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Who hears #PrayersForOklahoma?
May 21st, 2013
04:45 PM ET

Who hears #PrayersForOklahoma?

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='BurkeCNN']

(CNN) - God may not notice the thousands of prayers tweeted for victims of Oklahoma’s devastating tornado - but Ricky Gervais sure has. And he is not pleased.

As of Tuesday afternoon, more than 75,000 people have used the hashtag #PrayForOklahoma, including pop starlets, pastors and politicians, according to Topsy.com, a trend-monitoring site.

For example, the White House tweeted,

But the hashtag and the sentiments it promotes prompted a fierce backlash on social media, led by Gervais, a British comedian, and other prominent nonbelievers.

And while one Oklahoma City pastor says he appreciates the Twitter prayers, some religious scholars say devout petitions require more than moving your hands across a keyboard.

"A prayer is supposed to have a consequence for you," said Elizabeth Drescher, a lecturer at Santa Clara University in California. "It's not an act of magic."

Gervais, an ardent foe of organized religion, was more caustic.

After MTV tweeted that pop stars Beyonce, Rihanna and Katy Perry are sending their prayers to Oklahoma, Gervais responded, “I feel like an idiot now … I only sent money.”

Gervais and other atheists also kick-started a counter-trend, using the hashtag #ActuallyDoSomethingForOklahoma.

“If all people are doing is praying, it is worthless,” Hemant Mehta, an Illinois math teacher who writes the blog “Friendly Atheist,” told CNN. “If they are praying and donating to the Red Cross, that’s more like it.”

Mehta is promoting a group called Foundation Beyond Belief that aims to provide a humanist response to crises like the Oklahoma tornado.

The prayer debate spilled into other social media sites as well, with commenters on CNN’s Facebook page sparring over God’s role in Monday’s destructive whirlwind.

According to Oklahoma officials, 24 people have died, many more are injured, and once-orderly streets look likes foretastes of the apocalypse.

In response to a woman who said she was praying for the victims, Facebook commenter Peter Tongue replied, “If prayer works, there wouldn’t be a disaster like this in the first place .... so please keep your religion to yourself.”

But believers had their say as well.

“God is still in control!” said Wilbur Dugger, a commenter on CNN’s Facebook page. “Everything (God) does is to get our attention. … My sympathy and prayers go out to those who get caught up in his demonstrations of (God) ruling the world.”

The social-media sparring over prayer and God’s will reflect a culture in which traditional notions of religion - and the places where people talk about faith - are changing faster than a Twitter feed, said Drescher, the Santa Clara lecturer.

“We’re watching people re-articulate what it means to be spiritual and religious,” she said.

Just a few years ago, for example, no one knew what a hashtag was. Now the “#PrayFor...” meme appears after almost every national and international tragedy.

But what exactly does it mean? Is the tweeting multitude really folding its hands in prayer, or is it a fleeting expression of existential angst? Or maybe just a trendy thing to say?

“It seems to express hope and anxiety, and maybe even helplessness,” Drescher said.

“At the same time, it evokes this strong response from people who see it as a cop-out, a way of claiming some kind of spiritual space that doesn’t actually have any meaning to the people who are posting the meme or the community they are addressing.”

Traditionally, prayer has required something of the pray-er: an orientation toward reverence, a readiness to act, Drescher continued. “You are meant to do something - and that something may not be an easy thing.”

Slapping a hashtag at the end of a tweet doesn’t meet that standard, the scholar said.

The Rev. David Johnson of St. Andrew’s United Methodist Church in Oklahoma City said the prayerful tweets mean something to him - even if he’s been too busy to read them.

Since Monday, St. Andrew’s has become a Red Cross command post and reunion site for families to find loved ones caught in the tornado’s path. The tragedy has also touched the congregation itself, with homes, and some lives, lost on Tuesday, Johnson said.

Told of the Twitter prayers, Johnson said, “that’s awesome.”

