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Showing posts from February, 2006

Pastor Appeals Move to Revoke His License

SALT LAKE CITY UTAH: A Christian pastor who could lose his license to run a rehabilitiation group for homeless men is appealing.

Following a KSL Eyewitness News investigation, the Department of Human Services issued a notice of revokation to Steve Sandlin. Sandlin is a pastor for the Central Christian Church.

According to the notice, Sandlin forced homeless men to work as telemarketers in the basement of the church. Their wage: about 28 cents an hour. And even that money was withheld-- donated back to the church.

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My Son

sent in by J.H. Milivojevic

if my mother loved me so much

then why did she lie to me so much

why did she try to make me believe in magic

why did she try to make me believe in life after death

why did try to make me believe that god hears me when I tell a lie

why did she try to make me believe that we will all be together again after we die


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Beyond the Fear and Guilt - A Secular Life

sent in by Ken

I began to have doubts about god, heaven and hell when I was in my early 20's. I met a liberal, critical thinker who presented ne w ideas to me at my first office job. He challenged some of the dogma and beliefs I had since childhood. His name was Larry.

For a number of years I began to stay away from church and rarely attended. By the time I moved out from my parents house, I had altogether stopped going to church.

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Pastor Pleads No Contest in Sex Case

A northern Ohio church pastor arrested in an internet sex sting has faced a judge over his charges.

Roy Burton, a pastor from Milford Center near Marysville, Ohio, has been in Greene County several times over the past few months, mostly for court appearances stemming from his November arrest.

Burton was charged with importuning and attempted unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.

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A Question of Statistics?

I am an ex-christian and I have been on a Christian forum. One of the Christians on this forum wrote the following about why Christianity must be true:

Member
Member # 3741
posted 02-21-2006 12:25 AM

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Unique among all books ever written, the Bible accurately foretells specific events-in detail-many years, sometimes centuries, before they occur. Approximately 2500 prophecies appear in the pages of the Bible, about 2000 of which already have been fulfilled to the letter—no errors.

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Ex-pastor Norwich faces sex charge

Norwich Bulletin

NORWICH CT -- The former pastor of a Norwich church, who resigned under pressure from the church because of alleged "immoral" activity, was arrested this week on sexual assault charges.

Charles Johnson Jr., the former pastor of the Norwich Assembly of God, was charged Tuesday by Norwich police with first-degree sexual assault and two counts of risk of injury to a minor.

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Church founder sentenced to 20 years for raping, abusing girls

KYOTO JAPAN -- A church founder accused of 22 counts of rape and sexual assault against seven girls was sentenced to 20 years' imprisonment by the Kyoto District Court on Tuesday.

Handed the prison sentence was Tamotsu Kin, 62, founder of the Seishin Chuo Kyokai church in Yawata, Kyoto Prefecture.

"He abused his position as a pastor, which is looked on with awe and reverence as someone close to God, and habitually committed the crimes," Presiding Judge Takeshi Uegaki said. "His actions were extremely malicious, to a level unparalleled by other sex crimes."

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My story...

sent in by Mike

Cross post from "Breaking the Bad News.."

I wish I'd run across this site about 4 months ago!

My parents were involved in the Methodist church when I was young. I went through the confirmation thing and all, but to me it was just words and I never really bought into it. After I was about 13 - 14 we just stopped going to church. Nothing was said, just stopped. I think my parents became agnostic/athiest at that time, though they just recently made if very clear.

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Sex Offender Caught in Church

Murphysboro, IL - A registered sexual predator was caught by police in a Murphysboro church, and now 40 year old Russell Bryant faces new criminal charges. But Bryant's troubles with the law began long before his arrest in late November.

Court documents in the Jackson County courthouse show that back in 2001 Bryant was charged with sexually assaulting a girl between the ages of 13 and 16. He plead guilty to those charges and was sentenced to 24 months probation and required to register as a sexual predator.

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Letting It All Go

by DH

After wandering through Baptist, Pentecostal and Episcopal churches – on the way to a career as a minister – this man walks away from Christianity

I have to smile each time I see one of those bumper stickers that says, “No Jesus, no peace; Know Jesus, know peace.” The premise behind this clever play on words is that the driver of that automobile has perfect peace because he/she has accepted Jesus as “personal savior” and people who have not, or those, like me, who once embraced Jesus but have subsequently rejected him, are crawling through life in turmoil, torment and indescribable unhappiness.

