Don’t call it atheist church; secular communities are growing

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Participants listen to speakers during Kansas City's first Oasis gathering on April 6, 2014 in downtown Kansas City, Mo. Religion News Service photo by Sally Morrow

Participants listen to speakers during Kansas City's first Oasis gathering on April 6, 2014 in downtown Kansas City, Mo. Religion News Service photo by Sally Morrow

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (RNS) Kansas City Oasis hopes to provide more layers of connectivity through mom’s groups, other niche get-togethers and service opportunities.

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  • Senta

    Finally, a real alternative for nonbelievers! I’m proud to know many of the people in this story- and that they’re good, kind, compassionate human beings. The time has come for communities like this to form and join together people who thought they were alone!

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  • gilhcan

    I think it would be wise to define such groups simply as ethical seekers, or, as some do, humanists, or just seekers. “Secular” seems to carry a negative connotation because it immediately references its opposite, “religious.” No seekers, church or non-church, will ever maintain the “same values.”

    There’s no need for the same values as long as all values are honest and good toward our fellow humans. “Seekers” is good. We’re all seekers. Striving to understand all aspects of our world and our lives in it and to live with honest, good values–of which there are many–is sufficient.

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  • Paul Frantizek

    ‘Free thinking’ humanists looking for a secular-themed rec center where they can gather together and no doubt share stale Richard Dawkins inspired anti-religion memes.

    How droll.

  • Jon Do

    Atheist church? LOL
    “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery”

  • Larry

    They don’t need to do anything like that.

    All one has to do is look at the online comments by various religious nuts in order to spark a discussion or get a laugh. There is no better advertisement for atheism than listening or reading what fundamentalists have to say on any given subject.

  • Atheist Max

    “Gather ’round!” shouts the Preacher.
    “Listen to my nonsensical claims, incoherence, wild assertions and hokum – you must believe it true or you’ll go to Hell”

    Religion is nonsense. Secular people are gathering to tell their own stories for communal fun and to share stories full of wisdom. Nobody needs the ridiculous world of the preacher’s claims anymore.

  • PJ

    Get a life atheist max. You are so mean spirited and angry.

  • Atheist Max

    I would love to ‘get a life’ but Christians won’t let me get a chance!

    Christians are trying to shove their positions on everyone and can’t seem to stop.

    “We” must push these ideas on “all Americans, even non-believers” – says Truth Ministries – and “promote church doctrine” across American law.

    Evangelicals like ‘Truth In Action Ministries’, spend millions of dollars on causes like these:

    State Legalized Murder of Doctors – South Dakota
    Mandatory Trans-Vaginal probes – Virginia Legislature

    Blocking people from contraception and family planning service – Texas, Kansas, Alabama, Louisiana
    Obstruction of prescriptions – Illinois, Washington

    Discrimination as religious choice -Arizona (SB-1062)

    Anti-Gay laws – Texas
, Arizona, Kansas, etc..
    Anti-women’s rights laws – Texas, Louisina, Virginia

    Biased Counseling laws – South Dakota, Texas
    Creationist NONSENSE to replace Science Education: 12 States!!

    Religious people don’t understand how the separation of CHURCH and State preserves their own religious freedom yet through the ignorance of their churches they are funding its demise.

    Christians are going to wreck all of our freedoms. Unless the rest of resist loudly and wake everyone up from these religious delusions.

    If Jesus is not of this world why don’t you keep his nonsense out of mine???

  • Charles

    Secular people are gathering to tell their own stories for communal fun and to share stories full of wisdom.

    Ironically, that caricature works for many NPR gatherings (Moth Radio Hour/Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me/Prairie Home Companion et al) as easily as it does for ritual version of a Roman Catholic Solemn Easter Vigil done right/rite.
    We are all secular in an obviously cosmological sense ala Sagan’s famed “star stuff” analogy. But we are, one way or the other, endowed with free will. I choose to listen to Fr Robert Barron, not Fr. John Corapi or Charles Coughlin of late memory. Were I you, Max, I’d gladly listen to the late Hitchens over the soul-less sour Dawkins, or his now room temperature opposite, Fred Phelps.
    There’s no Damaclese sword over your head, Max. Don’t presume to hold one over mine.

