I wanted to take an informal poll. My question is the result of a discussion I had with a high octane Christian friend of mine. In a rare occurrence we broached the topic of religion. At one point he said, well, you're an Atheist because you were raised Catholic. Most Atheists are former Catholics. He went on to explain that since the Catholic church is soooo far removed from the true gospels that blah, blah,blah. And that's why I'm an Atheist and priests like to fondle little boys. I know there are a bunch of Catholics out here so his comment could just be a statistical observation or he might just flat out hate Catholics almost as much as he hate Athists. He does not hate be because, lets face it who could.
Anyway, I was just wondering how many former Jews, Muslims, Hindu's, etc were on our site.
I was protestant congregationalist ... probably the mildest form of christianity around, or at least that I'm aware of. The church where I spent the majority of my time was a friendly, welcoming place with a lot of good people, particularly the adults. Still, as I've said many times, it was all lecture and no lab, no experience to back up all the preaching. It was weak tea, and I dropped it as much for that as for the lack of credibility of what they taught.
I was a Methodist for about 8 years and 4 years after that I went because I thought it was expected. I never experienced any fire and brimstone lectures at the small church, but logic won out in the end for me.
Sorry, like you I am just a wayward former Catholic (your friend may have a point...) Seriously, it is somewhat true that Catholics, even the clergy, do not take the Old Testament all that seriously, while still somehow embracing the New Testament (I don't ever recall any sermon based on the former). i suppose that gives Catholics a "leg up" on the road to reality, in that many of us (most?) already found those early stories as: A.- preposterous (see story about"walls of Jericho" or "Jonah and the whale") or B. Flatly untrue (see story about "Adam and Eve" and "Noah's Ark"). You hear the book described as "allegorical" among many Catholics. So thank the stars for my Catholic upbringing, and I greatly admire those former fundamentalist Christians, like Dan Barker, who,while immersed in a sea of dogmatic indoctrination, were able to finally see the truth and reality around them. Good topic!
Brainwashed into the cult of Mormonism as an infant. Took a long time to break-out.
Raised in no religion, very open-minded Atheist Mom, didn't tell us what to believe or not. Tried Catholicism for my husband. When my then 7-year old daughter went to her first class and came out and said "That jesus-thing sounds like a myth to me", lol, well that was the end of that. Now my husband is an Atheist too. :) I must've had a brain-blurp when I tried that. Oh well.
I identified as a Methodist until roughly 17 years of age. After that I slowly slipped into Agnosticism and eventually became an Atheist.
Started out Lutheran. Then some Baptist. Never really believed it much from the get go. Found it all very weird even at 6 or 7 years old.
My parents were pretty shitty examples of the 1950's Christian family . My father was an Atheist, although he never openly proclaimed it until the last few years of his life. My mother looked at church as a social event and didn't really care about the whole god bit – her closest friend was the daughter of a No. Carolina Baptist minister and she was an outspoken, unapologetic Atheist.
When I figured out that Santa was just a story like Donald Duck or Mickey Mouse I reasoned that god and Jesus were also just stories – nothing has ever convinced me otherwise.
My parents were not normal churchgoers though they both are professing Christians, but when I went to church I went to a nondenominational Protestant church. I guess it would have been similar to Southern Baptist, but they just didn't have many rules about drinking, dancing, etc. My husband's family was Episcopalian and he is an atheist now. There aren't really that many Catholics that I know of from Oklahoma, so most atheists there would have been brought up Protestant.
I was really not practicing any religion after reaching adulthood although I was born into a Hindu family. I am curious about the result this poll will reveal and so I will keep a watch on this.