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My last Resurrection Sunday!

The clock just chimed and my last "Resurrection Sunday" behind the pulpit is behind me. This has been a long time coming. When I first joined the site two years ago, I couldn't see a way out. My role as a pastor was the core of my identity and my living.

I've spent the last two years fortifying my finances and preparing for an exit. If all goes as planned, I'll be free of this profession, my shit storm of a marriage, and a life lived that's a lie by July. I cannot express how hard I've worked for this day. I no longer am solely dependent on my church income, I'm nearly debt free, and have set all the pieces in order to get the hell out of here.

I have no illusions there are no obstacles in my future, but I can finally see the light. July can't get here fast enough.

I enjoy the site. Anyone ever looking for a late night chat, hit me up. I'm a night owl and rarely sleep much.

One last thing,

The relief when I bowed my head this morning and said amen was palpable. It's not my last sermon, but it's my last big one. And I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel! Reverend John Doe is almost behind me. I can't wait! πŸ™‚

ReverendJohnDoe 5 Apr 13
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30 comments

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7

It sounds like you are due for some big shifts in your life. I'm sure you'll rest easier when you are living a life of personal integrity. May all go well for you. πŸ™‚

6

Congratulations πŸŽ‰ and welcome to the world of reality. 😁

5

It's never too late to start all over again. The transition can be a little rocky but it is better to go through the fire and come out the other side a better person than to stay stagnant in a life without meaning or love.

@Novelty I like the imagery, the best scene in an old, cult classic.

@Novelty It's at the very end of the clip but as in the pics, the fire does not consume her but destroys a threat to human kind. Interesting that it is usually a women that saves human kind from itself, men seem to be better at causing destruction, not preventing it.

@Novelty Sadly, Americans just haven't matured to the point as a culture where they can see the obvious benefits of a female leader like Elizabeth Warren. I'm a Canadian so I like Bernie as well, a bit right of center from a Canadian standpoint but anything is better than the current choice between a dottering old fool and a narcissistic psychopath.

5

Congratulations for finding your way from the dark side. Hopefully sleep will come easier once released from your shackles.

5

Hallelujah and Ra'men! Stay strong 😊

5

I hope you are aware of the clergy project. If not check it out. It is a very closed group that helps pastors escape the church.

5

Congratulations I hope the rest of your escape goes well for you. As a former JW ans at one time an elder i have an idea of how you feel I stood on the pkatform with my mouth quoting the bible and saying how wonderful jehovah is etc etc my head was saying what a load of crap.

5

That must be a incredible relief, being able to break two very corrupt relationships, to climb out of the rut and head for the high ground. It doesn't necessarily mean you'll be happier but at least you will again have the potential to be happy. Good luck mate.

4

Did it ever occur to you to be an outed Christian-atheist?

I'm asking because it's a space many former theist clergy chose to occupy.

Outed Christian atheist? I think he'd have to study for that if it means what I think it means...

@Cutiebeauty It means he remains openly Christian but does not believe in God of the Bible or any other god/gods.

Christian atheists believe in the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, sans the more fantastical God angles.

@SeaGreenEyez ah. I see.. Thanks for the explanation 😊

@SeaGreenEyez That seems like simply the only reasonable ideas about Jesus that anyone could accept.

I mean, it seems so clear to me:

  1. There is no god.
  2. Jesus had a lot of useful ideas. He was not perfect, he was not god, he did no miracles, just useful ideas.

I truly find it amazing that so many folks embrace one of the following beliefs:

  1. Jesus is god and perfect and he came back alive, etc.
  2. Jesus is a fictional fairy tale character, and, therefore, none of his ideas should be considered at all.

I just shake my head, truly amazed, that so many folks have such beliefs.

4

I'm happy for your upcoming freedom. Enlightenment is better late than never ! Good luck !

4

Good luck with your life in July. You should check out "The Clergy Project", they help people like you with support.

4

Wow! You're an atheist clergyman? You pulled that off? You should sell used cars. Maybe you can get a job with Goldman Sachs selling worthless bonds to your customers as AA rated.

4

If your looking for insight from someone who's already walked your path, Dan Barker is an atheist and former Evangelical preacher. He's also an excellent author.

JimG Level 8 Apr 13, 2020
4

What determination you have shown. Good luck to you through to July and beyond. πŸ™‚

4

Congratulations for crossing from the dimness and shadows of religion into the light and brilliance that is Reality.

4

Congratulations and good luck.

4

Very awesome. I admire your efforts. As pretty much a lifelong non believer in a non religious family I can only imagine what your life might be like. I hope utter success in your efforts to live the life you want.

4

Congratulations & good luck! Keep your preacher's license - you can pick up a few $$ from a fill-in gig now & then.

4

I can’t imagine how you have managed to hold it all together all this time. I have heard one or two clergymen on TV (from the Anglican C of E) admit that they have lost their faith in god, I thought it was curious that they were still holding down jobs as vicars and hadn’t resigned. I suppose there are monetary factors involved, I can understand that, but that you managed to maintain that level of subterfuge and pretence must have taken a big toll on your mental health. I wish you well for the future.

One ex church leader I can listen to is Richard Holloway who was bishop of Edinburgh and primus of the Episcopal church ( that term always amuses me as I was brought up using primus stoves for picnicking)
I don't know if he totally given up his religious beliefs but he is called an apostate in some quarters

4

I am relieved and happy for you. Keep us posted.

3

Good for you! My own departure from christianity to atheism was devastating. I was studying for a Bachelor in Theology only to discover that it was all based on myth at best or outright lies at worst. I discovered that most of my professors were hanging in by their fingernails, and then one of the said to me β€˜You are god’. Applying reason to that statement resulted in the knowledge that I have everything I need to live in this world is within me, and that god is in fact a figment of human imagination. I was in a deep abyss for about two years, came out the others side a strong capable woman. It has been over 20 years now and I am freer now than I ever was for the first 40yrs of my life.
Hope you continue to go from strength to strength in your new found freedom.😊

3

I applaud you in your endeavor to finally free yourself from the gilded cage of faith. I never really participated extensively in church. I was baptized as a boy of six and just believed because my family did, so when my time came I was twelve and simply told my mom I didn’t want to go to church anymore and she was great about it despite being a believer to this day. My faith wavered for years until I just let it go around 18. I can’t imagine how difficult your predicament is/was but now you can return to who you were when you were born into the world, innocent but this time you are free to make your own way. Congratulations.

3

This is not uncommon nowadays. Ordained minister Dan Barker of Freedom From Religion Foundation is the first one I think of. Also John Shuck declared his atheism and continued to pastor a Presbyterian (USA) church.

3

Wow, congratulations on getting through your last major church service. Was it televised from your home? I'm wondering what your plans are for exiting stage left. Will you come clean with your congregation? They might feel disappointment, maybe anger that they've been lied to, manipulated, duped. Do you think you will remain in contact with some of the people you got close to? It sounds like you are on the verge of an incredibly empowering experience, one that will allow you to get real with yourself about who you are and what you believe.

2

Good luck to you.

It isn't even rational to believe that a crucified man would be given a tomb, and especially when contemporary history of the time says nothing about him. That's right. No mention of poor Jesus from Romans or his own people. No mention of his name by anyone who lived in his timeline. No mention of anyone outside of the bible reference who was tried and crucified in this manner and the bible is not history. If a man was important enough to have an audience with Pilate, history on both sides should have said something. The reality is that Pilate most likely would not have cared and chances are he and Jesus could not speak the same language. Those that want you to believe in Jesus had to fabricate a story about why he died.

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