  • favorite

    Frankly, I don’t like seekers – sounds to spiritual to me. Seeking what? We may all be seeking something, or a lot of things, but not center our lives around it.
    And secular is not the opposite of religious. it simply means outside of religious context — i.e. most of life unless you live in a theocracy, in which religion is enforced. The US is a secular country. There’s nothing negative about the word that needs to be hidden.

  • Carol Elrod

    These people would fit in with Unitarian-Universalist congregations. In my congregation, in Ft. Myers, FL, we have Buddhists, ex-Catholics, ex-Jews, ex-Protestants, atheists, humanists, agnostics etc. We treasure diversity. We don’t dwell on what we don’t believe any more, but on what we do believe. Good luck on finding a congregation like ours, a spiritual home for seekers. They are out there!

  • Atheist Max

    Endowed with free will? No. That is an oxymoron.
    If free will was “given” to you, then you can’t have already had it. It is impossible.

    With Gods we must make a choice:
    I can choose to fake a belief.
    Or I can choose to be honest.

    If faking it is what God wants – what good is God?
If my choice of honesty is rejected by God – what good is God?
    Free will is not the issue. Honesty is.

    I’ve got no sword of Damocles over anybody’s head.
    Seems the swords are all being held by the Christians and other religious people – as they always are.

  • rockscryout

    The people in this story are seeking something. If they weren’t they wouldn’t be there. Evidently that “something” includes upbeat music, community service, and youth events.

  • Paul Frantizek

    Anyone pompous enough to describe themselves as a ‘free-thinker’ probably shouldn’t be laughing at other people.

    Of course anyone pompous enough to describe themselves as a ‘free-thinker’ almost certainly lacks the self-awareness to realize that.

  • Paul Frantizek

    He’s probably fit right in with the rest of the ‘free-thinkers’. They could see who can repeat Richard Dawkins memes the fastest.

    Winner could get a tube of acne drying gel.

  • Jay

    The actions you list are being implemented by individuals and group’s who Claim to be Christians. When in reality they are secular-political’s. The one’s we need to protect against and battle are the far right and the Supreme Court’s rulings, which supports them.

  • Larry

    Riiight because you are showing so much humility in the face of your religious belief. No pomposity or self-satisfying smugness in your response at all. /s

  • Larry

    Its funny because religious nuts mention Dawkins more often than atheists do. They think he is some kind of Atheist prophet or Pope.

    Paul, it is obvious you have no idea what atheists believe or do beyond what your preacher tells you.

  • Atheist Max

    People who “Claim to be Christians” are as bad as people who “claim to be Nazis” as far as I am concerned – they behave with the same sort of fascism, in that they desire to push people into acting on behalf of their ‘god’.

    The enemy is religion.
    It has no place in our culture. People should keep their Christian/Muslim/whatever beliefs to themselves but leave the FACTS to people who care about evidence.

  • rayman

    Some say the best evidence that there is no God……..the Bible!
    Read it! Yikes!

  • Lorelei

    Honestly, I’m sick of every atheist being labeled in this fashion. I wasn’t raised in religion, I didn’t have that handicap to overcome. I have never needed to read atheist philosophy to vindicate my own thoughts. I couldn’t quote Dawkins if my life depended on it, and had never heard of him before 5 years ago.

  • Atheist Max

    Thanks for speaking up!
    We atheists are under attack for simply existing.
    Thanks for letting the believers know that we are larger in numbers than they imagine.

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  • Keeping An Eye Open

    The trouble is, that if you go behind the scenes and find out what these people say about the religious or others they don’t agree with, you will find some pretty vicious stuff.

    I think we need to keep an eye on a possible hate group forming.

    Not saying it is…just concerned. Some of their leadership positively hates Christians.

