Hey, everyone, my name is Forrest.
I'm a second-generation atheist; both my parents having been raised Christian and rejected it. My Dad in particular was really burned by his religious upbringing, and had some real anger issues about that.
While religion is just one dimension of how I chose my life partner, it was an important element. I would certainly never get involved with a Christian, but I was equally dubious about getting involved with a bitter ex-Christian. In the end, I travelled halfway around the world and married someone who had barely been affected by Christianity at all; a beautiful, intelligent Chinese woman. (I also wanted to expand my horizons beyond being too white, too American, and too only-English-speaking.)
She came back to the US with me and then, some time later, her retired parents moved in with us. (Immigration services wouldn't issue them a visitors' visa on the grounds that they would surely stay, but when we then tried to get an immigration visa for them .... no problem. Go figure.) I love my parents-in-law and it's wonderful to have their help raising our two boys -- but some time after their arrival, they decided to convert to Christianity and go to a Chinese church. A lot of it is because they can speak their own language, but they take it quite seriously, getting baptized and all.
This is an interesting situation, and I could go on ... but I'm running out of time now. Maybe I'll say more later, if there's interest.
Hi Forrest -- sure there in interest in what you have to say.
Welcome to the site -- I hope you like it.
Greetings Forrest. Nice escape attempt. Foiled again. :)
Atheist outreach. What a fantastic idea...it would balance the scales at least and give students choices and opportunities for socializing with 'like-minded' people. Thanks for your reply. The more 'normal' and mainstream atheism becomes, the less we'll be viewed as outcasts and 'un-American'.
( PS: I liked your in-laws' simple, clear-cut distinction between Protestants and Catholics...that was funny....pope worship or no pope worship....I was reading about the Puritans who came across to colonize Massachusetts and how they described the pope in their special Protestant way as 'the antichrist' and 'the beast at the bottomless pit'...NOT a very charitable description..ha...it is sometimes easy to forget the real animosity felt between those 2 branches of Christianity throughout world history and US history.)