home
RSS
Godless mom strikes a chord with parents
A CNN iReport essay on raising kids without God draws record-breaking number of comments.
January 18th, 2013
06:32 PM ET

Godless mom strikes a chord with parents

By Daphne Sashin, CNN

Deborah Mitchell remembers the time, when her boys were younger, and another mom asked her about her religious beliefs.

Mitchell was raised Catholic but moved away from religion in her early 20s. She told the other mother that she didn’t go to church and didn’t even really believe in God.

Then, she says, the recruiting started.

“She used to call my house and tell me she was praying for me. She’d leave me messages and leave cards in my mailbox with scripture,” Mitchell says. “I do realize that she meant well, but at the same time, I know my views were seen as wrong. I needed to be ‘saved.’”

Mitchell, a mother of two teenagers in Texas who feels “immersed in Christianity,” started a blog about raising her children without religion because she felt frustrated and marginalized. She didn’t want to feel so alone, she says.

This week, she gained a whole new audience and the reassurance that she's not alone. Her essay on CNN iReport, “Why I Raise My Children Without God,” drew 650,000 page views, the second highest for an iReport, and the most comments of any submission on the citizen journalism platform.

It starts:

When my son was around 3 years old, he used to ask me a lot of questions about heaven. Where is it? How do people walk without a body? How will I find you? You know the questions that kids ask.

For over a year, I lied to him and made up stories that I didn’t believe about heaven. Like most parents, I love my child so much that I didn’t want him to be scared. I wanted him to feel safe and loved and full of hope. But the trade-off was that I would have to make stuff up, and I would have to brainwash him into believing stories that didn’t make sense, stories that I didn’t believe either.

Mitchell posted the essay detailing her seven reasons for raising her children without God on CNN iReport because she felt there wasn’t anyone else speaking for women or moms like her. As she sees it, children should learn to do the right things because they will feel better about themselves, not because God is watching. She asks questions like: If there was a good, all-knowing, all-powerful God, why would he allow murders, child abuse and torture?

Lots of people disagreed with her. Tons. They flagged her iReport as inappropriate and criticized CNN for linking to her essay on the CNN.com homepage. But there were plenty of others who wrote thoughtful rebuttals, respectfully disagreeing with Mitchell while not foisting their own beliefs on her. Take, for instance, a Methodist dad, who said faith can be hard to nail down, but “not to avail ourselves of the power of something we don't completely understand is silly.”

Others said Mitchell presented a simplistic view of religion.

“Presentations such as these seem to ignore a substantial percentage of believers - well-educated, compassionate, liberal folk, Christian and non-Christian alike - who, I feel, are able to worship without being blind to the realities of the world, or without lying to their children about their understanding of these complexities,” wrote commenter RMooradian. “I'll be raising my children with God, but I understand those who cannot!”

But Mitchell’s essay also struck a chord with hundreds of like-minded parents raising children in a world where lack of belief puts them in the minority, often even in their own family.

“Thank you for writing this. I agree with everything you say, but I’m not brave enough to tell everyone I know this is how I feel,” a woman who called herself an “agnostic mommy of two in Alabama” posted in the comments. “Thank you for your bravery and letting me know I’m not alone.”

It’s a growing group. One in five Americans is not affiliated with any religion, and that number has grown by 25% in the past five years, according to a survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. Of that group, 88% said they were not looking for religion, although 68% of the unaffiliated said they believe in God. 

Brittany Branyon, an American graduate student and substitute teacher living in Germany, was also compelled to express her thanks to Mitchell. Branyon was raised Southern Baptist in Georgia and Alabama. In high school, when she began to question the theory of creation and befriended gay and lesbian students, she says her mother tried to perform an exorcism.

“She opened all the windows and doors in the house, brought me to the door, held my shoulders and shook me while screaming, ‘Satan, get out of this child!’, ‘Satan, leave this child alone!’.”

After moving away from the South, she and her husband “became more comfortable in our secular ways,” but still take criticism from family members. They are now expecting their first child.

