Interfaith Marriage and Interfaith Parenting: A Reader Asks

interfaith

A reader recently emailed me with some questions and I thought you all might be able to help him out. First I'll quote from his emails (he has given me permission to do so) and then I'll give some guidance for your responses. I married my Baptist wife while I was still searching within Christianity. I was enjoying going to a Presbyterian church in Tulsa because the sermons the pastor preached were often from a viewpoint that I hadn't heard in the version of Christianity I experienced growing … [Read more...]

Sally, Clara Oswald, and Doctor Who

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***Doctor Who Spoiler Ahead***"I am going to die and come alive again," Sally informed me recently."Um, okay," I replied. "Do you know of someone who did that?" I asked, curious where her comment was coming from."Yes," she answered confidently."Who?" I persisted. I frequently read her Bible story books, alongside fairy tales, Greek mythology, and Curious George, so I expected that the answer would be "Jesus.""Clara in Doctor Who!" she replied with excitement.In other words, when … [Read more...]

Medusa, the Weeping Angels, and Mary’s Fairy Godmother

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Last night I was in the middle of reading Sally a book of Greek mythology when she stopped me. She was excited and wanted to tell me something. She pointed to a picture of Medusa."That's an angel," Sally said."What? Are you sure?" I responded, surprised. How could she think that monster was an angel?"Yes. That's an angel." She was sure.And then I suddenly it all made sense and I understood not only why Sally identified Medusa as "an angel" but also why she identified the angel w … [Read more...]

Jesus, Doctor Who, and My Preschooler

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"What is that?"Sally had a Bible story book in her hand, and was pointing to the empty tomb. The picture showed the tomb with the stone rolled away, a radiant Jesus standing outside talking to Mary Magdalene, and two sleeping Roman guards off to the side."That's the empty tomb," I told her. "After Jesus died they buried him there, and then he rose again. That means he came alive again."Sally looked from the picture to me, confused. I wrote last month that ever since I overheard Sally call … [Read more...]

How I Lost My Fear of Reading My Daughter Bible Stories

Bible story book

Almost a year ago, I wrote a post about my concerns about reading Bible story books to my daughter Sally. Any atheist parent with religious relatives will have to figure out how to deal with the Bible story books their children will inevitably be given for birthdays and Christmas. This is something that’s been on my mind lately because a Noah’s Ark board book has suddenly become my young daughter’s favorite book.Some atheist parents may just return Bible themed story books when their child … [Read more...]

In which Sally masters grace and I relax

praying child

As you may have noticed, I can sometimes be a bit angsty about raising my young daughter Sally without God. For one thing, God was just about the most important thing about my upbringing, and that makes raising children outside of religion seem completely foreign. For another thing, essentially all of our relatives on both sides are devoutly religious, and being the only ones in the family to be raising our children without religion can present interesting challenges. I think, though, that it's … [Read more...]

Teaching Children about God: How to Get Started?

A couple of months ago I wrote a post called "Are You Teaching Her about Jesus?" I wrote about how a relative had put this question to me in a letter, clearly concerned about my daughter Sally's spiritual well-being. And I wrote about how I'm still not sure how to respond to such questions given that we're not "out" as atheists to our relatives at this point. One of my readers left this comment: There is teaching “about” and there is teaching “to blindly believe in”. You can probably truthfully … [Read more...]


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