peter

      3. Historical Jesus Studies, faithfutures.org/HJstudies.html,
      – "an extensive and constantly expanding literature on historical research into the person and cultural context of Jesus of Nazareth"
      4. Jesus Database, faithfutures.org/JDB/intro.html–"The JESUS DATABASE is an online annotated inventory of the traditions concerning the life and teachings of Jesus that have survived from the first three centuries of the Common Era. It includes both canonical and extra-canonical materials, and is not limited to the traditions found within the Christian New Testament."
      5. Josephus on Jesus mtio.com/articles/bissar24.htm
      6. The Jesus Seminar, mystae.com/restricted/reflections/messiah/seminar.html#Criteria
      7. Writing the New Testament- mystae.com/restricted/reflections/messiah/testament.html
      8. Health and Healing in the Land of Israel By Joe Zias
      joezias.com/HealthHealingLandIsrael.htm
      9. Economics in First Century Palestine, K.C. Hanson and D. E. Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, Fortress Press, 1998.
      10. 7. The Gnostic Jesus
      (Part One in a Two-Part Series on Ancient and Modern Gnosticism)
      by Douglas Groothuis: equip.org/free/DG040-1.htm
      11. The interpretation of the Bible in the Church, Pontifical Biblical Commission
      Presented on March 18, 1994
      ewtn.com/library/CURIA/PBCINTER.HTM#2
      12. The Jesus Database- newer site:
      wiki.faithfutures.org/index.php?t-itle=Jesus_Database
      13. Jesus Database with the example of Supper and Eucharist:
      faithfutures.org/JDB/jdb016.html
      14. Josephus on Jesus by Paul Maier:
      mtio.com/articles/bissar24.htm
      15. The Journal of Higher Criticism with links to articles on the Historical Jesus:
      mtio.com/articles/bissar24.htm

      August 4, 2011 at 11:57 pm |
    • Realty

      I just love cofee and pasta!

      August 5, 2011 at 8:09 am |
  19. Mahogany_Kae

    I love River Valley Ranch!!!!! I went like a dozen times as a kid..... Sing the RVR song....as we're riding along...over river and dale to the end of the trail...sing RVR song

    August 4, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      Here is an artical about how much I care:

      ttp://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=COST&source=story_quote_link

      August 4, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
  20. Unanimous300

    And God said, "Leave my freaking animals alone."

    August 4, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
    • Mr Trololol

      good point.

      August 4, 2011 at 7:00 pm |
    • God

      Except for the ones that you burn as sacrifices to me. I love that smell of burning flesh. That's why I wrote Leviticus and why I created hell. Yeah, I'm a jerk, but I'm god and you're not.

      August 5, 2011 at 12:36 am |
    • TruthMatters

      @G-, most of the animal sacrifice meats were for human consumptions just like today. Many times, only certain parts were commanded to offer as sacrifice. Leviticus talks of our internal purification. Atheists are forever stupid and go to hell because they want it. Repent.

      August 5, 2011 at 4:34 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.