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EXTERNAL EVENT - ACTIVISM (series, Every Sunday evening) "God on Trial"

UPDATE: 21/2. The Christian group are happy to have us along, but want to emphasise that the format is a speech, followed by discussion within smaller groups of 4 to 6. They do not want the speech (20 mins or so) interrupted by questions and I think since it is their event it is only right that we should respect their format. The feedback from atheists who went  is that the speech is pretty long, and since the hosts do not want it interrupted, you might want to take notes during it so you can refer to what was said later in the small group discussions. Needless to say, we should keep this polite and not make it personal. Not to say you can't be forthright afterwards during the discussions of course, but please let's keep it civil, thank you :-)   please note:18:00 table tennis/social. Discussion starts 18:30

Here's the original invite:

Hi there, I'm Jeremy and I'm involved in a meetup group called Connected. It's run by Christians and we want to encourage intelligent discussion and debate among people of various beliefs. We're about to start a new series called "God on Trial" and are hoping for quite a few people of different viewpoints to come and join the discussion. It would be great if some of you would like to come along. Feel free to advertise it to your members if you think that would be appropriate.

Each week we are discussing a different topic:
Feb 17th: "No evidence. Dear God - mind speaking up?"
Feb 24th: "It's the C21st. Dear God - are you relevant any more?"
March 3rd: "Life hurts. Dear God - do you care?"
March 10th: "Rules, rules, rules. Dear God - are you a killjoy?"
March 17th: "Hell, fire and brimstone. Dear God - are you a sadist?"
March 24th: "We're all trying our best. Dear God - why so exclusive?"

More info can be found on our meetup page. Please RSVP here if you'd like to come along and we'll let the Connected group know.

PRICE: Free ( Let's hope they don't want our souls ;-)) Just kidding, it's actually REALLY refreshing isn't it, that religious people want to hear other opinions and maybe even the 'E' word? ...E..Ev..evidence?? Seriously though, I must say I'm impressed by this group for at least trying ...and it'll be an interesting experience, no doubt!


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  • David S

    Hi all.
    Just back from the latest "God on Trial" session with a different format than expected. There were 4 prescripted topics for discussion and after a brief introduction each time, small groups 4/5 explored the issues. It worked well, I thought - no sermonizing.

    The topic was Hell (literally!) and the four areas to explore are reproduced below for anyone who's interested.

    1. "I would define 'justice' as _______"
    2. "I believe the biblical idea of Hell is just/unjust because _____"
    3. "The biblical idea of Hell is likely to produce a more ______ society"
    4."For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16. What do you make of this verse?

    1 · March 17, 2013

    • Georgi L.

      Er Er Er ...perish = died. No debate. But then, you can't reason with unreasonable people.

      March 18, 2013

    • Alex D

      2. Logic + understanding the concept of infinity + a small amount of thought => hell is infinite punishment for finite sin, therefore infinitely unjust regardless of the gravity of the sins being punished, therefore god is unjust... and evil. Or doesn't exist; which seems more likely? (Saying that hell is just because god made it and he is just - a child should be able to see the circularity of that argument. Maybe a good job I haven't been able to make the 'reassurance sessions'; I doubt I could hide my incredulity/contempt/sad­ness.)

      March 19, 2013

  • stells d.

    I've been onto the STWBC website and invited them to attend Will Storr's Adventures with the Enemies of Science
    I spent a large part of last Sunday's meeting talking to a young, intelligent, highly educated (degree in biology) guy who adamently maintained that he believed, to the letter, in the Noah's Ark story.
    I would genuinely love to see many of their church's members coming along to some of our meetings.

    March 13, 2013

    • Andre

      Ok, I accept I'm exaggerating a bit: they wouldn't have braved equaltorial rains, because They would only come across equatorial rain in Latin America. Yes, the Noah Ark story is not as implausible as I might have tried to portray it above.

      March 18, 2013

    • Georgi L.

      Perhaps you can ask 'biologist' Chris? Let's see what mental gymnastics he'll do for that. Legal costs ...hmm, yes ...we may have to start a fund soon 'cos though I was 'told off' (kidding :-)) for being too soft with all you lovely people on Wednesday, I think I may have to slap Ed Milliband soon - cultural mutilation of children is OK?! GRRRR ...hold me back from slapping him ...nooooo!

      March 18, 2013

  • Andre

    I will not be able to attend again. I've been asked to translate a couple of documents for tomorrow morning and will have to get on with it straight away. I hope the debate brings some light into the darkness!

    March 17, 2013

    • Adrian

      Your efforts to get along there have been thwarted every time... it's almost like divine intervention lol

      March 17, 2013

    • Andre

      No, I wouldn't say that. Someone needed a document translated urgently. I received an email which didn't have the email address of the sender. It said money was already in my account. I called the bank this morning and they said the money "simply appeared in your account". The person who asked me to translate the document only gave me his/her initials: INRI. I have to say, I've actually heard people telling me things which weren't far from this. At the Adventist Church they tell lots of stories about money coming their way at the very moment when they needed it. And I'm talking vast amounts of cash. It's funny that a man whose message was one of poverty should be in the business of doling out money lavishly.

      1 · March 18, 2013

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