“Though we are elated to welcome our child into the world, we can’t help but dread the religious uproar that is to come from our families,” she wrote in an e-mail.

Such an uproar is familiar to Carol Phillips, a stay-at-home mother in northern Virginia. When she gave birth to her first child, she said her family was shocked that the baby wasn’t baptized. She said her mother-in-law cried and told her the little girl’s soul would not go to heaven.

Then there are the comments from strangers. Last year, Phillips said she and her daughter were at a birthday party when a tornado warning sounded.

“We were all in the basement keeping safe. A little girl was saying baby Jesus will keep us safe. My daughter asked who Jesus was. The rest of the time was spent hearing ‘I'll pray for you sweetie, we can take you to church with us if you want,’” Phillips told CNN.

Commenting on Mitchell’s iReport, Phillips said, “To live out loud and to speak freely about my beliefs brings many clucking tongues. I would think it’s easier to come out as gay than atheist.”

Mitchell said she spent years studying the history of religion and does believe it has “an important place in our community.” She has told her children that she’ll be fine if they decide to join a church when they are older.

She ended her essay:

I understand why people need God. I understand why people need heaven. It is terrifying to think that we are all alone in this universe, that one day we—along with the children we love so much—will cease to exist. The idea of God and an afterlife gives many of us structure, community and hope.

I do not want religion to go away. I only want religion to be kept at home or in church where it belongs. It’s a personal effect, like a toothbrush or a pair of shoes. It’s not something to be used or worn by strangers. I want my children to be free not to believe and to know that our schools and our government will make decisions based on what is logical, just and fair—not on what they believe an imaginary God wants.

After her post ran on CNN, Mitchell said she was encouraged by the number of people who agreed with her, or who disagreed but wanted to have a respectful discussion.

“I’m not saying that everybody should think how I do. I’m saying the people that do should have a place in our society and have acceptance and respect,” she said. “I just want to have children grow up and be able to not be afraid to say ‘I don’t believe that,’ or ‘I’m not part of that.’” 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Christianity • Faith Now • iReport

soundoff (15,081 Responses)
  1. Katrina

    There is a difference between having *religion* in your life and a personal relationship with God. I have found that life without God (and yes, there was a time I turned my back)...was more difficult than with God. At least now...I have hope & faith and know that this time earth is nothing compared to the heaven we will see one day.

    January 19, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
    • Damocles

      So you reject hope in this life and are googly-eyed for something after this life. You are hopeless.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
    • TBM

      Just because you close your eyes and say "there is a heaven!, there is a heaven!, there is a heaven!, there is a heaven!!" does not make heaven real.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
    • End Religion

      Kat, this is why religion is a delusion. You cannot handle reality. You prefer the security blanket of a promise of an afterlife. You prefer fantasy. Great. Please don't join any efforts to have legislation foisted onto the U.S. based on the fantasy.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • Wow...

      yes its called being agnostic

      January 19, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
    • sam stone

      katrina: if you are certain of eternity in heaven, why wait?

      January 19, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
  2. Lemaitre

    NEWSFLASH: Woman left faith in her 20's. Thought to be first recorded evidence of a 20-something knowing more than everyone else!

    January 19, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • End Religion

      Lema,

      Please join me in praising Elephus, the purple polka-dotted elephant god who pinched her trunk and farted us into existence. She is the one true god, and the path to her exists only through obeying my word, her right hand man and appointed prophet. We celebrate her appropriately on St. Elephus Day by wearing wrinkly grey boots and an elephant mask while prancing through the streets showering with pink and brown confetti those gathered to bear witness to her godliness.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
    • Lemaitre

      Good luck!

      January 19, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Billy

      NEWFLASH – Lemaitre d only seems to know how to serve up hot air.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
    • Wow...