As others have observed, most Christians find it unsettling to think that there are “former Christians,” people such as me who were completely converted, born again, filled with the spirit – people who had all this but, after sober reflection, walked away from it. We must be unhappy, they say. Perhaps we were not “genuine” Christians in the first place; had we been deceived by Satan?

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A weekend intensive for letting go of religious indoctrination and reclaiming your life.

Led by Marlene Winell, Ph.D.

The effects of authoritarian religious training can last a long time and run deep, seriously impacting your ability to enjoy life. The process of leaving one's faith often creates intense feelings of confusion, grief, anxiety, and anger. Full recovery can be difficult if the issues are not clear and you feel alone in the struggle.

This workshop is designed to support you in this process of healing and growth. The weekend is a powerful group experience of sharing personal history, examining key issues, and exploring new liberating concepts. In addition to discussion, we will use experiential methods including art, guided visualization, movement, and role-play. There will also be time for shared meals, relaxation, and fun. Because we are staying together, we will have the chance to get acquainted and begin a lasting support system beyond the weekend. As a special bonus, we will have massage and acupuncture treatments available, and guests are welcome to s…

Say hello to yet another EX-christian

I was not abused by Catholic Priests, or by anyone in any way.

Nothing catastrophic made me "angry with God".

There was no single event that lead me to atheism; rather, it was a very gradual journey of examining the evidence, (or lack thereof) all the available facts, falsehoods & myths, actual cross-referencing history, from sources both within and hostile to christianity. Not to mention those that are purported to be "evidence" from an alleged "Jesus" contemporaries - most of which turn out to be hearsay, early christian forgeries, or conglomerations of mistranslations and misinterpretations.

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Ex-minister walks atheist path

A retiree encourages USF students to look inward, not to the heavens, for answers and says we should all be concerned about the religious right.

UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA AREA - His message is clear: Jesus is not coming. Not today. Not ever.

At 59, James Young has spent almost a decade sharing his atheist beliefs with the public, driving every Wednesday morning from his home in Lithia to set up a tent at the University of South Florida Bull Market.

Even on the coldest morning, Young is there, ready to share, and sometimes debate, his views with anyone who will listen that there is, in fact, no such being as God.


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War on Science

A short excerpt from the BBC's recent broadcast of "The War on Science."

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Malevolent Design, the neglected companion of ID

by Reverend Atheistar

By now I'm sure you've heard of Intelligent Design, which focuses on alleged irreducible complexity, and perhaps even Incompetent Design, which focuses on the mysterious designer's shoddy handiwork, but have you heard of Malevolent Design? This takes ID and turns it on it's head. The Intelligent Design Creationists always love to focus on the benevolent to be found in nature such as a flagellum or an eye. But why stop there? Why, unless you are intentionally avoiding the negative in order to preserve an image of deity that loves everyone? Why not take things a bit further and look at the flip side of the equation? Seeing as I lack belief in all gods and goddesses and have no such agenda to preserve anything about their alleged personalities, I shall delve full into this fascinating mythological concept.

Malevolent Design (hereafter MD), simply put, is the secondary negative quality that one should see if one first sees intelligence. If there be a ma…

Pastor Charged With Incest

QUEENS NY-- The pastor of a Westbury, LI, church has been charged with sexually abusing his three daughters at their Rockaway residence over the last 4½ years.

"What allegedly happened to these children is every child's and every mother's worst nightmare" district attorney Richard A. Brown said. "Even after the physical abuse has stopped, the consequences of such sexual assault for victims are profound and can result in emotion trauma from which they may never recover."

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Pastor blames demons, not mental illness

Defense accuses him, husband of downplaying Plano mom's behavior

MCKINNEY TX - The pastor of a charismatic Christian church attended by the Plano mother on trial, accused of fatally cutting off the arms of her 10-month-old daughter, told jurors Wednesday that mental illness is really demon possession that cannot be cured with psychiatry or medicine.

"I do not believe that any mental illness exists other than demons, and no medication can straighten it out, other than the power of God," said Doyle Davidson, the 73-year-old minister of the Water of Life Church that Dena and John Schlosser attended several times a week.

