I have resigned to the fact that many people believe in religion.

Who am I? Why am I? Questions that are either inane or beyond our comprehension, often simultaneously. The inane part: A 37y-old man living in Uppsala, Sweden. Short, nearsighted and without a ball-sense. Social awkward. Brilliant in most school-subjects. 
When the recruiting drive to get the 14-year-olds to read and take the first communion, my answer was a flat No. No time to consider needed. Remorse afterwards; Non-existent.
My sister where in her open-mindset at the time (ie her time four years earlier) and did all the reading and "teaching" and then blankly refused to take the communion, and during a two hour phone call with the priest where she could unleash all her pent-up logic left her even more convinced and one confused priest who apparently found her compsure somtimes later.

I make a break here, I cannot retell the story of the death of my parents right now,
 I need to think it properly through first

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Anders, it sounds similar to my story. I have forever been a "nonbeliever" even though I was raised in the Southern Baptist tradition. In the Baptist church baptism it is considered to be a free choice. At the age of six I was visited by our pastor who wanted to know why the hell I hadn't made that "free will" choice. I told him I really enjoyed all the stories in the bible but didn't find any of them any more credible than the comic books I read at the time. As hard as he tried (and he was very persistent) he never got me to ask for baptism. Unlike your sister, my sister succumbed, willingly, and to this day is a very religious person.

At 60, I am somewhat older than you but have lost both my parents too. Each of us handles that particular loss in our own way. I am hopeful that you have learned to cope with the loss.

I have also resigned myself to a life surrounded by religious people but finally moved to a part of the USA where there are more people like me. I find my new life here extremely invigorating!

Welcome to Atheist Nexus.
Welcome Anders!
Welcome to AN, Anders!
Continuing my own presentation thread (looks like I started it at 02.30 in the morning)

Not doing the confirmation and communion wasn't a big deal, my parents were not church-goers but apparently believed in god in their own (dysfunctional) way. It was never a big deal. Stats for the Swedish church (Lutheran) says 75% of the population are members but only some 5% attend services regularly.

What really pushed me over the edge about organized religion is funerals. By coincidence I've been too a slew of funerals, six in four years (pat. grandmothers sister (old), friend of family (everything), friend of families husband (diabetes t2), my father (three packs of cigarettes a day), mat. grandmother (90 y.o.) and my mother (three packs of cigarettes a day).

Each of these funerals were held in church, presided over by a priest who had never met the person who had passed away, but nevertheless went on and on about god this and god that. The two funerals I had my hand in planning were really unsettling. Here's where the communion thing comes back again.

For my dads' funeral we meet with this priest, the same one my sister defeated with logic. My Mom is crying her heart out flanked by two staunch atheists and yet the person goes on about god and heaven for a MAN SHE HAS NEVER MET IN HER LIFE.

When Mom died seven months later we held the funeral in church due to her wishes, same priest (bad luck in the draw) but this time we held her on a shorter leash. I remember scouring the hymnbook for the least offensive hymns ("rules" said you have to have two or three) and I think we nailed the music pretty neatly.

When I die there's no way they'll get me near a church, my sister knows this (and her husband has it specified that Monty Pythons' "Always look on the bright side of life" shall be played at his funeral).

EDIT: Btw Bear with me, English isn't my first language. And why can't English have two words for grandmother, paternal grandmother is just cumbersome.




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