      Hahahaha nice come back Lemaitre did it take all three of your brain cells to think of that? Maybe if you say a prayer and a few hail mary's you can get a better one :D

      January 19, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
  3. Gene Grubb

    I have been a Christian for 41 years now, and I am slowly becoming more like Jesus. I may need another 100 or 200 years at this pace. I would just like to say that I have been through many of the phases that people have described in CNN blogs when complaining about Christians. I have been a stupid Christian, an overzealous Christian, a well-meaning Christian, a hypocritical Christian, an intolerant Christian, a make-something-up-that-sounds-pious-if-you-don't-really-know Christian. None of these ugly distortions can be blamed on Jesus, but rather on human weakness. I would like to apologize for all the dumb things that Christians have said in ignorance, over-zealousness, or whatever. I do not have all the answers but I have a relationship with God thanks to Jesus' work on my behalf, and He has chosen to entrust myself and other fallable but willing persons to spread His message. I can reassure you that God is light and in Him is no darkness. God cares more than we do. He has intervened and does intervene in human affairs. He has chosen to work through His Word by which He brought his Son into the World to save us all from sin's curse. Our job is to trust what God has said and what He does say through His servants. You may not like the messenger, but you had better pay attention to the witness of God's Spirit in your heart that accompanies the truth spoken in love. You will answer for it. The Bible is truth. Just like with any natural law, it can work for you or against you. Don't blame people or God for your troubles; get into the Bible (start with the New Testament) and get into harmony with it. Thanks for reading.

    January 19, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • Damocles

      Ok. First of all, if your deity is everything it has to have a dark side as well, otherwise it isn't everything. Secondly, you have not gotten away from the judgemental believer atti-tude when you start off saying 'you better believe or else....'.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Wow...

      Thats a really deep point actually. How can God have created everything, evil included, but not be evil as well. Hmmmm although the Christian sheep answer is we don't fully understand everyhting about God blah blah blah *translated* we have no ide about who we are worshipping.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
    • Damocles

      @wow

      It's one of my main disagreements with believers. They toss around words like 'eternal' or 'all everything' without realizing what they mean.

      You can't say a deity is everything and then start trying to take everything away from it. An everything deity would be insane, wouldn't be able to do anything, make a choice. It would destroy as quickly as it made. Deific pantheons make more sense, a deity for war, a deity for peace etc etc.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
  4. Steve K

    The religion requiring the most faith by far is Atheism

    January 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • Billy

      Someone doesn't know very much about atheism. Gee – I wonder who that could possibly be? . . .

      January 19, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      And the liver requiring the most disgruntled jellyfish is happy to engage in direct porridge with Mel Gibson's vest.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • Damocles

      Surely you have more than this to offer?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • TBM

      Ummm No! Atheism is the lack of religion. ...What do you call someone that does not collect stamps?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • Damocles

      An astampist?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
    • Jim

      Calling atheism a "religion" is like calling not playing tennis, a sport.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
    • James

      It is actually very liberating to be an atheist. No need to get up and go to church and live your life as a puppet. Very easy to live a good life without believing in god. I do it everyday. I don't need to know that there is a heaven or hell. Those are stories like Santa Claus designed to give us hope in this crazy world. I mean seriously, we shun magic everywhere pretty much everywhere else as being fake except for when it comes ot this. Witches can't ride on broomsticks, yet dead people can live in clouds. It is beyond silly yet people latch on to it because it gives them hope that after they live their life that they can come back to life. So what's the point really? Just makes people feel better about death is all it really does.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
  5. Truth1117

    So...answering your kid's questions about Heaven was hard, so you decided to keep it from them? And are now demanding that everyone else conform to your beliefs and not be who they are in public?

    Sounds about right. Go USA! Lol.

    January 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      But chickens dangle their errant remote controlled milk cartons to avoid paying tax on their bed linen.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • Pete

      " And are now demanding that everyone else conform to your beliefs and not be who they are in public? "

      We already have it's why prayer is no longer allowed in school. Your beliefs hold no value just like all the religions in human history.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
    • TBM

      No! it was hard to lie to her kids, so she decided not to lie.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Truth1117

      Prayer is still allowed in school. Just can't be LED by a school employee.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
    • Pete

      The U.S. Supreme Court has been vigilant in forbidding public schools and other agencies of the government to interfere with Americans' constitutional right to follow their own consciences when it comes to religion. In 1962, the justices ruled that official prayer had no place in public education.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
    • Piperman

      If you'd really read the article you would know that she DOESN;T demand tha everybody do what she does.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
    • Riddles

      Seems you didn't read the article, they never said that others should have to bring up their kids this way.