Dena Schlosser, 37, is on trial for capital murder in the slaying of her daughter Margaret in November 2004.

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Anaheim Pastor Arrested in Alleged Molestations

The pastor of an Anaheim CA church has been arrested on suspicion of molesting three boys and a girl — all congregants whom he met during services, authorities said Wednesday.

Raul Rosas Hernandez, 41, of Anaheim was released from Orange County Jail on $100,000 bail Wednesday. He is facing charges of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under 14, officials said.

The children, 8 to 13 years old at the time of the alleged molestation, were members of churches that Hernandez attended or where he was a pastor. Investigators said the incidents occurred over a 16-year period.

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Losing my religion

sent in by Todd

This is my first time ever writing into a forum of this nature. Believe me, I never thought-just a few years ago-that I would ever question the faith that I have, essentially, been weened on.

I'm in my mid 20's and for the first time I am, openly, challenging and becoming disillusioned with my religious beliefs.

Grant it, I still believe in an omniscient supreme being. For personal reasons having faith does help me. However, I am not sure that I believe in the judeo Christian god anymore.

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Church counselor pleads guilty to sex crimes with minors

A High Point North Carolina man was sentenced to 18 years in prison Thursday after pleading guilty to having sexual relations with a 12-year-old girl.

Charles Douglas Parry, 36, pleaded guilty to 18 counts of taking indecent liberties with a child, 13 counts of first-degree rape, three counts of first-degree sex offense and one of felonious restraint.

Assistant District Attorney Randy Carroll said Parry began having sex with the girl in January 2005 while he was a counselor for the youth group at the church where she was a member.

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Their Own Version of a Big Bang

Those who believe in creationism -- children and adults -- are being taught to challenge evolution's tenets in an in-your-face way.

WAYNE, N.J. — Evangelist Ken Ham smiled at the 2,300 elementary students packed into pews, their faces rapt. With dinosaur puppets and silly cartoons, he was training them to reject much of geology, paleontology and evolutionary biology as a sinister tangle of lies.

"Boys and girls," Ham said. If a teacher so much as mentions evolution, or the Big Bang, or an era when dinosaurs ruled the Earth, "you put your hand up and you say, 'Excuse me, were you there?' Can you remember that?"

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My road to reason

sent in by Rob from the Netherlands

I was born and raised in Suriname (South America). My father was an inactive Catholic who experimented with different kinds of spirituality (or so he told me) and my mother was Lutherian. I have one brother who I grew up with (I have 2 more half sisters and a half brother, but I wasn't raised with them). We grew up as Catholics, went to church every Sunday but at home we weren't very active w.r.t. religion. We also went to Catholic primary and secondary schools. While in primary school (up to the age of 11) I accepted the gospel like hook, line and sinker. Still, it was during this time that the first act which would drive me away from Christianity occurred. At age 10 (1972) I got myself a kids book about astronomy and space travel. The sheer beauty of the Universe got a hold on me then and never again left me to this day. I remember most fondly that that book described Halley's comet and that it would return in 1986. I promised myself I …

Madison Twp. church leader accused of using parishioner's ID

The pastor of a Madison Township church faces charges in Painesville Municipal Court that he used the identity of a member of his congregation to procure prescription pain medication.

According to Lt. Ed Ebert of the Lake County Narcotics Agency, the Rev. David S. Reed, 38, of 6124 Maxwell Drive, Madison Township, is charged with three fifth-degree felony counts of deception to obtain a dangerous drug and three first-degree misdemeanor counts of identity fraud.

Reed is pastor of Chapel United Methodist Church, 2019 Hubbard Road.

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Bail set for pastor in abuse case

A Long Island pastor accused of repeatedly sexually abusing his three teenage daughters at their Queens home was held on $10,000 bail set Friday in Queens Criminal Court, authorities said.

Before Judge Alex J. Zigman, the pastor pleaded not guilty to two counts of second-degree sexual abuse, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child and four counts of incest.

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Pastor accused of illegally harvesting sharks

The pastor of a Bay Area church, four men in the aquarium industry and a commercial fisherman were indicted on federal charges of illegally catching and selling hundreds of juvenile leopard sharks, prosecutors said Wednesday.

