Jesus, Zeus, Persephone—and Fairies

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"Mommy, what god to you believe in?" Sally asked me recently."I don't believe in any god, honey," I told her."But mom, you're supposed to believe in a god!" Sally responded."Uh, no, actually, people can choose what they want to believe," I said. "Who told you that you're supposed to believe in a god?" I asked."No one," she said. "I just knewed it.""Well okay, what god do you believe in?" I asked."Lots of them," she told me. "I believe in Jesus, and Zeus, and … [Read more...]

When God Took a Journey in a Cave

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We were walking to the car one night when Sally commented on the stars."Do you what makes them stay up there?" I asked her."God put them there!" Sally exclaimed."Who is God?" This was the first time I'd heard her use the term."God is Jesus," she replied."But what is God?""Mom!" Sally exclaimed. "God is just his name! He has two names, God and Jesus!""Well, then how did he put the stars in the sky?""I will tell you the story," Sally responded with a smile, and her … [Read more...]

Interfaith Marriage and Interfaith Parenting: A Reader Asks

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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

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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...]


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