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I was asked to pray at an atheist funeral. why?

  1. sooner than later profile image62
    sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

    Next week I am to pray for a young man at his funeral who tragically died in a car accident. Our boys grew up together. It is very disheartening to see a promising young man be cut short of life. My boys are devestated as well. The father has asked me to lead the service, including a prayer. They are Atheist and the son was too. The father and I worked archeological sites together since the late 70's when I was an atheist. He specifically asked me "where his son is now" and I could tell he wanted some comfort.

    I've asked myself before if times of grieving are what started religion? Many can argue that it is. But that is not how I came to believe in a higher power which ultimately led me to God. And some of the sites I have visited were places where young virgin girls were sacraficed to pagan gods or children were placed as burnt offering. So pain in loss did not start many religions.

    I offer my sympathy and offer any helpful service to my life long friend that I can, but I will not offer falsified hope of eternal salvation without the acceptance of Jesus Christ. God knows the young mans heart and only He knows the answer to eternal life- so I cannot say the boy was saved. Why did he ask me to pray for him?

    I am looking for opinions on tasteful, yet truthful comfort. Let me know what you think. My enemies, keep it clean- I'm not in the mood. please

    1. Mark Knowles profile image61
      Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Tell him what you believe.

      He is going to burn in hell for eternity for  not accepting the love of jesus.

      I mean - you don't actually know anything - so just go with the garbage that makes you feel superior.

      That is what your religion teaches - is it not?

      Hide behind a user name and pretend to be a scientist as well - that should convert a few people. I guess?

      Be honest - that is what jesus would have wanted - I know - it s difficult for you - being the empathetic person you are. So sad - if only he had accepted jesus. You must feel very, very, very bad for not having converted him to the one true path to heaven.

      But that is life.........

      And accepting the consequences pf your beliefs to the exclusion of all other possibilities means......

      Only one way. No other ways. Hell for those who do not believe. Eternal pain - like god said.

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        not going there mark, I am there for a good friend. Please leave.

        1. tantrum profile image60
          tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          so you should keep it for yourself !!
          What are you doing posting your friend's grief in a forum ???
          Shame on you !!!!!!!

        2. Mark Knowles profile image61
          Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Really? You have been sticking that to everyone as what you believe for some time now.

          Only one way - right?

          Accept jesus or burn?

          That is what you have been telling me over and over and over and over. Or - does it some how not really make any sense now?

        3. 60
          bamananposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Hi, I would say a prayer without my thoughts as to this childs salvation and just ask God to give his family comfort, in their time of dispair. It is about compassion for your friend, Not about what you believe.

      2. tantrum profile image60
        tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        so here we go again with the 'believer' stuff ! GOD !! lol

      3. 0
        Millionheirposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        jesus that was quite harsh, it is true but it was a bullet to bite!

    2. yoshi97 profile image88
      yoshi97posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Meaningful prayers are never offered conditionally. Does the pastor excuse all sinners from the church when he leads them into prayer? Not in any church I have ever attended.

      If a person died an atheist then you offer the hope that he might somehow find the road at the last moment as he ascends toward judgment.

      We do not pass judgment in death - nor in life - as that power is not one given to us as mortal beings. If you find that statement contradictory to what you were taught, consider this ... if you picked an atheist off the street and judged them to be good and moral (regardless of beliefs) then would your believing so offer them a better place upon death? Sadly, no, as our own judgement mean nothing.

      As for what the father wanted ... he wanted nothing more than comfort, which is what one calls upon a friend for in times of need. This man knows you are not the gateway to salvation. He only asked you to to help him through a terrible time by offering up some hope that things could go well for his son. Offer him hope, as hope is the strongest message Christianity has to offer.

      If you believe in Jesus Christ then you will be saved ... that's hope that the afterlife will be better with nothing scientific to guarantee it will actually occur. However, ask anyone that believes and they will tell you no proof is needed ... hope becomes belief, and that's what you have to offer this gentleman.

      Even if the son isn't saved by your gesture, perhaps the father will be - and a soul saved is a worthy cause. If it weren't why would anyone bother to spread the word?

      With all of that said, be there for your friend ... it's the human thing to do as much as it is the Christian thing to do. smile

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Thankyou Yoshi.
        You have encouraging points and this is the type of conversation I was looking for.

        1. yoshi97 profile image88
          yoshi97posted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Glad I could help ... and to add to something you might not have considered ... what if this boy accepted Christ in his final moments on Earth? He could have done so, quietly, within his own heart and mind.

          No time clock is placed upon when one must accept - other than they must do so during their lifetime. As such, he truly could be onto his way to the Pearly Gates and your prayer for him would be whole and appropriate.