      Also religion is a complicated and personal thing which should wait until a person can understand it, not forced on them when they will believe anything.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
    • Mike

      Hi Truth: I don't think she is requiring anyone else to believe the way she does. I would like to add to what I've already said about this blog/essay. God is God...and just because someone doesn't believe doesn't mean He's going to go away. He owns this universe...He created it. The great litmus test will come on the day His son returns to judge the living and the dead. That day is coming and no amount of disbelief...or legislation separating church from state...is going to stop it.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • Truth1117

      Yep. Again, can't be led by a school employee. Prayer still happens everyday in schools, and the schools still currently allow students to meet on behalf of organizations like Athletes for Christ or Youth for Christ to pray together in classrooms before school starts. Several kids from our church are doing that at school once per week.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
    • Jim

      Show me where in that article she demands that everyone believe as she does? Oh why do I bother; religious people can't even read the words of their own bible without turning it inside out in order to serve their idea of what the religion is.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
    • Truth1117

      No, as she ends her article, she wants people to take in her belief that religion should be kept at home or in church, like a toothbrush: "I only want religion to be kept at home or in church where it belongs. It’s a personal effect, like a toothbrush or a pair of shoes. It’s not something to be used or worn by strangers."

      So, yes, she wants those who do believe to not be who they are outside of their home or church. It's not an activity....it's a way of life.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • James

      What can she tell him? There is no evidence of heaven so what make up any old answer? Well I suppose that we lie to our kids about Santa, tooth fairy etc so why not god too.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Truth1117

      She could start by explaining that Heaven is a place where Christians believe they go when they die.

      Instead of telling Christians to stop being who they are in public. She can also be who she wants to be public and we can live peacefully. Quite simply, she appears very intolerant.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
  6. Cornelius

    Deborah Mitchell is like many others around the world that are totally confused about life, and who this God is... Religion is design by mankind and try to allow themselves to express his or her way to reach/please The Holy Creator in whom we call God. Where God who has a name has a open door of salvation through His Son Jesus Christ who died on a cross for Deborah Mitchell's soul and many others who are totally misled about who the Lord is really!!!! The Lord is not religulous. He only looks at the hearts of men. Mankind is evil and corrupt with in. That is why sin and death is in the world. Mankind needs to realize that we are sinful creatures. We chose the path of wickedness and death by not accepting our loving Creator as Lord!!! Like I said without reservation God whom we call who has a Name that Deborah Mitchell is confuse like others are. But the Lord loves each and everyone of us. You know that is true!! If not, then someday you will find out for sure!! : )

    His Servant,

    January 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • Pete

      "Where God who has a name has a open door of salvation through His Son Jesus Christ who died on a cross for Deborah Mitchell's soul and many others who are totally misled about who the Lord is really!!!"

      Religion is a man-made concept and so is the story of Jesus, none of it's true, just like all the thousands of religions and gods that came before it.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Cornelius", but "God", "The Holy Creator", "salvation", "His Son", "Christ", "Lord", "Creator", and "His" are all elements of mythology, therefore your assertions are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your unfounded assertions may represent truths is: "EPIC FAIL".

      January 19, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Wow...

