How the Bar is Like Church

Society has brought about its own culture for living, celebrating and getting through life. Where we go to figure things out varies from person to person.

Bar Like Church

Have you ever noticed the profound similarities between a local pub and a church? We all seek answers for our own mortality whether that is at the bottom of a bottle or within the pews of a church. Where you choose to take that is for you to decide.

Here are ten ways the bar is like the church:



Bars and churches have similar atmospheres. Many people go to bars and churches for the uplifting environment, to feel good about who they are and to find some type of meaning in life. Whether this meaning is in the alcoholic haze amongst other drinkers or found in the verses of good book, it doesn’t matter, people want to feel good about themselves. People will continue to seek for happiness and the meaning of their existence regardless of where it leads them. These environments bring out something that they are searching for.


Think about how you get dressed to go to a church or a bar. The majority of churches are not causal places to attend. Many people put on their Sunday best to go to church. Now for many women and some men, going to a bar deserves getting dolled up, as well. You never know who you are going to meet at a church or a bar, it’s best to always be prepared. It’s quite humorous to think that both places deserve to have you look your best. However, some will argue that church clothes and bar clothes are not the same thing. It’s in the concept of getting dressed up that makes them so much alike.

The Leader

Who leads a church? Who leads a bar? At a church, a leader is typically the Pastor or Reverend. His duties include helping members of the church, listening to confessions, giving the sermons on Sundays and just to be that spiritual counselor people need. At a bar the leader is typically the bartender. He serves drinks, tells jokes, listens to your problems and offers advice. The bartender is the uplifting counselor to his patrons. So who do you go to more, your bartender or your pastor? Either way they both offer advice, a valuable service and are always where you need them to be.

Live Entertainment

Both bars and churches have live entertainment. At a bar, you will hear the jukebox blaring, a deejay mixing or a local band playing. At a church you will hear the musical instruments and the church choir singing. Either way music is connected to the idea of relaxing and celebrating. It’s two different types of music, but they are still listened to for the same reasons. Music seems to have the same effect on people’s bodies and minds. Whether you are dancing or throwing your hands in the air, the same adrenaline is being released. There is a notion that music is spiritually uplifting regardless of what type of music it is.

By the way, if you are in a Texas bar listening to country music about Texas, some would even go as far as to say that it’s straight from the gospel, because let’s not forget, God blessed Texas.


People have the need to confess their wrongdoings and mistakes to others. It is what makes us feel most human. At most Catholic churches they have confession booths. At a bar they have a counter and a stool. Both venues have heard people’s deepest, darkest secrets, their horrendous sins and their biggest life problems. Secrets always come out sooner or later. Seriously, what’s the difference between drinking a shot and saying 3 Hail Marys for any given sin?


A prayer has been defined in the dictionary as ‘a solemn request for help or expression of thanks addressed to God or an object of worship.’ Some people pray to God while others pray to the porcelain god. If given the choice, I’d rather pray to God then be puking my brains out. However, some people just can’t handle their liquor. Either way both types of prayers require kneeling, so if you can pray at church, why wouldn’t you pray at a bar?

To Meet People

Where do you go to meet people? Whether you like to admit it or not, some people like going to church to meet people, while others go to the bar to meet people. You hear people say all the time, it’s better to meet your spouse at a church than a bar. However, with so many similarities does it really matter? At least at the bar, you may get the honest person after a few drinks versus someone who put on their best behavior at church.

Holy Water

Holy water is considered water blessed by the priest. Some churches have ‘Holy’ water while some bar goers will say ‘Holy’ water is any type of alcohol. What’s the difference between the two? I think it is a fine line between what you think is religious cleansing and what you think is not religious cleansing. Any bar goer will argue why their ‘holy’ water is cleansing to the soul and mind.

Long Sermons

If you take the simplicity of what we considered a sermon, it is something you watch and listen to with passion. Well we all know a church sermon consists of the pastor preaching from the gospel while everyone is listening intently. So at the bar, what do most people listen to intently like a sermon? That would be any sports game, but preferably a football game. Yes a football game to many is just like a sermon and can not be missed. If you are not a sports fanatic a bar sermon could also be hearing your bartender or ‘regular’ who is very long-winded tell you the story of their life.


There is a level of truthfulness within a church and a bar. At a church people strive to be honest, truthful and in general good people. At a bar after you tipped back a few, you become blatantly honest and truthful regardless if the truth hurts or not. Does this makes a bar and a church similar? I think so.

If you wanted to take it a step further you could say the bouncers are like pall bearers and Deejays are like church music directors. No matter how you see the roles in bars and churches, there is a significant likeness. So whether you go to church or frequent your local bar both places are designed to make you feel better about yourself and give you a different perspective in life, preferably a honest one. One might be more like a party than the other but it is very compelling on how the desired outcomes are so much alike. One may get you drunk while the other may get you to heaven’s gate.

The bottom line is you can not ignore the similarities between the two. Now let the bar say Amen.


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