Leaving religion but finding community
By Becky Garrison, Published: July 10, 2013
In my nearly twenty years reporting on Americana Christianity, I’ve observed a growing number of Christians becoming weary with the institutional church playing politics and amassing wealth instead of issuing a prophetic voice on social issues. When bestselling Christian pastors waffle on issues like marriage equality and even progressive emergent church gatherings continue to be led by white males who self-identify as straight, an increasing number of people choose to leave behind a faith that no longer speaks to them.
Roy Speckhardt, Executive Director of the American Humanist Association observes that as the overall numbers of people coming out as atheists grows, the large minority that do want to get together to share experiences is also on the rise. “Many have estimated that the true majority of non-theists haven’t been involved until now, because they’ve been waiting in the wings for just such a fulfilling opportunity as only a robust community can provide.” The interest surrounding groups like the Humanist Community Project at Harvard, the Sunday Assembly and Community Mission Chapel indicates the need for a community by those who abandoned the institutional church.
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