Sunday Assembly Portland is part of the Sunday Assembly global movement of planting local godless congregations in communities that would like to have one. What do we do at Sunday Assembly? A good way to imagine what we do is to think of a church service, but erase anything having to do with God or the supernatural. This means we primarily focus on two things in our main meetings: sing-along to some great popular songs, and listening to an inspirational lecture. But we also don't denigrate religious beliefs, so some religious people may also enjoy our group.
We are also into building a community of like-minded folks. The motto for Sunday assembly is to “celebrate life” and to help each other “live better, help often, and wonder more.” Living this "one life that we know that we have" in the best possible way is very important to us.
People in Portland are talking. What are they saying? Here are some of the interesting comments from people who have joined our meetup group:
“I have really good, intellectual reasons for going to Sunday Assembly. I do. But if I'm being honest, I'll admit they aren't my main reason for going. The main reason I want to attend Sunday Assembly is because I want to feel comfortable talking about what I believe in a room full of total strangers. I want to know I'm not being judged negatively for leaving fairy tales in books. I want to stand shoulder to shoulder with good people who agree with me. For once. My mother talks about her favorite parts of church being the sense of community and the shared ideals. I want that, too, and I don't want to have to leave science at home to get it. I want to feel the love of a congregation without suffering the ignorance of the mob. I want church without religion. “
“Looking forward to helping create a community that celebrates the joys and wonders of life, as well as sharing the sorrows and struggles, without invoking the supernatural.”
“I have been an Atheist since I was 14. I have always said that churches are just Country Clubs that bond over a belief in God. I am a social person and want that aspect of community. I moved to Portland a couple of years ago. I left a lot of great friends behind in Arizona and have not really found a place to meet people and make new friends in the community. This sounds like a great place to meet people that are like minded and social like myself.”
“I long to be a part of a smart and caring community - but without the dogma. I've always felt that every positive aspect of religion could be done just as well out of compassion and humanity, and we could set aside all the repression, denial, and frequent homicidal rampages in the name of the ‘one true faith.’“
“I'm a nurse practitioner in Salem, looking for a group of like-minded individuals. The description of a church without the god-bits is just what I've always been looking for.”
“Spiritual but not religious soul seeking like-minded people.”
“East Coast boomer who's been in PDX long enough to raise two kids here. Always envied others the social aspect of religion, but never comfortable with the religious part, so this sounds perfect.”
“I grew up Christian, went through my bitter atheist phase, and now here I am. I just want to be a part of a strong and healthy community without any of the mysticism and magical thinking of the typical church experience.”
“I had wanted to go make my living as a Pastor, but my de-conversion became a slight barrier... Since then, I have been envisioning a Humanist Church. A consistent place a community of like-minded folks can learn, grow, give, and receive together.”
“Looking for community of non-religious, but spiritual and loving people.”
“I like the whole idea of a godless church. I always liked the community feel of a church but could not believe the god part.”
“I have been looking for a community of like-minded folks. I love the idea of a Sunday gathering - all the fellowship, none of the fantasy play!”
“Being a non-religious person I have been actively searching and struggling to find a community where I feel welcome. I would love be surrounded by good people who just want to practice their own beliefs in a non-judgmental environment, celebrating life and helping others.”
“We believe that morality and religion are neither mutually inclusive or exclusive and individuals should be judged as such. We do what we believe is right. My family is not religious but I remember enjoying church as a child. I want my children to have the experience of gathering without imposing religious beliefs I no longer agree with. When I saw this group, I thought it could be just what I've been searching for.”
“I am a lapsed catholic with little to no positive memories of that upbringing but am curious about this community.”
Our next event is scheduled for Sun. March 9th at 6 pm. Details can be found here: http://www.meetup.com/Portland-Sunday-Assembly/events/165693792 .
Sunday Assembly was started by two comedians in the U.K.: Sanderson Jones and Pippa Evans. Click here to read the Charter for the Sunday Assembly; which spells out our mission, objectives, and operating policies: http://tinyurl.com/nyumysf .
You can find us one Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/SundayAssemblyPDX . Consider this as your personal invitation to come join us!