“People feel helpless - like God called them to do something but they don’t know what. That’s where prayer comes in.”

Johnson said his church appreciates the many material donations coming its way: the generator sent by a lady from Arkansas, the food and water sent from neighboring towns. But they also solicit, and are happy to receive, the many prayers recited - or tweeted - on their behalf, he said.

“We’ve seen quite a lot of trauma in the last day,” Johnson said. “Obviously, people are going to ask why God allows tornadoes to happen. That’s just part of this world. God doesn’t promise us that bad things won’t happen, he promises to help us get through it. That’s what prayer helps us do.”

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • United States

soundoff (3,515 Responses)
  1. AJR

    No one who understands even the basic premise of evolution has claimed that humans evolved from Monkeys. That is a fallacy.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • Colin

      Indeed. I think the last common ancestor with humans and monkeys lived about 10 million years ago. The last common ancestor of man and chimpanzees lived about 6 million years ago in Africa. Around that time, there was a branching in the evolution of the species and any intermediate species between this last common ancestor and modern man (Ho.mo sapiens) is called a hominid.

      We have found thousands upon thousands of hominid fossils in Ethiopia, Chad, Tanzania, South Africa, Croatia, Isreal, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, Russia, Moldovia, the Ukraine, Java, China, the Phillipines, Iraq, Pakistan and Iran. They tell an interesting tale and show the gradual evolution in "humanness" including bipedalism, tool use, and brain capacity.

      A number of different species of hominids have been identified. Beginning, roughly with the oldest to the newest, these are –
      Sahelanthropus tchadensis
      Australopithecus afarenses
      Australopithecus africanus
      Ho.mo habilus
      Ho.mo ergaster
      Ho.mo erectus
      Ho.mo heidelbergensis
      Ho.mo neanderthalis (Neanderthal man)
      Ho.mo foresiensis
      And us, Ho.mo sapiens.

      The ages of the respective fossils suggest that our immediate ancestor was Ho.mo Erectus and that Ho.mo heidelbergensis, Ho.mo neanderthalis (Neanderthal man) and Ho.mo floresiensis all went extinct. That is to say, they were not in our lineage, they were our “cousins” although some interbreeding may have occurred.

      The above is an over-simplification, omits many other intermediate species and is not without controversy in some areas, but is a useful yardstick to gauge how humans evolved from the last common ancestor we shared with the great apes NOT monkeys.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
  2. mrjackson777

    Why do atheist seem angry at those who believe? And why would anyone assume that if a person prays thats all thier doing? The Bible says "Faith with out works is dead". So yes we defintley should pray, but do someting also. Love is an action word. So act. And lets be honest, most of the tweets with #thoughts and prayers, are psoted from people who are not gonna bend one knee and utter one thing to God.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • dl

      You're right – why would anyone be angry at another person who believes in made up stuff & judges others based on that ... I don't get it

      May 22, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      So you are upset because of how another thinks of you....

      May 22, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
    • ME II

      "Why do atheist seem angry at those who believe?"

      Atheists don't claim anyone is going to burn in hell for eternity... why do believer's seem angry at everyone?

      May 22, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
  3. lol??

    The Master of prayer:

    "Luk 22:44 And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.".

    May 22, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • dl

      Nonesense. Praying to trees and nature is more genuine than praying to some fabled characters from long ago

      May 22, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
  4. adss

    Prayer is for aligning our will with God's will. It's designed to change us, not God.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
  5. Garnet

    Response to Heather about a note from god. Well, if he/she/it were to SIGN the note (preferably with the winning lotto numbers for the next draw) THEN I would certainly believe the note to be genuine!

