Excommunication
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25-03-2016, 06:36 PM
Excommunication
Not sure where else to put this, but here seems to be the best fit, so here goes.
I was baptized into my parent's church at age two and attended regularly until I was in college. In the middle of that, when I was 14 I made my public profession of faith after meeting withe the elders and became a communicate member. Part of this was due to the shame that I felt when all my friends who had professed their faith already and were allowed to take communion while I had to sit there, still a "child"; I was given the impression that god wouldn't view me as an adult until I made my full profession.
However, at the time I did also think that I was truly a believer and one of the elect. The only way I could prove this was by professing myself as such.
So I did. For a few years it was fine, I was a member in good standing, and as far as I know I still am.
But I'm also a professing atheist who doesn't believe in virtually anything that is in my church's confession/creeds/dogma. I feel like having my name on the records is a blatant lie and I don't want to be a liar. I've come out to my friends and family, but not explicitly to my church "family". If I was to come out to them, I'd have to go through the entire excommunication process before being announced from the pulpit as an apostate (and most likely becoming a long-term member of their weekly prayer list). This would destroy my mother, since my dad was excommunicated after their divorce and it traumatized her immensely. I also don't want their pity and condescension.
So, in your opinion, should I just let sleeping dogs lie and remain a member until they contact me (or don't)? Or should I tell them the truth? I don't like living dishonestly, and a part of me feels that I am.
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25-03-2016, 06:44 PM
RE: Excommunication
I am sure the Catholic church still has me on their roles as a member. I don't care what they think. It isn't affecting me in any way other than I get pleas for money from the Catholic high school I attended. I glance at whatever they send because sometimes there are pictures from my high school days. Then whatever it is goes in the trash. I have other things to worry about. I left them behind decades ago...if they can't let me go it's their problem.

The only thing I can see as a negative is that still being on their list increases the count in their favor.

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF

We're all mad here. The Cheshire Cat
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25-03-2016, 06:46 PM
RE: Excommunication
(25-03-2016 06:44 PM)Anjele Wrote:  I am sure the Catholic church still has me on their roles as a member. I don't care what they think. It isn't affecting me in any way other than I get pleas for money from the Catholic high school I attended. I glance at whatever they send because sometimes there are pictures from my high school days. Then whatever it is goes in the trash. I have other things to worry about. I left them behind decades ago...if they can't let me go it's their problem.

The only thing I can see as a negative is that still being on their list increases the count in their favor.

Their god is so incredibly powerful that his minions still send out letters begging for money.

Marburg virus, Ebola, Rabies, HIV, Smallpox, Hantavirus, Dengue Fever all brought to you by god - who cares for us and loves us all Censored
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25-03-2016, 06:53 PM
RE: Excommunication
(25-03-2016 06:46 PM)god has no twitter account Wrote:  
(25-03-2016 06:44 PM)Anjele Wrote:  I am sure the Catholic church still has me on their roles as a member. I don't care what they think. It isn't affecting me in any way other than I get pleas for money from the Catholic high school I attended. I glance at whatever they send because sometimes there are pictures from my high school days. Then whatever it is goes in the trash. I have other things to worry about. I left them behind decades ago...if they can't let me go it's their problem.

The only thing I can see as a negative is that still being on their list increases the count in their favor.

Their god is so incredibly powerful that his minions still send out letters begging for money.

Nearly every month.

The fun thing about the Catholics is that they are okay with gambling. Often the plea is in the form of raffle tickets. And usually once the raffle is over the winner is lauded for donating their winnings to the church.

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF

We're all mad here. The Cheshire Cat
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25-03-2016, 07:22 PM
RE: Excommunication
(25-03-2016 06:53 PM)Anjele Wrote:  The fun thing about the Catholics is that they are okay with gambling. Often the plea is in the form of raffle tickets.

And bingo. Oh, my, Catholics and bingo...
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26-03-2016, 01:11 AM
RE: Excommunication
I didn't bothered with apostasy as I don't feel that shamanic ritual called baptism is in any way binding. So I see no reason for you to contacting them.

