Stories from Community Members
Reflections on finding the Central Florida Freethought Community. These stories and comments are provided by community members. Most are anonymous for sake of the internet and families.
“I left religion after watching the Netflix movie "Religulous" where I found out that the same story line of a savior being sacrificed for our sins and resurrected on the 3rd day and having 12 disciples, etc. isn't original to Christianity...many other gods before the god of the christian bible have almost identical story lines.
If I couldn't believe the bible to be true, than I also couldn't believe the god in it to be real either.After doing much more research on the origins of religion and evolution I now consider myself an atheist...I felt really lost after leaving my church as I was really involved, and all of my friends attended. I'm so grateful to have found CFFC and for the secular woman's group!♥️.” - Anonymous
“As I embraced critical thinking in other areas of my life, I found this island of irrationality left within me that I needed to confront. That island was religion. At 2am in the morning and staring at the ceiling above my bed, I could not help but confront that remaining island of pure irrationally. It was one of the most difficult things I have ever done as it meant walking away from my parent’s teachings, acceptance within societal norms and realizing I would not see loved ones in an afterlife.
I was on my own. However, I was not really on my own. I found the CFFC and like minded individuals who embraced science and reason in place of delusion and a placebo. With the CFFC, I was able to realize that a much more rewarding and productive life can be found by thinking for myself, rather than relying on myths as a crutch.” - Anonymous
“As a child my mother took me to a Catholic Church, had me baptized, much to the dismay of my southern Baptist father. This was a serious issue in my home, growing up and watching my parents argue about faith.
As my teen years went by I tried several different churches but I was always concerned with the hypocrisy I heard; the threats hurled my way, love God or else. I decided I had enough and left all together.
Fast forward two decades, I am a single mom, exiting from a mental and emotionally abusive relationship; and caring for a mother dying of cancer. I was beaten, tired and I needed some support, so I decided to take my children to a Unitarian church. We attended every Sunday for about a year. I actually liked the open, tolerant, questioning approach they took to faith, and entire the world around us. The pastor was a practicing Buddhist and I thought I had found a home. Then one day, after the service, I approached the pastor and asked her if she would come to my mother’s home and pray with her. My mom was fading and it would mean a lot to her. The pastor turned to me and said – “I am sorry but my board will not allow me to do that, you haven’t made large monetary donations to the church”.
I felt like I was punched in the gut, and I left in tears. The experiment in my mind was a failure.”- Anonymous
'“When I was in my 20’s I started questioning the bible. It wasn’t until I had children that I really decided I was not religious. I didn’t want to give my children false ideas about the world. It is important to give them a base in reality. The CFFC has been terrific for connecting me to other families and providing events for us to get together with like minded people.” - Anonymous
"I'm not able to attend most CFFC events, but I certainly give my time and effort when I can because I think having an organization that provides a community and voice to nonbelievers is important. Knowing I'm not alone gives me valuable peace of mind. And CFFC's activities let the general public and local politicians know we're here and we matter." Brandon Haught
“Since the age of six, I questioned what my mother said about what is stated in the Bible.
Nonetheless, I was raised in the Seventh-Day Adventist and Baptist churches. As an adult I was an African Methodist Episcopalian simply because my wife was. I was baptized and all the rest. I had stopped questioning.
Then I discovered “New Thought” churches, much more liberal in the practice of Christianity: I became a lay minister, chaplain, president of the board, Sunday school teacher, choir member co-founded Religious Science churches in Indianapolis and Pittsburgh. I became a Licensed Unity Teacher and spoke at a dozen cities in five states as guest speaker. I was all in.
And then September 11, 2001, occurred and I thought “religious belief leads devotees to do this!”
At that point the veil of “Don’t question, just do as you are told and just believe; have faith.” slipped from my consciousness.
That mind-set of the wondering, questioning innocent but now senior citizen took over and my intellect pushed forth...once again. I had read the history of several religions and the history of the Bible and how it came to be. I knew the atrocities perpetrated in the name of religion...religions of all kinds, including the popular Christianity. I pondered why so many failed to realize their savior was a Jew. I questioned how Jesus is depicted often as blond with blue eyes and only had a three year ministry...as a Jew. I wondered how the Christians revered Mary who had a one night stand with god, got knocked up and her husband did not object and she gave birth to what we call today, a bastard. I looked a billions of humans and decide god has more than one son...and more daughters than sons.
Of course, I questioned the Noah’s Arc, story, the creation story and just about everything ignorant, uneducated, illiterate people wrote decades after the occurrence. I questioned and I questioned and I questioned; I was a skeptic.
Fearful of what others might think, I stayed in the closet for years not wanting their scorn.
Now, I am out! Thanks to the Central Florida Free Thought Community which became known to me because it was pushing government to abide by the separation of the government and religion.
It is comforting to be around like-minded persons who rely on fact not fiction, science not myth, thinking not ignorance.
I am, positively,”
“The Central-Florida area is our home. We work diligently together (both here and everywhere) to build bridges, foster healthy dialogues, promote the principles that everyone is equal, fight for our planet and environment, and secure that no entity may use government/laws to gain power, influence, or assert dogmatic authority.
We are people fighting, loving, working, living, and learning together. We unite not in spite of but due to our shared desire to live free from religious-backed oppression, usurping, and warmongering – both socially and politically. We are a community of people from varying walks of life, cultures, faith journeys, and opinions whom have liberated ourselves from the confines of religion, dogma, and/or supernatural ideology by asking questions and thinking freely.
We adhere to mutual respect, freedom of thought, and the incumbent responsibilities to stay aware and active when any persons or rights are under siege, and when any entity or group seeks to encroach ideological dominion upon society and government (nationally and locally).” - Anonymous