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Have you ever regreted leaving the ministry & the church ?

"No, I left because I had reached the conclusion that it was all untrue.

Now, over 30 years since leaving
& with much more life experience,
I am even more sure of that."

Could you see yourself remaining
in the church
under different circumstances ?

I sometimes think that if I'd not gone into the ministry,

I might have become so wrapped up in a career, family, church social life,
and church local lay leadership

- I was a Sunday School teacher & the youth treasurer & a lay preacher -

that I wouldn't have time to think
& a busy routine would have
taken over my life.

( I'm sure that is what has happened with many of those who provide lay leadership in their local church,

they leave the thinking to the minister / priest,

who in turn relies upon the teaching
of older church leaders.

That is how the direction of each denomination continues over generations.)

I read extensively as a teenager & young adult,
so something might have triggered more questioning
& led to me leaving anyway.

I hope so.

Why do you emphasise that clergy have special responsibility ?

"Devout people are trained to rely on their priest / minister.

They are seen to be in a special relationship with the Divine.

They are thought to be experts
in what they teach.

Any teacher of anything has an obligation to teach what is correct

& to be informed properly on the subject matter,

including facts that might cause thought & re-assessment."

“Where it is a duty to worship the sun,
it is pretty sure to be a crime
to examine the laws of heat.”

— John Morley 1838-1923,
UK statesman

“The personages of the Christian
heaven & their conversations
are no more a matter of fact
than the personages
of the Greek Olympus

- Matthew Arnold 1822 - 1888
in preface to "God and Bible" 1875

"The difficulty lies not so much in developing new ideas
as in escaping from old ones."

- J M Keynes

Giordano Bruno ( 1546 - 1600 )
Burned at the stake by the church :

"The foolish renounce this world and pursue an imaginary world to come."

Michel de Montaigne (1533 - 1592):

"How many things that were
articles of faith yesterday

are fables today."

"You are an intelligent human being.

Your life is valuable for its own sake.

You are not second-class in the universe, deriving meaning and purpose from some other mind.

You are not inherently evil
- you are inherently human,

possessing the positive rational potential to help make this a world of morality, peace and joy.

Trust yourself."

[ Dan Barker,
Former minister - now with
Freedom From Religion Foundation
in "Losing Faith in Faith" ]

New reformation Leaving

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The green sidebar on
has some Bible verses that came as a shock
when I really thought about them,
yet I'd read the Bible from childhood,
& as a theological student & as a minister
and had NOT really realised the implications.

In another context J K Galbraith wrote :

'Faced with the choice between changing ones' mind
and "proving" there is no need to do so,
TOO MANY get busy on "the proof".'

( italics are my wording)

I was very fortunate to have no doubts
that I was doing the right thing in leaving it all completely.

Have a happy, fit and healthy life...

Peter Dashevici, Brisbane, Australia

this page, and my updates and interesting snippets on Twitter.

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