The first revolt is against the supreme tyranny of theology, of the phantom of God. As long as we have a master in heaven, we will be slaves on earth.

Mikhail Bakunin.
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26-03-2016, 02:10 AM
RE: Excommunication
If the only thing you can gain from talking to them is your mother being traumatized, then -by all means- dont do it.

If you are "not closeted" ( read: professing) anymore you are already honest, with yourself and society. No need to tell anyone, especially in your church that you are an atheist. Dont worry, its their scenario that makes it hard for you to be open to them, so not your fault in any way.
So why bother talking to a bunch of deluded and morally bancrupt people about your membership? I bet their list of members already contains lots of atheists. And even if.....they would twist facts and/or make up shit anyway, wont they?

Just leave them behind. Maybe there will come a time when its time for you to tell them without having to fear consequences.
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26-03-2016, 02:12 AM
RE: Excommunication
Quote:Their god is so incredibly powerful that his minions still send out letters begging for money.

I wouldt call "give me money or burn in hell" *begging* to be honest. Wink
Wouldnt "blackmail" fit much better?
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26-03-2016, 04:56 AM
RE: Excommunication
I hate that religion creates real bonds based on really what amounts to superstition. This doesn't just happen with Catholics or "excommunication". When a member of the family dissents from the social norm, the other members see that as a threat. It is an evolutionary flaw based on gap filling and false perceptions. Getting thrown out of a church is like getting thrown out of Star Trek fan club because you say the show didn't invent cell phones. The problem with religion is the majority creates bonds with it's members and dissent is seen as a threat to the social norms.

But this fear of a minority has always existed, and group survival is part of the primate/mammal evolution. Unfortunately religion is a projection of human qualities on non existent things. Muslims living in America are feared by non Muslims. Muslims trying to leave Islam have a hard time leaving. But even in India and Sikhs and Hindus bucking a social norm especially with family is hard on the one doing it.

Our species isn't doing this because there is a real god, or that any one religion is true, we do this in reality because those gap answers provide safety in numbers and thus provide us with more opportunity at resources and lead to more offspring. This kind of rejection of dissent has always existed and still does today in every nation in every religion worldwide to a greater or lesser degree.

My X-wife is Japanese, and while we consider Japan our allies, they also fear integration. The majority group will at best like you as a guest, but when you try to integrate or dissent or leave, that majority reacts to the change. Unfortunately humans hide behind labels which allows us to treat others as less than, or house guests at best.

Having said that, only YOU know your comfort level. It amounts to what you are willing to live with. It does not have to be a war if you do tell them, but it also does not mean you don't have a right to be open. I will say this, NOBODY has a right to suck the emotional life out of you, on any issue, including religion. I dumped a girlfriend a long time ago because she was mentally abusive and only had to hit me once. I also cut off my older brother, because he was always "Jesus doomsday" about everything I did, but that was in combo with lying to me trying to steal from me and physically threatened me.

I am not saying any of that to scare you, only you know your family. Whatever you decide to do, if you want to make it work, then if you do tell them, remind them you still love them, and if they keep bringing it up, just tell them it might be best if you don't discuss it. But they don't have a right to treat you like a doormat. Only you know them, so only you can tell if it is worth it or not.

I can say for many, including my younger sister, who came out, it was a shock to our family, but that was years ago, I am sure they still don't like her being an atheist, but she's been doing really well so it is hardly discussed now. It does take time for family to adjust to change. But again, only you can tell.

Poetry by Brian37(poems by an atheist) Also on Facebook as BrianJames Rational Poet and Twitter Brianrrs37
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26-03-2016, 04:59 AM
RE: Excommunication
Excommunication process? That is the church's superstition, not yours. It is no different than leaving a bad movie, just leave. What silly superstitions they "inflict" on you has no affect in reality. That is their baggage, not yours. The only real thing you have to deal with are humans and how they react once you leave, but their "excommunication" is no more real than a Voodoo doll.

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