    May 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
  6. DanH

    Religion is like the "telephone game". The stories that the religious proclaim as proof of god are no more than a way for an uneducated people (6000+ years ago up to within the last few hundred years) to explain the mysteries of the world around them in a way that made sense. These would be "lights in the sky", mysterious healing, why the world works in general.
    Those stories have been passed down, translated, and altered over time to suit whichever group of people was currently hearing them.
    In this day and age where we learn daily the deeper workings of the world around us it is time to start teaching people the facts we know and drop beliefs that where created before science was ever even conceived.
    When religion can provide 1 piece of proof about their claims I will happily listen.
    Prayer is a way to make the individual feel better about what they believe. It does nothing for those being prayed for.
    CNN... please stop even mentioning religion unless the topic is about religion. Im lookin at you Wolf Blizter.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • adss

      Proof is all around you if you care to look. If you don't want to, there is nothing anyone can do, save God himself.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
    • MormonChristian

      So now I am not free to express myself about my beliefs??

      Why do we have to draw these lines around Faith and Reason? I have plenty of friends and family who are Scientists, Engineers, Lawyers, Accountants, who love Astronomy and History. We also believe in God. We're not stupid...we just see things differently. And we have a right to express ourselves.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • mrjackson777

      When Scientist can prove one thing about the origin of man or the creation of the Universe then I'll believe. Funny how a scientist gives us theroy on something works and we're all on it. As anyone ever "seen" a monkey/ape evolve into human? Why did they stop evolving? Are the current apes satisfied and don't wan to evolve?

      May 22, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
    • ME II

      @mrjackson777,
      "When Scientist can prove one thing about the origin of man or the creation of the Universe then I'll believe."

      There is plenty of evidence for the the "origing of man" through evolution, two being the fossil evidence and Human Chromosome 2.

      "As anyone ever 'seen' a monkey/ape evolve into human?"

      Individuals do not evolve; species do. Additionally, it usually takes a very long time.

      "Why did they stop evolving?"

      "they" didn't stop.

      "Are the current apes satisfied and don't wan to evolve?""

      Again individuals don't evolve; species do. Additionally, evolution is not goal oriented, i.e. it is not directed toward something.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
    • Dham

      @adss why dont you share one of those of those examples of "proof all around us"
      If you read what I wrote I even said would gladly listen.
      But your response is the response that every religious person gives "look around".

      May 22, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
    • YouMissedThePoint

      @MrJackson777...Please do not be that ignorant that you will not even entertain the ideas you mock so hastily. Do you honestly believe that when scientist speak of evolution they ment that it happened before someones eyes and thats how we know? It is so rediculous to even pretend thats true let alone actually believe it...we evolved into the creatures we are now from past creatures not so different from us aka primates...that does not mean we are monkeys and even if we were you can sit back and think: "wow the universe is something incredible, it took a primate who could barely use cognitave functions and evolved into the walking talking human being i am now. I dont fully understand why yet but gee its pretty amazing to think we are capable of that over thousands of years"...oh yea and that is way harder to believe than we were just created to be the best species on the planet even though as far as animals go we are weak, hairless, clawless and would be quick food if it wasnt for our brains giving us the power to make tools and weapons.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
    • Dham

      @MormanChristian
      You can believe anything you wish
      The same way I can believe whatever I wish
      The difference being that what you believe has no proof associated with it ( proof meaning that it can be tested and verified by multiple souces)
      When any religion can provide even 1 piece of evidence I will gladly listen.
      A reputable news organization should never bring religion into a story unless the story is about religion or an individuals beliefs.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
    • cedar rapids

      'As anyone ever "seen" a monkey/ape evolve into human? Why did they stop evolving? Are the current apes satisfied and don't wan to evolve?'

      You question shows a fundamental lack of knowledge as to what evolution is or claims.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
  7. Darrel

    prayer for tornado area..... Thank you god for destroying the town and everything we have worked so hard for, thank you for killing the kids, for killing the fathers, the mothers, the brothers and sisters. yes it is a miracle .... that you let anyone live. you are just to good to us !!!!!!!

    May 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • MormonChristian

      Why the anger, Darrell?

