Wow! So many stories out there.
One of my best friends from college was married to a pastor and is now divorced. She told me he left Jesus before he left her.
My ex husband is gay. Clergy was a second career for him and I left work on a Ph.D. to put him through it. A year into his first pastorate he came out to me. I divorced him five years later. His state authority found out about the divorce only after it was finalized. They asked him if I had lost my faith because they had been seeing a lot of divorces due to that. At that point I hadn't. I visited a lot of churches after the divorcce and the truth became clearer and clearer. It seemed to me that if this god thing were real that sunday morning wouldn't be the biggest part of it all. I was part if a quaker group for awhile but eventually let go of that as well. I looked into Buddhism but listened to what was basically a Buddhist sermon online and just ugh! Why a sermon? I also went to a unitarian church for a few weeks and I think that was the most messed up of all. When I was invited to a ladies retreat w promises of tarot readings . . . Well that was enough.
Hi Joseph P, I hope you are well :) Well, the situation in South Africa is pretty much the same as everywhere else I reckon. The religion I am most surrounded by is Christianity due to the area I am from (Cape Town). If I were in the Durban area I'd by surrounded by more people of the Muslim faith. Honestly, I don't know a lot of Atheists or Agnostics myself (only about 5). I am not aware of any movement in the country, however I wish there would be one as Atheists aren't received very well. My (Atheist) boyfriend's (Christian) father is constantly trying to convert me, and is ashamed of the fact that his son has an Atheist girlfriend. My boyfriend is afraid to admit that he is an Atheist so his parents only know that I am one. He mostly won't admit it due the amount of admin it would come with and he fears his father's health will (literally) decline finding out his only son is an atheist. He is very religious and mostly the only reason he ever leaves the house is to go to church. We are quite oppressed and judged here, I am lucky to have open minded parents who do not judge me for my decision at all and actually encourage me to question everything.
I am not very open about my lack of religion, as I would be ill received and I also don’t want to have to deal with the admin of it all, and I avoid discussions of religion at all costs. However, I do dream of being able to express my opinions freely, but I do not like to offend people (as you probably know, people of faith can be easily offended upon finding out that one does not believe in a higher power) or cause any uncomfortable situations. I guess in this regard I am a bit of a coward, but I am a very reserved person and prefer avoiding any conflict as I am very respectful of other people’s choice to be religious.