      You're wrong again. Religion was made to make people (like yourself) believe in a bunch of stupid man made rules to pacify you... just like you are. Why else would the Bible say to pay unto Cesar what is his i.e. pay your taxes, or to give money to the church? because its a man made falisy that you are buying into (literaly) like a fool

      January 19, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
    • James

      Such BS. Go live in your heaven forever where you will do nothing except worship your god. Imagine doing that every day all day, with no end ever. After a couple hundred years I would bet that you'd get tired of it. Plus you'll have all of your crazy relatives around provided that you can find them. What if you get to heaven and your spouse wasn't good enough to get in? Your children? Live forever and ever with that torment. Enjoy yourself.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
  7. Lemaitre

    NEWSFLASH: Atheists flock to Belief blog to spew hatred. CNN execs "shocked"

    January 19, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
    • Religion Is Dangerous For Children And Other Living Creatures

      NEWSFLASH: Believers throwing a tantrum (again) because others don't believe in their religion. Update at 10.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Pooing on turtles is only acceptable every previous Monday.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • Pete

      "Atheists flock to Belief blog to spew hatred. "

      more lies from the xtians – 122!

      January 19, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • Riddles

      Do you always perceive opposing views as hatred?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
    • James

      It's not hatred. It is reality.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
  8. Free Nuts

    Front page of CNN just checked chimps show morals go figure .
    Aren't humans suppose to be the only living things with morals ?

    Big Bang!

    January 19, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • Lemaitre

      What about the Big Bang?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • Truth1117

      You know...they crazy theory about how there was nothing, then nothing exploded to create everything?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • Lemaitre

      Oh that one. Well that should explain chimps with morals!

      January 19, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
    • Truth1117

      So there are natural moral absolutes. There is right and wrong.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
    • Pete

      "You know...they crazy theory about how there was nothing, then nothing exploded to create everything?"

      Oh, yeah mean like your god that was created from nothing then created everything from nothing?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • Truth1117

      YES. It takes FAR more faith to believe that nothing caused an explosion that created everything, than it does to believe that God has always been, and created the universe and all of its laws.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
    • Pete

      ", than it does to believe that God has always been, and created the universe and all of its laws."

      What created your god?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
    • Damocles

      @truth

      So the deity came from the nothing that you say can't make anything and then did what? Make everything from the nothing that still existed. Interesting.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
    • Truth1117

      God has always been.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
    • James

      Yeah, supposedly. Eventually all animals will evolve to that point. Humans just got their first. Someday dolphin Jesus will roam the oceans until the sun burns out and the earth freezes over and falls out of its orbit and then becomes part of another planet.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • Damocles

      Matter has always been.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • Pete

      "God has always been."

      There are parts of the universe has always been.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
    • James

      I see. So god was just chilling one day and said, you know what I am bored so I am going to create a bunch of stuff to entertain me. Among them will be human souls, which will hang with me all day long. But wait, one of you sould is trippin so you can't hang anymore. Oh, and the only way that you can get to come back to see me if if I send my son and you follow him, even after they crucify him. Then, and only then can you come back. And only if you believe and give all of your belongings away. Oh, by the way, if you don;t do what I say I am going to burn your a$$ in hell.

      That story makes you want to go hang out FOREVER with this? That sounds bat sh$t crazy to me.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • Truth1117

      But we know that's not true outside of help from a deity.

      Our own scientific laws state that everything has to have a cause (law of causality). So scientifically speaking, nothing could have always been. But, God doesn't conform to those laws...he created them.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
    • Pete

      "So scientifically speaking, nothing could have always been. But, God doesn't conform to those laws...he created them."

      There are parts of the universe that don't conform to those laws either, but I think eventually we will get to understand it better in time. Parts of the universe have just always been.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
    • Damocles

      So you try to use a law to explain why there is a deity and then say the deity does not have to conform to that law. Priceless.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
    • Truth1117

      No, I said that God has always been and created the entire universe and all of it's laws a long time ago in this discussion. Then, science was brought in to refute my belief when someone stated that parts of the universe have always been (implying that there was something before the Big Bang to cause it). When in actuality, scientific laws have already ruled out this possibility due to the Law of Causality. Nothing that exists (outside of a deity) has always been. God created those laws.