      We want God to let us live our lives and act freely. That means it rains on the just and the unjust. You wouldn't want it any other way.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
  8. Kafir

    Then you won't mind when people get incensed because the only thing some are willing to do for others in misery is pray for them. That's like saying "Sorry about your family getting wiped out, but here's a thumbs up."

    May 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
  9. dl

    My prayers require chickens, fire & virgins... I think those are WAY MORE effective than prayers to Jesus

    May 22, 2013 at 12:48 pm |
  10. Mark

    Wait a minute...
    All I ever hear is how much more "knowledgable" the athiests are about the Bible than most Christians. (they really like to drop that out there every chance they get). Then, Gervais really ought to know than he didn't invent the concept of "stop praying and do something". Not even close. As a matter of fact, it's right there in the Bible (but, I'm sure he already knew that, right?).

    James 2:14-18
    What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.

    Sorry Ricky, you're late by about 2,000 years.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:48 pm |
    • MormonChristian

      Exactly my way of thinking...

      "Pray like everything depends on God and act like everything depends on you". I'm flabbergasted by the angry atheists who
      think they are the only ones who think and act on this planet.

      Gervais is not a comic. He's a bully...

      May 22, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
    • Mark

      Mormons aren't Christians, so stop pretending.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • waterman

      What is someone has deeds, but no faith? What if someone helped many people, but never believed in Jesus, God, or any church? They still go to hell, right?

      May 22, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
    • MormonChristian

      You are the one who is not a Christian, Mark. I come here to agree and support you, and you throw this garbage in my face. Nice job, showing everyone what a "true Christian" is like.

      Christ condemned the hypocrites above all...if the shoe fits...

      May 22, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
    • MormonChristian

      Waterman- Christ said in Matthew 7:21-23 that actions speak louder than words or belief. So if a person helps others and lives a good life, God will not "trick" him and send him to Hell. I believe good people will be at home with God and He will warmly accept them, over many of us believers who say we believe but who mistreat or neglect our fellow human beings.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:09 pm |
    • .

      MormonChristian, you are a judgmental punk.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • YouMissedThePoint

      Did anyone else have an amazing LOL moment when the these 2 began arguing over who is the "true" christian...is it just me? how rediculous is that? but Mark that was absolutly hilarious the way you shut morman down for his beliefs or at least his screen name...keep the comedy coming all of you!

      May 22, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
    • cedar rapids

      'Then, Gervais really ought to know than he didn't invent the concept of "stop praying and do something"'

      He didnt claim he did invent the concept. That kind of makes your post a bit pointless.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
  11. ArchieDeBunker

    Add the IQ of a mosquito and that of Ricky Gervais together and you get about 60.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • AJR

      While that may be, it does nothing to defeat his position.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • Bob Lewis

      Factor in his income and it's about 250

      May 22, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
    • Pole dancing for Jesus

      Then add the IQ of ArchieDeBunker and you get a total of about 60.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
  12. SJ

    Thank you CNN for opening to eyes. I am now enlightened that crazy atheists want to sell every tragedy. Why dont you use your time effectively follow every monkey while it becomes a "human"? Gues who is stupid here: People who believe on historically factual & accurate stories that are 2000 years old & unchanging or people who believe speculations about millions of year old that change every 10 years because of "scientific" advancements!!!

    May 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • RichardSRussell

      "Why dont you use your time effectively?"

      The exact point we atheists are trying to make.

      Prayer is a complete, utter, and unmitigated WASTE of time.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • AJR

      It is very clear that the stories you believe in a certainly "changing." In fact, there are discrepancies between various translations of the stories. Not too mention the fact that the first stories were not even written until almost 40 years after the death of the main character. So, all this great stuff was happening but no one thought to write it down.....until many many years later? After memories had faded? And that's the basis for your belief? That's like believing a version of the fall of Saigon at the end of the Vietnam War written by a Cambodian goat herder who wasn't even there (the gospels were all authored by anonymous sources – well after the alleged events of Christ's life.)

