Apparently the Catholic Church doesn’t like to give up its members very easily. A friend of mine and I tried to get ourselves excommunicated about 12 or 13 years ago by sending a letter to the Vatican declaring our dislike for the church. We even had a party scheduled to celebrate. Unfortunately, the Pope never got back to us (don’t worry, the party went ahead anyways).
Last year (2009) I decided to give this another try. I sent the following letter to the Pope and to my local bishop, and again, no reply. This year I resent a copy of this letter to the Pope and company, and included a link to my blog so that they could witness the result of my apostasy. I am eager to hear back from them, and have every intention of having another excommunication party when they finally come to their senses and get rid of me. If they do not get rid of me, then presumably they think that I am a worthy member of their clan, and as such I wonder if I could get on some sort of guest speaker circuit. I have some interesting ideas that I would love to share with their flock.
I will keep people posted on the details of this effort, and if/when I am successful, then I would be more than happy to help others to disaffiliate themselves from the Catholic cult. There is a fairly good article here on how to get yourself excommunicated. Without further adieu, here is a copy of my letter:
Dear Sir, … I am writing to inform you that I am an atheist. I do not believe in a god. I do not believe that any conscious force created the universe. I do not believe that Jesus Christ is the son of a god, and I do not believe that he was born of a virgin. I do not believe that people are killed and then come back to life, and thus I believe the story of the bible is much like a child’s fairy tale. I do not believe that there is a heaven or a hell.
I do believe that the Catholic Church is not, in principle, different than any other sect or cult. I believe that the Catholic Church instills fear into its followers so that it can wield power over them. I believe that controlling people through fear is immoral. I also believe that the Catholic Church operates in an authoritarian manner and I object to the way that many groups of people, such as women and homosexuals, have been denied the rights and dignity which they deserve.
I find it sad that the Catholic Church pushes religion on people when they are young and incapable of making their own decisions, and this speaks volumes about the lack of conviction that the Catholic Church has in its own ridiculous story. It seems that you do not expect that grown rational people will accept your faith as true, so you indoctrinate them from a young age through threats of eternal suffering and promises of eternal bliss. I detest the ignorance that you instill in people and mourn the loss of rational debate on important matters caused by the religious superstitions that you peddle.
As a principled and rational person, it pains me that someone, somewhere may be counting me as an adherent of an irrational superstition which has done and is doing irreparable harm to humanity and with which I profoundly disagree. Please remove my name from the records of the church, and record that I am no longer a Roman Catholic. Please send me confirmation of this action. Please do this as soon as possible.
Catholic Common Sense: FAIL