      Context.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
    • Anthony

      "When in actuality, scientific laws have already ruled out this possibility due to the Law of Causality. Nothing that exists (outside of a deity) has always been. God created those laws. "

      Nope, matter has always been and no god created anything, you have no proof your god created any laws because in order to do that man had to create the laws to apply them to all gods. Give it time we will understand but you'll be worm food by then.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:56 pm |
    • Pete

      Good point Anthony.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:58 pm |
    • Damocles

      Ahhh I gotcha.... the laws it made, it doesn't have to conform to them. So if you are the one that made the drunk driving laws, you can drive drunk all day long. Pretty swell deal for the lawmaker.

      January 19, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
  9. Rainer Braendlein

    Leave American Capitalism, Islam or Catholicsim and join the loveable Jesus who will once return, and be our righteous Judge!!! Mohammed and the popes were forerunners of the Antichrist but the American Capitalism is his true reign.

    The good old faith of Jesus doesn't say: "you need to be saved!" but says: "you need to behave Christian daily in the releasing power of Jesus death and resurrection!".

    Today many members of the mainline churches only know that they could behave Christian in Jesus' power but they don't do it. What is the reason why? Well, it is a multilayered problem. Maybe they did not really repent, or they don't really understand the Christian doctrine. Repentance is necessary, and a correct understanding of the doctrine is sufficient to achieve a successful life of faith which causes real Christian behaviour in daily life.

    There is a paradox: The more sb. repents the more he feels his sinfulness. The one who has repented will cry for a Redeemer who gives him the power to overcome the lust of his body and the hatred against God and his fellow human beings.

    What is the locus in space and time where we receive the releasing power of Jesus death and resurrection? It is the sacramental baptism which was insti-tuted by Christ himself (not by the unholy, Catholic pope-rat). The sacramental baptism (also infant baptism) is the locus where Jesus death and resurrection get made present. The metaphysical side of Jesus' sacrifice you cannot grasp by reason but only by supernatural faith, and this faith must be caused by the Holy Spirit. God has laid it out like this that the receiving of the faith or the Spirit is connected with the Holy Baptism which is not allowed to be repeated. Through faith and baptism we get metaphysically connected with Christ's sacrifice.

    The only things which a Christian should practice daily in order to make visible Christ's power are fasting and prayer or prayer and fasting. If we do this things we act diametrically opposed to the lust of our body (the sin dwells in our limbs). If we fast and pray, Jesus' power will change our life, and we will overcome the lust, and love God and our neighbour. We will love our neighbour with an unbiased love.

    However, we can nothing add on to Christ's redemption. Prayer and fasting are not more than a serious "yes, I will!" to Christ's deliverance.

    January 19, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
    • WaitForIt

      "We will love our neighbour with an unbiased love."

      So that means you'll allow gays and lesbians to get married?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Rainer Braendlein", but "God" and "Holy* " are elements of mythology, therefore your repeated assertions are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your repeated unfounded assertions may represent truths is: "CHRONIC EPIC FAIL". Perhaps the following book can help you cope with the problem of repeating unfounded assertions:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to...

      January 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • Koty

      Would you send your child to the pit of fire for not beliving in what you believe? A simple question you can surly answer with out the ifs and or buts? regardless if your a parent or not at the moment would you damn your kid to hell for not beliving in what you believe?

      January 19, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      @WaitForIt

      No, I would tell them they should repent.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • Just a John

      And old Ratzinger loves you righr back, Rainman, pucker up.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
    • sam stone

      Rainy is yet another bigot hiding behind a bible.

      January 19, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
  10. jess boldt

    And so the internet battle of religion begins again... but maybe this time one side will win and it won't be just people shoving their ideology (religious or non) in people's faces to make themselves feel better.. Just maybe.

    January 19, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
  11. Lemaitre

    NEWSFLASH: Liberals and atheists prefer CNN.