      So that's the source upon which you base your certainty? Doesn't necessarily seem like the most solid of arguments.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Yes, we should only hold on to copies of translations of translations of copies of stories written decades or centuries after the events they claim to describe. We had better not adjust our views based on the best available evidence, gods forbid we actually get closer to the truth. The fact of the matter is that not only is your assertion that bible stories are unchanging patently false, but holding consistency up over accuracy and adapting to new information is wholly rediculous. You have the hubris to think you have the one and only Truth, scientists and historians have the humility to accept that they may be wrong and respond to real evidence by changing their views. This is why we need to teach people how to think, not what to think or else we risk holding on to falsehoods because they are comfortable, no matter how weak the evidence for them gets.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • sam

      It sounds like you didn't even read the article, just came in to have a freak out.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
    • cedar rapids

      'people who believe speculations about millions of year old that change every 10 years because of "scientific" advancements!!!'

      Except they dont change, certainly not in the manner you suggest. The ideas get refined, improved upon. You cannot show me one instance where the theory of evolution was rejected by mainstream science in favour of another idea.

      May 22, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
    • HA25

      Oh my God are you actually that ignorant? Michelangelo was a genuis and made fantastic art, but without continuous improvement – which Science and Literacy have brought us – we'd all still be using an outhouse like he did. Keeping to 2,000 year old stories does not make you wise.

      Let me guess – you also have 15 Kids. It makes me sad your offspring is more likely to populate the earth than mine. Does not bode well for our long-term survival...

      May 22, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
  13. MormonChristian

    So now believers only pray and don't act?? I was always taught to do BOTH.

    Kind of like the notion that you can't be a person of Faith and be a Scientist. Are Atheists really this naive??

    Almost sounds like a pretext for mass discrimination...

    May 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • Kafir

      Depends on the christian. Some theists think that prayer is all that is needed.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • MormonChristian

      Who? I don't know any believers that only wait for God. All of us are action-oriented. Do you really think atheists are the only ones that makes things happen?

      May 22, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
    • sam

      Apparently you're so bent out of shape about it, you need to make post after post crying about it.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
    • HA25

      No more than you think that Believers / Christians are the only ones with Empathy and Morals. Something Atheists have plenty of without needing religion.

      May 22, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
  14. brad

    I dont personally CARE what famous, rich people say.. Prayer is part of faith.. belief, in something not seen but believed in.. so if you believe in the power of prayer, pray, if you can pray & donate and/or help out, do it.. if you don't pray and donate do it.. but I will not listen to ANY rich/famous people EVER!! If you dont believe in SOMETHING you will FALL for anything.. (like a rich/famous persons diatribe)

    May 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • Kafir

      Some people believe in something... and fell for it.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
  15. Chris

    "Our country is GOD'S Country and you atheists that don't believe or get offended when we pray or when we speak of his name, go back to your own country or stay out of it. "

    Ok, as a Christian I have to say: YOU are the reason that atheism exists. And by the way, please DON'T ever call yourself a Christian – you don't have a clue what Christianity is about.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • dl

      WRONG. My prayers are Good. Yours are Bad

      May 22, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • sam

      She was just a real peach, wasn't she?

      May 22, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
  16. Bells B.

    Prayer isn't about results, Catholics teach that it's primarily about introspection and allowing us a calm mind to figure out what we should do. Many of you would be shocked to learn that many use prayer as a tool to build community (a oneness of thought) and not to "get something". Many do believe it allows us to hear our inner conscience which some view as innate to humanity (a gift from God).

    In fact, in Catholicism, belief alone gets you nowhere...acts of kindness are required.