The indictment charged Kevin Thompson, 48, pastor of the Bay Area Family Church in San Leandro, and the five others with selling 465 leopard sharks that were too small to harvest to pet distributors throughout the United States, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

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The Challenge to any Fundementalist Chrsitain reading this

sent in by Mike

Lots of you think that the ex-Christians on this site are either running from God or have given up because they want to be 'in the world' in order to sin. You just can't get your heads round the fact that the Bible is full of holes, and that we haven't 'chosen' to disbelieve. Instead we disbelieve because once you read the Bible you realise that it is full of holes. I have three types of problems with the Bible, and I challenge the Christians to explain them, without resorting to personal attacks such as "If you were a real Christian, you wouldn't need to ask these questions".

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Church arson follows pastor's arrest

SALISBURY -- State investigators have ruled arson as the cause of a fire at a Mount Hermon Road church, only days after one of its pastors was accused of having an improper relationship with a minor in the congregation.

The Maryland State Fire Marshal's Office said the 10:47 p.m. Friday fire at New Life the Apostolic Church was started when somebody went into the church and ignited flammable material.

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Pastor Accused Of Throwing Puppies From Pickup Truck

A Springfield Fla. pastor was arrested and charged with animal cruelty after a witness told police he saw the pastor throwing puppies from a pickup truck

Robert Tiencken said he saw Vincent Kohn, pastor of The Anointed Church of God, throwing several puppies into the woods and leaving them to die.

"He was actually throwing them, not setting them down, but throwing them as far as the trees. Just chucking them," Tiencken said. "He said, 'I told my wife. You don't have to call the police. You don't have to call them.'"

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Ripon man jailed for church sale

This is a follow-up to the article posted here.

A Ripon pastor accused of selling the town’s oldest church pleaded guilty to embezzlement on Monday and agreed to 16 months in prison, court officials said.

Randall Radic, 53, entered his plea in San Joaquin County Superior Court as part of a deal in which prosecutors agreed to drop nine other charges.

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Ironic Ignorance: B.C. Cartoonist Gets Laughs, All Right!

© 2006 Tim Simmons

Most people know that a light year is not a measurement of time but a measurement of distance. It is the distance light would travel if it was allowed to travel unabated for a year. Even grade school children learn these types of things by the sixth grade but apparently science wasn’t one of Johnny Hart’s favorite subjects in school.

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Mike Shermer/Kent Hovind

Here's a video that was produced to promote Creationism, but I thought it interesting, and sad.

The players? Mike Shermer & Kent Hovind. The location? The Physical Sciences Lecture Hall on the campus of the University of California, Irvine. The date? April 29, 2004.

Over 500 people jammed into a 400-seat venue. Shermer was there at the behest of Pastor Jason, of the OMC Youth, a campus Christian organization

For those who don't know, Mike Shermer is the chief editor of Skeptic Magazine (website:www.skeptic.com) and Kent Hovind is a Christian Apologist (website:www.drdino.com).

For Shermer's comments following this debate, click here: LINK
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Just shake your head and nod

sent in by John

I grew up in a strick Catholic household. The pressures to live the Christian life are so powerful it's actually amazing that some of us come to the realization and reject it. I can remember times in my life where I was scared about going to hell. I remember feeling so alone during those times. I recall thinking, "I don't deserve to go to hell. What have I done to deserve it?"

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The importance of evidence

sent in by Joshua

Some friends of mine have posted on this site and asked that I do the same. So, here is my story.

I grew up in Kansas. Christianity and church were a big part of my life. From the time I was very young I enjoyed church, Sunday school, singing hymns, and reading my children's Bible. When I went to college, I immediately joined a Bible study group and had an instant group of close friends. I felt that the people around me were good honest and hard working people. Christians like me wanted nothing more than strong marriages, well behaved children, good neighborhoods and good schools.

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Total Believer to Total Bullshit (now with less calories)

sent in by Joey JoeJoe Shabadoo

Well, it's been a long road and I imagine it will only get longer. All of this started when I was very young and as far back as I can remember my parents took me to the local Lutheran Church every Sunday (Missouri Synod - very traditional). The only way of not going was to be deathly ill. I don't remember ever being thrilled about going to church except to play with a couple kids that also went there. Going to church on Sunday morning was so ingrained into me that to not go just felt weird and strange.

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