7 Tips for Closeted Atheist Teenagers

Over the years, I have received a lot of emails and messages from other closeted atheists asking for advice. Most of these messages have been from atheists in high school, wondering what to do in regards to having this secret among Christian friends, parents, and church members. Thanks to a tweet from Godless Iowan, I decided that compiling my advice together could hopefully prove helpful for at least one of my younger readers. Continue reading “7 Tips for Closeted Atheist Teenagers”

Coming Out to My Sister and Her Husband

I wrote in January about the events that led up to my untimely coming out conversation with my mother. First, my fiance’s and my “immoral” private life was leaked, which led to my family expecting us to stop and being appalled when we refused to apologize. This ended in me coming out to my mother as an atheist as a way to provide some explanation for why we didn’t play by her Lutheran rules. After talking to her and to my oldest sister, the wife of a pastor, my fiance and I safely assumed that her pastor-husband would have moral qualms, if not strict religious restrictions, from marrying together two dirty sinners such as the two of us, as had been our original plan. We informed him that we had decided to go a more secular way—getting married at our reception hall using a non-pastor officiant—to avoid this cognitive dissonance. Continue reading “Coming Out to My Sister and Her Husband”

8 Ways to Build Interfaith Bridges

Last week, I wrote on a talk that I attended at school about the bible and homosexuality. It turns out that that was the first of many talks that I’d be sitting through. This week was a “focus week” of sorts in which my college would have one or two talks per day, and this year’s theme was loving your neighbor. Of course, they were Christian-themed presentations, but some of the ones I went to were surprisingly good. Although they used the bible as a basis instead of common sense and human empathy, they focused on loving and being respectful to your neighbor, which are universal themes that everyone should practice despite their religion or lack thereof. Continue reading “8 Ways to Build Interfaith Bridges”

Coming Out to My Mother

I didn’t plan to come out on January 3rd, 2018. It was supposed to happen a year from now. I’d be married and living in my own house with my husband; the wedding would be out of the way after I patiently waited until arriving at adulthood unscathed. There would be a gradual and logical buildup: first I tell my younger sister, then my older sisters and their husbands, and finally my mother. I would take my husband to my mother’s house, we would tell her together, and we would leave her to process the news without us there. Continue reading “Coming Out to My Mother”

Changing the World Behind Closed Doors

This past week, I spent a night at my sister’s house. Her husband is a Lutheran pastor, and I don’t know if it’s just a pastor thing, but he always reads books on Christianity for fun. Books on worship, doctrine, Martin Luther, bible study guides, bible commentaries, Lutheran service practices, the Reformation, you name it, he reads it. Every time I see him, he has a new book. His Lutheran books line the walls of his office in the church.

Continue reading “Changing the World Behind Closed Doors”

What Type of Atheist Am I?

A closeted one. Duh. (Spoiler alert: see Type #5.)

If you want to know more than just that, stay tuned. There are actually seventeen different types of atheists outlined in this post from Common Sense Atheism. I’m going to look at these various options for atheism and see which categories I fall into. Atheist readers, feel free to do it for yourself as well! It could also work for theists if some of the wording is shifted around. Continue reading “What Type of Atheist Am I?”

As for Me and My House, We Won’t Serve the Lord

Not a day goes by when I don’t worry about how I will live when I’m independent. I’m the third of four sisters; the two oldest are married and the youngest is still in school. My oldest sister teaches at a Lutheran elementary school and her husband is an LCMS pastor. My mother is the organist at our home church, so between coming home from school and visiting my sister, any time I go to church, I’m in for multiple services at a time. I can’t help but look forward to the future when I’m married, I have my own family, and I can choose to not set an alarm for Sunday mornings. A girl can dream, right? Continue reading “As for Me and My House, We Won’t Serve the Lord”