    January 19, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      But horses and lamps prefer satire.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
    • Billy

      Lemaitre d is good at serving up hot air.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • Roger that

      That's old news. If you prefer to be lied to, then I suggest trying Fox News.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
  12. Koty

    There is one simple reason that is very logical why I do not believe in god or gods. Why would "god" send his childeren who he made in his own image to eternal damnation for no believing in the words he speaks? Would you parents out there kill your kids and throw them in an inferno for choosing not to follow your beliefs? Religon was made to enslave masses of peoples minds. People can believe what they want, but I choose not to believe in an obvious lie.

    January 19, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
  13. jay

    Heathens... you will all pay for your sins!

    January 19, 2013 at 2:57 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Heather, you will pay for all your cola lest you anger Cthulhu's chimpanzee accomplice, Smeggsy the chimp.

      January 19, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
  14. Lemaitre

    NEWSFLASH: Mother abdicates the raising of her children to TV and public school teachers. Highlights on Springer in 10 years

    January 19, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Seven books gallop through misty pizza towards a hazy mountain of ironic tables.

      January 19, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • Roger that

      It sounds like she is doing a fine job, but I guess she could alternatively teach her kids the Bible and God's way and how r ape is okie dokie in God's eyes.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
  15. stushcr

    She represents a much greater majority then she realizes, including me.

    January 19, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      It's still a tiny minority, sadly. Here anyway, Europe seems to be doing well in its quest to escape religious shackles.

      January 19, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
    • TJ

      And yet that "majority" you speak of is only 15% of this nation. Oops... sorry, 85% identify themselves as "Christians". That other 15% is a mix of other religions, including your religion of Atheism (and it IS a religion).

      So much for your "majority".

      January 19, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • ad-man

      and me too.......

      January 19, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Atheism is a religion like sh!t is Shinola.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
    • TJ

      @Rational Libertarian: I'm sorry, but there is nothing rational about liberaltarians (correct wording), and there is nothing about religion that shackles one. In fact, if it weren't for Christians, you'd not have the right of free speech, or any of your other rights.

      However, if you wish, we can make your rights "alienable", and therefore, they are NOT rights, and never will be.

      Careful what you ask for... you just may receive it.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      TJ

      But surely hamsters divulge as much lemon juice as the next parrot.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
    • Wow...

      Where did you pull that imaginary number from?! 85%?! Bahahahahahaha keep fooling yourself. People who go to church on xmas and easter only im sure say they are Christians but they dont believe or now what they are saying they figure its good to say just in case you know? The people who actually believe in what you do is much smaller and guess what?! YOUR ARE NUCKING FUTS

      January 19, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
    • Wow...

      YOU'RE***

      January 19, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
  16. Saleem Hassan

    This is one way to declare an ungrateful heart in the face of the bestower of a gift. Did she chose to come into this word? Did her kids choose to come into this world? The most sincere answer is NO. Life is a gift of God.

    January 19, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
    • Pete

      " Life is a gift of God."

      No, it's not.

      January 19, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
    • stushcr

      Religion is for those with weak minds and weak morals. It is a crutch without which they would not be able to control their actions nor live a just life.

      January 19, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • archimedes109

      It's a gift from parents.

      January 19, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • Austin

      Unless you have no idea where kids come from, Im pretty sure that life comes as a result of two people's genes mixing and multiplying to create another living being. God has nothing to do with people being born.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
  17. busdriver37

    I was raised in a good ol' god-fearing Catholic home in the Midwest. By 7th grade, in my diocese, our "religion classes" consisted of little other than anti-abortion propaganda.I didn't see where "God" was in all that, so much as politics. But to be honest, I really just never bought into the whole thing – even as a young child I rolled my eyes at every mass, yet my parents still dragged me there every week. I have come to terms with my own status as an atheist, and I don't use "God is watching" as some bogeyman taunt of my kids. I expect my children to be good people because it is the right thing to do. You don't need a god or a religion to be a good person. It's not quite accurate to say I'm raising my children without god; all their friends and most of our social circle are christian, and I have yet to meet a christian who is shy about trying to instill their beliefs on your poor "godless children." (I'm amazed at the number of children at their public school who have invited them to mass.) I still have many frank talks with my children, and they are welcome to explore religions and choose one of their own volition, I just won't be pushing it on them. In the meantime, the book "Parenting Without Belief" is a wonderful read for any atheist or agnostic parent.