          I mention this as my great grandmother was an atheist most of her life, over an anger with god dealing with the early death of her husband. As she was dying she said she saw her husband and he told her to make peace with God - and she did. As such, I believe she went to heaven. smile

    3. Sa Toya profile image85
      Sa Toyaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      It is strange posting a question like this her I suppose but it's a good place to get feedback fast!

      Well just talk bout how nice he was to be around and what a good person he was.

      I believe in God/Jesus Christ. He knows what you believe like you said BUT your friend is looking for comfort so be a good friend and give him that.

      We do not know 'where' he is. I believe that is for God to know exactly. I believe a good person is a good person is a good person.I now faith/belief is needed but I do not believe God would condemn a good person...anyways enough of that just give him the comfort he needs. They do not believe in God so I don't think they are expecting you to pray exactly. You are close and your kids were close to their son- they just want some comfort and some love.

    4. 0
      sandra rinckposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      I can't believe you really need to ask yourself this question.

      1. Mark Knowles profile image61
        Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        You must have missed this bit:

    5. 61
      C.J. Wrightposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      This has happened to me before. It's really not a big deal.
      A eulogy is not for the deceaced but those left behind. The father although an athiest obviously knows your beliefs and still he ask for your help. Its not a big thing. No one is asking you to pass judgement, simply gather facts about that person's life. Use those facts to bring a smile to those mourning faces. What your doing is giving those left behind something good to remember. Thats it, a comforter. The prayer should be simple, asking for comfort and peace to those left behind. It doesn't have to be turned into a theological debate....and it shouldn't. If you feel compelled to say something rash(even if you feel in your heart its true), then politely decline to help.

    6. Jezzzz profile image78
      Jezzzzposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      As your friend is a atheist I think he is hoping that you can pray his son into heaven.  But he does not know that is not the way it works.  I would pray at his service though, hoping that through prayer that you can transform someones heart to become saved.  Through this heart ship you may save someone who will let his guard down during this period and God can get in and work on this individual to have him or her to change.

      1. Mark Knowles profile image61
        Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Nah - he is hoping that sooner can put his ridiculous beliefs aside and be a friend.

        Not much chance of that by the looks of things.

        Sad. sad

      2. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        That is what he is seeking. I am not the savior as one has lowly accused- but I could be a lesser light shining on the greatest light.

        1. yoshi97 profile image88
          yoshi97posted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Another way of looking at it is like planting acorns. Not all will sprout to grow into mighty oaks, but if you were to ponder your lifetime over which ones would you would be hesitent to ever plant the seeds. As such, you plant each seed with care and give hope that it will sprout roots and grow into a mighty oak.

          Pure faith is offered without prejudice with the hope that it will offer a better life to those who witness it. smile

          1. Mark Knowles profile image61
            Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            I have witnessed it and thank goodness I am not like that. Do I really have to be a lying scumbag to go to heaven?

            Count me out of that is the case - Oh - I am already out, ;LOLOLOLOLOLO Whew !

            1. Sa Toya profile image85
              Sa Toyaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              lol

            2. yoshi97 profile image88
              yoshi97posted 6 years ago in reply to this

              Mark, you're rolling me in with the zealots, but we both know different. Pure faith isn't Christianity ... it's a belief that being a good person is the right thing to do. For some, it's belief in God, for some it's Jesus, and for some it's belief in one's self.

              It's all about not being selfish and being there for others when you can. I judge no one as I'm not fit to do so - I have flaws of my own which prevent me from saying one perosn or another should be denied an afterlife - and I have nothing that could prove an afterlife actually exists.

              What I can say is that being a good person isn't a bad thing and that passing on hope for another is a good thing.

              For Sooner, it's belief in Jesus that leads to heaven and I respect him for his beliefs and respect what he believes in. For me, it's a bit of a different road, but both rides intertwine about the fact of being a good person and giving selflessly to others when one can.

              Just as I speak to Sooner about religion within the terms he believes I can speak to others in their terms. I'm not here to promote anyone's agenda, but rather, to show a person how their own beliefs allow them to do the right thing, even though they feel torn over doing so.

              For you Mark, I wouldn't tell you to say a prayer for someone, but rather, to convey how you feel saddened by their loss. And if asked if the boy went to heaven, I would suggest that you offer that, that information is beyond your capacity to know.

              I don't have a religious agenda and I'm not looking to convert anyone to a cause - I'm simply reaching out as a human being to help someone through a tough time. Call it Christianity or a selfless human spirit - I offer to help because I know it's the right thing to do.

              And Mark, I'm not asking you to find God, Jesus, or the holy spirit. I believe you are doing well enough in finding yourself, and I think you are a caring person capable of doing great things.

              For you, believing in what you can't see, feel, or touch isn't possible - but that makes you no less of a person than the next. If anything, it makes you honest to speak your doubts. That's why I follow your writings as you're a person who is always true to what he believes, and that's an admirable trait.

