Friday, August 6, 2010

Keeping faith while losing religion For some Christians it's a matter of separating politics from core beliefs

From Leonard Pitts-

Today, I quit being a Christian."

With those words last week on Facebook, Anne Rice delivered a wake-up call for organized religion. The question is whether it will be recognized as such.

"I remain committed to Christ as always," she wrote, "but not to being 'Christian' or to being part of Christianity. It's simply impossible for me to 'belong' to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious and deservedly infamous group. For 10 years, I've tried. I've failed. I'm an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else."

You will recall that the author, famed for her vampire novels, made a much-publicized return to the Catholicism of her youth after years of calling herself an atheist. Now, years later, she says she hasn't lost her faith, but she's had it up to here with organized religion.

"In the name of Christ," she wrote, "I refuse to be anti-gay. I refuse to be anti-feminist. I refuse to be anti-artificial birth control. I refuse to be anti-Democrat. I refuse to be anti-secular humanism. I refuse to be anti-science. I refuse to be anti-life."

If that was not nearly enough for atheist observers, one of whom berated her online for refusing to completely give up her "superstitious delusions," it was surely plenty for people of faith. But Ms. Rice is hardly the only one who feels as she does.

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