San Francisco Atheists October Meeting
Saturday October 27
Schroeder's restaurant, rear dining room
240 Front St., San Francisco
Near the Embarcadero MUNI/BART station
This month we are pleased to present Rebecca Hensler, the founder of secular grief support network Grief
Beyond Belief. Following the death of her infant son, Rebecca recognized a need for grief support services free of references to Heaven, God, angels, spirits, and signs that dominate mainstream grief support. When she did not find the kind of community she needed among the myriad grief support sites on the internet, Rebecca created Grief Beyond Belief, a Facebook page where grieving nonbelievers gather to share their memories, experiences,
and emotions, including their anger and frustration with religious and spiritual "comfort." Though currently only a Facebook page, the project continues to grow as Rebecca plans for its expansion both online and off.
Rebecca will speak on
-- the need for faith-free grief support and how it differs from faith-based comfort
-- the difference between replicating religious institutions and creating secular community
-- the benefits and limitations of an online grief network and the future of Grief Beyond Belief
-- how secular grief support fits into the growing secular support movement
Following her talk, Rebecca welcomes questions about surviving and healing from grief as an atheist as well as about Grief Beyond Belief. She has a BA in Political Activism and an MS in Counseling, and works as a middle school counselor
in the San Francisco Unified School District.