              No Mark, I'm not here to contrive your beliefs - I think they're fine the way they are and directly inline with who you are as a person. All I ask is that you offer me respect in return when I say that my beliefs are different, and that I would prefer you hold to your beliefs until a day should arise when you feel a need to change them because you choose to see things different.

              I hope that better explains my position. smile

          2. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Yoshi, you are a rare breed. I should not have started this thread obviously, but I thank you for your compassion and understanding. I know we cannot pick what will grow. I also know many wrote me off as unsaveable. God bless you.

    7. ambieca profile image80
      ambiecaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      I think that deep down your friend wants to believe in something eventhough up to this point he hasnt.  If he can find god through his loss it will give him some closure and comfort to know that his son is "somewhere" and not just gone.  In my opinion, and this is just my opinion, I would pray for him eventhough he is an athiest.  Maybe he will change his beliefs, maybe it will give him hope.  It may be life changing for him and his family.  Whatever you decide, the best of luck to you and I am sorry for such a loss.

    8. Allan Bogle profile image82
      Allan Bogleposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Sooner: Dont let all the vile comments (such as Mark calling you scum) get you down. It may be helpful for you to know that many atheists believe in God and pray. recent findings confirm this time and again. From what I remember around one in five believe in God and one in ten pray weekly.

      Remember what I once stated here recently, most atheists are the products of emotinal based trauma. I present some findings if you want.

      As to whether this young man was a Cristian, we cannot know. But like you said we do not know what he believed in the end. Many atheists harbor deep doubts (indeed most non-religious people are more superstitious that theists).

      1. earnestshub profile image88
        earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Inaccurate and full of bull as always. Back it up with a decent non-religionists link. smile
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFMmzKDonRY

        1. Allan Bogle profile image82
          Allan Bogleposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Earnest, you should be familiar with my style by now. I always have supporting evidence. (One of the things I noticed here on the Hub forums is how little (if any) third party sources are used by atheists. Outside of your youtube reference it is mostly just verbal babble).

          Survey after survey shows this time and again, year after year. I will post the latest surveys:

          The Pew Research Center on Religion and Public Life is the largest secular organization that takes polls on religious/non-religious views of Americans.

          One-in-five people who identify themselves as atheist (21%) and a majority of those who identify themselves as agnostic (55%) express a belief in God or a universal spirit:

          http://religions.pewforum.org/pdf/repor … ndings.pdf

          Thats right, more than 20% of atheists.

          A substantial number of atheists believe in Heaven and Hell, in fact more atheists believe in Hell than Jehovah's Witnesses. Also look at the percentage of atheists and agnostics who say they pray weekly: http://religions.pewforum.org/pdf/repor … ndings.pdf

          There has been such an influx in recent findings concerning atheists and their gullibility to the paranormal that even The Wall Street Journal had an article on it: http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB1 … DAyWj.html

          "The reality is that the New Atheist campaign, by discouraging religion, won't create a new group of intelligent, skeptical, enlightened beings. Far from it: It might actually encourage new levels of mass superstition. And that's not a conclusion to take on faith -- it's what the empirical data tell us."

          ""The Gallup Organization, under contract to Baylor's Institute for Studies of Religion, asked American adults a series of questions to gauge credulity. Do dreams foretell the future? Did ancient advanced civilizations such as Atlantis exist? Can places be haunted? Is it possible to communicate with the dead? Will creatures like Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster someday be discovered by science?"


          So who's more likely to believe in the supernatural?

          "While 31% of people who never worship expressed strong belief in these things, only 8% of people who attend a house of worship more than once a week did."
          "…[the study] shows that traditional Christian religion greatly decreases belief in everything from the efficacy of palm readers to the usefulness of astrology."


          The above was from a recent Gallup poll (another large polling organization here in the U.S.)

          Canadian survey: ("Canadians who believe in God are consistently more likely than atheists to highly value a range of characteristics that includes courtesy, concern for others, forgiveness, and patience")
          http://www.reginaldbibby.com/images/PC_ … CT0807.pdf

          This of course leads back to my premise about most atheists basing their stance on emotional trauma (such as Mark). Dr Paul Vitz who teaches psychology at New York University has released excellent work on how atheists are heavily influenced by emotional disturbances (Kleinen psychodynamics and religious aspects of hatred as a defense):
          http://psych.nyu.edu/vitz/ mechanism

          I bring this up after reading Mark's comments where he exploded, later calling sooner "scum", etc. Something about sooner's topic concerning a funeral really got to him so obviously there is a strong emotional attachment there...

          Anyway back to another poll. Another large secular polling organization, The Harris poll,after an exhausting survey found that eleven per cent of atheists declare themselves as religious.
          http://74.125.47.132/search?q=cache:33Z … &gl=us



          Those who never attend religious services are much more inclined to believe in UFO's and reincarnation that those who do attend services.
          http://www.harrisinteractive.com/harris … sp?PID=982

          There are other secular polls that show the high percentage of atheists who believe the claims of alternative medicine, the paranormal, etc. But the ones I presented above should be a good starting point. You can look up the other ones done this year.

