About Ryan Bell

For 19 years Ryan Bell was a pastor, most recently the senior pastor of the Hollywood Seventh-day Adventist Church. In March 2013 he resigned his position due to theological and practical differences. As an adjunct professor he has taught subjects ranging from intercultural communication to bioethics.
Currently he is a researcher, writer and speaker on the topic of religion and irreligion in America. In January 2014, Ryan began a yearlong journey exploring the limits of theism and the atheist landscape in the United States and blogs about that experience here at Year Without God.

Adventist “Holy Sexuality Conference” cancelled

hs conf

UPDATE: Further clarification from the South England Conference of Seventh-day Adventists below----My former denomination continues to make headlines, though not in the way they'd like, I think. Ben Carson has been saying things like homosexuality "absolutely" is a choice. Though he later apologized I don't think he suddenly changed his mind. It's more like the apology I used to offer my parents: I'm sorry I got caught. Or worse, I'm sorry some people were offended. The classic … [Read more...]

Different era, same injustice

Mark Twain House

I'm completely geeking out right now! I'm sitting at the Mark Twain House in Hartford, CT (actually, in the Carriage House next door) where I'm speaking tonight at 7 pm about my Year Without God. I've spent a fair bit of time with some of Mark Twain's writings about religion over the past year. A few days ago I posted a link on my Facebook page to a piece entitled "Bible Teaching and Religious Practice" from Europe and Elsewhere."The Christian Bible is a drug store," he writes. "Its contents … [Read more...]

Are atheists the most hated group in America?

13776_861264510602158_7739121667227117368_n

So, I started a bit of a kerfuffle over on my Year Without God Facebook page last night when I posted this image above with the caption, Can we cut the martyrdom complex? It's not a competition.By the way, I'm doing just fine compared to the poor, the homeless and the immigrants in my community. I know David. He's a wonderful person and I know he's just doing his job, but this is imprecise and, more importantly, unhelpful.Let me start by saying that I have been the target of a great deal … [Read more...]

Having doubts? Just stop it!

Screen Shot 2015-03-15 at 2.04.37 PM

I used to follow Christian author, Frank Viola, a little bit when I was a pastor and a graduate student. I never really cared much for what he was saying. I quoted him in my dissertation but not favorably. Today I received his occasional email update. I can't remember the last time I read one of these but for some reason today I did and this is what he said right off the top: Hey Friends, Frank V. here. Last month I wrote a blog post that went viral called "The Crisis of Faith." In it, I … [Read more...]

Jeremy Neill’s God is the deus ex machina

RYGER / Shutterstock.comThis post is part of a new feature from Patheos called Head to Head where our best minds debate the big questions of the day. This week, I am debating the Evangelical Channel’s Jeremy Neill of "Everyday Ethics". The question: does emphasizing the incomprehensible nature of god become an expression of atheism? Or put simply does religious faith require a personal God? This topic was brought to us by James F. McGrath. You can see James’ thoughts at his blog, Expl … [Read more...]

My response to Jeremy Neill’s “A God Who Love and Cares”

RYGER / Shutterstock.comThis post is part of a new feature from Patheos called Head to Head where our best minds debate the big questions of the day. This week, I am debating the Evangelical Channel’s Jeremy Neill of "Everyday Ethics". The question: does emphasizing the incomprehensible nature of god become an expression of atheism? Or put simply does religious faith require a personal God? This topic was brought to us by James F. McGrath. You can see James’ thoughts at his blog, Expl … [Read more...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X