    Many here have a skewed perception of prayer.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • brad

      Yes EXACTLY, WELL SAID.. many people no nothing of what they are talking about.. but the bitterness in their hearts, minds propels them to spew hate and ramble about something they know little about or haven't even tried.. or they hate things/beliefs, other peoples perception of God.. due to their upbringing.. not a decision made on their own.. sad really..

      May 22, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • Bells B.

      It is sad, so many intelligent people, but often the thinking is "Religion is old-fashioned and about money so I'm not even going to attempt to think about a relationship with God. I'll just wait and see if a scientist finds proof of God and go from there." Sounds so ridiculous, but that's it in a nutshell. Prayer inarguably works for people as a means towards happiness. Why would that not be supported in full? Possibly because it could conceivably suggest a personal responsibility and the need for introspection which may reveal....a higher purpose? Yikes. Scary stuff. Easier to mock it.

      Now, there are those that pervert prayer and those are the ones that make headlines (thanks to our media).

      May 22, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
    • sam

      Yeah....sorry, some people get stuff done without it being required.

      You guys keep on with your cute little smug, self-satisfied conversation, though. It's really inspiring.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:04 pm |
    • Bells B.

      Required for 'happiness'. Of course, you don't need religion to do good acts, but many find it helps to provide purpose and they believe in a higher purpose. There ya have it. Not self-satisfied at all...always need to improve. Glad I inspired you, now get out of mom's basement and make me proud.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • sam

      Yep, there you go – thanks for the judgmental 'mom's basement' remark, like a good passive aggressive christian.

      I'll leave you to your 'yikes'.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
  17. Dan Jones

    It never ceases to amaze me that liberals and atheist like to think of themselves as open minded and tolerant and then take every opportunity to prove that they are anything but that. Look at the comments on here. A continuous stream of hate and insults are being poured out on anything they don't agree with and on anyone who dares to think differently than them. These same people base all of their own personal beliefs on their own feelings and experiences and refuse to even do any research. Why not try being opened minded for a change? If you don't want to believe in God then don't. If you want to help those affected by this storm materially without prayer then do so, I am sure it will be appreciated. But if you belittle those who are praying you are only proving that you are an intolerant jerk.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • Kafir

      @Dan,

      It's ok to be open minded, as long as it's not so open that your brain spills onto the floor.

      Also, some people see prayer (or the suggestion to pray) as an empty gesture. Almost like a slap in the face to those who went through such tragedy.

      May 22, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
    • sam

      Gosh, Dan...you're so astute. I don't see a single post here from chrisitians using a continuous stream of hate and insults are being poured out on anything they don't agree with and on anyone who dares to think differently than them.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
    • iowajoe56

      Dan, tolerance and open mindedness is indeed a difficult state of mind to achieve as you have also demonstrated. Not all liberals are atheistic nor are they hateful. A problem we humanist have is when some of the religious insist on making a theocracy of the U.S.. That was not the intent of the founders of this nation. So we push back against the constant barrage of individuals and certain groups who constantly battle the separation of church and state claiming that they alone understand the will of God.

      May 22, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
  18. SDCinNS

    Personally.. I'd rather have people pray for me than give me money.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
  19. S. Jackson

    If I choose to believe in God, that is my choice. It amazes me how the people who choose not to want to police my mind. I certainly believe they have a right to their opinion. I have a household of 3 different religions, and one agnostic. We all respect each others views. Shame it is so hard for some people to agree to disagree.

    May 22, 2013 at 12:46 pm |
    • dl

      My God tells me to condemn those who believe in a different God... may my God dam n you

      May 22, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • cedar rapids

      'It amazes me how the people who choose not to want to police my mind'

      you are joking right? you have believers attempting to 'police the mind' on a constant basis, and you moan about non-believers?

      May 22, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
  20. rkulla

    It's funny that people consider just praying for people ok as long as they're far away. Even if they could donate money to provide real help. But I dare any of them to witness a car accident or something and instead of helping the person directly, just saying "I'm praying for you".

    May 22, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
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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 with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.