    January 19, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
    • Sawmills

      There may be people who appear good on the outside, but think of it this way; how do they KNOW that what they're doing is right or wrong? You can't know without a religion. People whether Christian or not KNOW what is right and wrong because OF religion, specifically Christianity and the Bible.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • Dark Drew

      @Sawmills. really really old Pagan concept that clears this all up, "An it harm NONE, Do what ye will" You don't need organized religion to know the difference of right from wrong.

      January 19, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
  18. Lemaitre

    NEWSFLASH: Mother raises children who are not only fat, but religiously and morally illiterate. Film at 11

    January 19, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Except that so far it looks like it's the churchgoers who are more likely to be obese. Just correlation so far, but a point to ponder:

      http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-03-24/features/chi-religion-and-obesity-can-church-make-you-fat-20110324_1_obesity-religious-groups-church-attendance

      January 19, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
  19. Dark Drew

    This country wasn't built with Christianity as a foundation. It was built with Religious FREEDOM. This passive aggressive assertion that it is, is just plain a lie. Christianity also didn't give mankind law. It was the Sumerian Empire! (otherwise known as the Akkadian empire 2215 BC) . The first written language also comes from here, as does the first laws governing a society. You'll also find a creation story which includes the "great flood" and an immaculate conception (just like Jesus Christ) all 2215 years BEFORE the Christian creation Myth. Not only is Christianity not a foundation or cornerstone of Society (and anywhere it is its been literally usurped or stolen from native cultures wherever their virus has spread). Christmas was once about a jolly man in a red coat giving out toys, and was taken for Christs birthday (not even accurate, apparently he wasn't even born in winter, if he even existed at all.). Christianity HAS been responsible for Wars, Death, Genocide, Poverty, Divisiveness, throughout its history.
    So, No, I don't believe in Christianity, or any other Religion for that matter, in 1000 years, these beliefs wont even be around and will be dismissed as mythology because my hope is that we would have abandoned this viewpoint of what a supreme being truly is. Maybe one day society will realize what I have and just believe in themselves, which was the underlying message behind " God created mankind in his own image." roughly translated/interpreted it means that we are Gods and WE create our own destiny. So my advice is, Believe in yourself. You are a God. You don't need this backwater concept anymore, Society is old enough to make up their own minds.

    January 19, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
    • Yep

      The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature; and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the influence of Heaven, more than those at work upon ships or houses, or laboring in merchandise or agriculture; it will forever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses.

      Thirteen governments [of the original states] thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, and which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favor of the rights of mankind.

      (John Adams, 2nd POTUS, from A Defence of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America [1787-1788])

      January 19, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
    • busdriver37

      And when the Pilgrims fled England to come to the New World, whose persecution were they fleeing? Oh, yeah... the Christians!!!

      January 19, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
    • And Yep

      The Civil Govt, tho' bereft of everything like an associated hierarchy, possesses the requisite stability and performs its functions with complete success, Whilst the number, the industry, and the morality of the Priesthood, & the devotion of the people have been manifestly increased by the total separation of the Church from the State.

      January 19, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • And Yep

      (last quote by James Madison, 4th POTUS chief architect of the U.S. Constitution & Bill of Rights)

      January 19, 2013 at 2:57 pm |
  20. Lemaitre

    NEWSFLASH: Lazy uninformed mother passes on apathy and incuriousness to her children. The good news story on CNN!

    January 19, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
    • orville

      Maybe you could back up your silly opinion in some way?

      January 19, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      But horses do engage in egg smelling during winter breakfast. Cars are extra if credit cards exert yellowish bulls. The spaghetti soapbox in neither here no hair.

      January 19, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
    • Pete

      " Lazy uninformed mother passes on apathy and incuriousness to her children."

      More lying xtians -121!

      January 19, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147

Post a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Advertisement
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.