  • Future Gulag Resident

    Just go to the atheist facebook pages that spew the most vicious bile you can imagine about Christians.

    Keep an eye on these people.

    They will kill us if they get the political power to do so. Its happened before.

  • Atheist Max

    @Future Gulag Resident,

    No. That is a slander against Atheists!
    Your straw men are not Atheists – and I know who you would name.

    AMERICA is an Atheist country, founded by Atheists and defended by Atheists!

    If you like America, you currently enjoy life under AN ATHEISTIC CONSTITUTION. AND I don’t see any Atheists threatening Christians!

    “Congress shall make NO LAW establishing Religion”


  • Atheist Max

    @Keeping an eye Open,

    Nonsense. Snap out of it – that is just fear mongering.

    I hate Christianity, NOT Christians.
    Just as I hate cancer, Not cancer patients.

    Unlike cancer, religion is very easy to cure.
    The VAST MAJORITY of us Atheists are ex-Christians.

  • BeardFace

    The point of atheism is to not believe in “organized” religion and that there is no god. Well what do we have here? Organization…with all the fixings of church and instead of God we have someone to teach us how to NOT believe? So absurd…#1 People suck because they have something to always sell. #2 Now we can all feel pressure to attend this every sunday? To me the idea of this atheist church is a repackaged set of principals, ideas, and morals borrowed from other religions. Know this..mankind often metamorphs into the thing he hates through imitation. Go ahead lets plant the seeds that will give us atheistic tyranny one day on the levels of the great inquisition!! Your not special Atheist. Your human and your very susceptible because you are desperately looking for something to place your “faith” in. I’m sure overtime you will cop lessons from the teachings and deeds of Jesus all repackaged for your “atheist” cult. Hypocrisy on the highest order…

  • ROchelle

    Max….is really smart and he actually gets it. Not many people do.

  • Jon Adams

    I find this laughable. One of the great things about being an atheist is not having to go anywhere on Sunday mornings. Like Lionel Ritchie was sang…easy like Sunday morning.

  • TG

    Pretty much agree with all the stuff you say,but heres the thing I see all over sites like this..The christians and lawyers have done a great job of making the vast majority of people read the constitution the way they want it and not the way it was written and who it was written for(its called brainwashing)
    It was written for the INDIVIDUAL not the churches.
    They have no rights whatsoever under the first ammendment.Zero.
    Thats for you and me not some corporation or church.
    Read it again…………………Thats why there is no church or government mentioned..

  • KEEP THE EYES OPEN too lol

    Christians hate each other , hate hate Muslims and Hindus and any q not a Christian …. your concern only denotes what Christians are and have been for 1700year a group went to PURSUE being chased . ironically GAMALIEL allegedly told to the Sanhedrin IF THE Movement IS GOD WILL PREVAIL … today I remember THIS Movement called OASIS or freethinker or gettogether or whatever will go foward because it is made FOR US AND democratically without fear and a sick prozelitism

  • KEEP THE EYES OPEN too lol

    exactly I HERETICAL SECULAR mean I freethinker who doesnt need supranatural being for be MORAL….
    SO A SECULAR CHURCH = SECULAR ASSAMBLY o whatever humanist people dont seek they find THEIRSELVE already. IS WHY THE ARE SECULAR.

  • arjaizen

    Project much?

    You may want to Google “Crusades”. The hands of Christianity are far from bloodless.

    Theocracy is *always* followed by oppression and purging of those that aren’t pure enough in the “true faith”. Christian denominations are no exception.

  • arjaizen

    You may want to look up “no true scotsman.”

    Sorry, you don’t get to disown the fundamentalists of your faith just because in practicing what their bibles actually say, they show the world how oppressive and intolerant the religion is.

  • greetings…I have read the bible from end to front, its been difficult to encourage others to do the same. In no way do I discount God or the historical book, but there is a Goddess missing. Revelation Chapter 17 discusses our LADY LIBERTY as a terrible word and she is not; she is a Diety.

    Just curious if there are others who know the real truth,

    Blessings to all beings!