Freethinker Group Holds “Ask an Atheist” Panel Discussion

On the evening of November 21st, the Antelope Valley Freethinkers (AVF) in Lancaster, California held an open panel of five atheists to answer anyone’s questions about atheism, agnosticism, Humanism, and other issues around religion. I was very honored to be invited to participate on the panel. We were hosted by the Center for Spiritual Living. AVF President David Dionne described it this way:

This isn’t a debate with winners and losers; it’s an opportunity to address biases and misconceptions, and promote better understanding and acceptance of nonbelievers through civil discourse. Our goal is that everyone who participates will come away with something positive and affirming. Consider bringing a religious friend or two!

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Texas Pastor Holds Public Dialogue with Atheist Couple to Counter Stereotypes and Misconceptions

Credit where it’s due: Pastor Doug Kriz of Grace Christian Church in McKinney, Texas wanted his congregation to get to know atheists in their community. Not to preach to them — not yet, anyway — but to understand why they might disagree with Christian beliefs and to break down the stereotypes.

To do that, he had a public conversation with two local atheists. No shouting. No preaching. Just a chance to hear Kyle and Janie Oyakawa‘s stories firsthand.

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How is Your Atheist/Christian Relationship Going?

An interesting thread appeared on Ask Reddit yesterday. Christians who date atheists (and vice versa) were asked about their situations: How did they meet? How’s it going? Etc.

Some of the highlights:

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I Gave a Sermon at a Church About My Atheist “Spirituality”

From my work on the local interfaith council in my home town, I’m familiar with several clergy from a wide variety of churches, and so a senior member of the Unitarian Universalist Church who knows me well invited me to give a sermon as a guest on Sunday, August 9.

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I Was a Guest Speaker at a Church Last Sunday

In May of 2013, Kile Jones launched a nation-wide project called Interview an Atheist at Church Day where he matched atheists and preachers for video-recorded conversations in their churches. I had immediately signed up as a candidate, but he was not able to find a match for me. Since then, he has continued to do interviews of his own and to pair up several more atheists with pastors. Finally, several weeks ago, he introduced me to Dr. Scott Colglazier, the pastor of the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, and we had the interview last Sunday, June 28. (Thank you, Kile, and thank you, Dr. Colglazier.)

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