I’ll put it out there now lest I confuse you all, I am a Christian. The type of Christian that believes that God is love and that Jesus wanted us to live better, help often and wonder more…
My life has taken some small, non dramatic twists and turns, a little bit like rolling over in bed, it’s been gentle but my position has changed. Brought up in a household with a Christian mother and agnostic/atheist father I suppose it was destined to. A church goer up until 16 years of age, adolescence got in the way. Absent from any form of organised religion through university, experimenting with all sorts of ways of living, moving to London and feeling the need to ground myself I met some Christian friends. The friends were amazing (and still are) but the type of church we attended together was about conforming and subscribing, and certainty – good for anxiety, bad for doubt.
Cut forward two years and having experienced the death of my father, I found it hard to believe that his probable conversion on his death bed (as presented to me by my church) meant he was in heaven. Surely the way he conducted himself in life meant more than last words or thoughts. And what is heaven anyway, isn’t it an amazing meal and conversation with friends, seeing the sun burst through the clouds over a deserted beach?
Then I found a home, in St Luke’s, West Holloway, with Dave Tomlinson, who helped me rediscover and get to know my father all over again by recalling all his incredible qualities; patience, humility, gentleness, and an unrelenting ability to not judge, as we all do and welcome anyone and everyone into his quiet life. This was a type of religion I could believe, one where doubt is celebrated and certainty is viewed with extreme concern, and all are genuinely welcomed.
And now, I am married to an atheist, a patient, humble, gentle (and excited about life) atheist and together we have discovered the Sunday Assembly, another place where all are welcomed, no one is turned away, and you get to listen and learn, sing and generally feel amazing about life. So, I am excited for the opportunity to create a community that can welcome people and support everyone to realise their amazingness. An opportunity to create a space for all people, without it being conditional on conforming, a space to develop so our lives became fuller and more rewarding, that constitutes my faith and motivation for Sunday Aseembly Everywhere.
So, put quite simply I want to share the love in Brighton, a little bit more locally to me, and be a part of supporting others to live better, help often and wonder more….
This is part of a series of blog posts by folk starting Sunday Assemblies. We’d now like to throw it open to the whole Sunday Assembly community. Please drop us a line if you’d like to say why you like the idea of a godless gathering.