Monday, January 29, 2024

I pray through to Vic-tray, with Phil's hand on my butt

When I was growing up in the Nazarene Church,  most church services ended with an altar call: an invitation (or exhortation) to come down to the front of the sanctuary, kneel at the long, low wooden rail, and Pray Through to Victory (all preachers had a Southern accent, so they said "Victray). 

 It was similar to Catholic confession, with no priest: you asked God to forgive all the sins you could think of, and if He decided to, you became a Christian or got saved (from an eternity in hell).

Praying through to Victray  wasn't easy -- you had to work, sobbing and begging and moaning, for at least ten minutes, sometimes more.  And afterwards, the most trivial of sins -- an angry word, a lustful thought, a glance at the Sunday newspaper -- would negate your salvation, so you'd have to start all over again.  It was not unusual to go down several times a year, and some especially sensitive types went down at almost every service.

Usually just adults went down -- kids were excused, and teens had regular invitations to "bow your head right here and ask God to forgive you" in Sunday School (just before the morning service) and NYPS (just before the evening service), so we were usually saved by the time the altar call came around.

But in ninth grade, the first year that I was officially a teenager, I discovered a benefit to going down to the altar (other than the not going to hell thing).

Praying Through  was such hard work that you needed someone by your side, entreating God on your behalf.  So whenever you went to the altar, Christians of the same sex rushed down to help.  Two, three, or even more, depending on your popularity. 

They pressed against you, hugging and holding, arms around waists and shoulders, even pressed on your butt as if trying to push you into heaven, and when you successfully Prayed Through, you became a single mass, bear-hugging and back-slapping and pressing together.  During those moments, I felt a lifetime's worth of hard muscle, and sometimes even private parts pressed surreptitiously against me.

Going down to the altar allowed me to get hugged, held, and caressed by the preacher, the preacher's son, my Sunday school teacher  and lots of other cute boys and men.

And the next service, if I was still saved, I had carte blanche to go down and touch, hold, hug, and fondle any guy I liked.

The full story is on RG Beefcake and Boyfriends 


  1. I was like, wait, rural Iowa had rap in 1974? Then I realized of course they did: Anachronisms are trouble with a capital T and that rhymes with P and that stands for pool.

  2. "Rap" was 1970s slang for having a serious conversation, used mostly by adults talking to kids: "Let's rap about drugs."

  3. I grew up in the Church of the Nazarene and I’m now almost 63. Being a Nazarene, I thought I was going to go to hell if I acted on my gay impulses. So, I got married and did all the straight stuff, it didn’t work, and finally at age 52 I finally accepted myself as being gay and came out. I’m now married to a man and I’m 100% Out, both at work and in my personal life with friends and family.

    1. Thanks for sharing. I never felt any guilt, maybe because no preacher mentioned "homa-sekshuls" until I was in high school and already rebelling against a lot of church rules. So, did you stay in the Nazarene Church?



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