          This stuff comes across my desk all the time. It's old news. Even the reincarnationist/atheist Sam Harriss was having to defend himself from this poll (as he also has favoable views on reincarnation). There is an odd link between some atheists and reincarnation that the polls keep showing up...

          1. earnestshub profile image88
            earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            I have little interest in these statistics. What do they prove? Nothing. They merely state the bloomin obvious, including the reason why anyone bothered to collect them! smile

            Atheists are people, this is typical of people, not atheists, and who cares anyway?

            1. Allan Bogle profile image82
              Allan Bogleposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              This is odd. If you didn't have any interest in these statistics then why did you ask for verification?

              Let's look at what you stated and requested from me: "Inaccurate and full of bull as always. Back it up with a decent non-religionists link."

              You asked me to back it up because you thought it was innacurate (you certainly cared about the stats at that point). I presented a ton of empirical data. You told me to back it up with a "decent non-religious link" which of course I did, presenting not one but several secular studies.

              Now that you found out that the empirical data does not agree with you, you immediately state "who cares anyway?" Obviously you did or would not have requested and set the parameters for the data in the first place. Now of course that you do not like the findings you reply with a bizarre statement that the polls represent that "atheists are people" and that this "is all about people"; then in the same sentence you claim it is "not about atheists."

              What is about this poll concerning atheists do you not understand? Self proclaimed atheists answered honestly, you just dont like the results.

              Here is the crux of the matter. After thinking that my premise was bull and "inaccurate" you wanted verification. I provided a lot of empirical data (and can provide more if you want). You dont like what the empirical data shows so you now you feign disinterest.

              Sorry my friend it doesn't work that way. On this forum I see this time and again. Atheists like to claim that evidence is the key to solving questions of belief, actions, stance etc. Unless of course it disagrees with them, then the empirical data is thrown to the wind and quick excuses are formulated.

              Of course I would ask that you present data (just like you asked me) that contradicts the findings but Im not holding my breath. You may not like what you find.

          2. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Allen, that is very interesting. I'm finding more and more why he is asking me the questions that he is. I am going to praise the Lord as we always should anyhow. Many tried to spin this into a salvation debate and took great offence the the question, but after some research of my own, I believe my friends have questions about their Creator. Amen.

      2. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I am only responsible for how I act and cannot control the actions of others. Thanks for the information- though I think atheists fit into a much wider realm of backgrounds. I will admit that in my years of being an atheist I pondered the possibility of God from time to time.

    9. Rod Marsden profile image85
      Rod Marsdenposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      The man who is asking you to pray at his son's funeral is a friend and he sees you as a friend. Take it from there. Make the prayer a simple heart felt one. You don't and shouldn't get into theology with him or anyone at a funeral. He probably only wants the comfort of knowing that you care and are happy to reach out in your way to show that you do care.

      Christians in the past have prayed for non-believers. It is you reaching out to God and asking and hoping for the best for this young man who died so tragically. You are not there to judge his beliefs or those of his father. Leave that to God. The Christian God is supposed to be forgiving and loving. Those are two great places to start the prayer.

      The man is hurting as I would be if I lost a son. You know what to say that won't touch upon differences in belief. Being a friend and showing some kindness sounds like a Jesus act to me. I could be wrong. If he wants to know where his son is going you can honestly say you don't know but you can also say that you hope it is a good place. Such a hope does no harm to your faith and beliefs. It is just hope. It might also be considered an act of good will. My thoughts at any rate.

    10. Unchained Grace profile image58
      Unchained Graceposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Although you state your friend is a self described atheist, the fact that he asked you to pray and voiced his concern to you as to where his son was going is an admission to you that he in fact does harbor a concern for his son's spiritual well-being as well as his own. A true atheist won't have those concerns.

      Rod Marsden hit the nail squarely on the head. It is good sound advice.

    11. ronjer1 profile image61
      ronjer1posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      the prayer requested from you is for the funeral, the service, the people, the whole atmosphere of the event, etc.
      if they are atheist, that is all they ask, something social.
      dont take it the wrong way.
      birthdays are for the individual....funerals are for all that are left behind.

    12. Make  Money profile image73
      Make Moneyposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Without reading through the whole thread I think you could include that only God is the judge.  I'm sure you will find the right words with Our Lords help.  I'm sorry for the loss of the young man.

    13. donnaisabella profile image83
      donnaisabellaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Gal 6:9  Let us not get tired of doing what is good, for at the right time we will reap a harvest-if we do not give up.
      Gal 6:10  So then, whenever we have the opportunity, let us practice doing good to everyone, especially to the family of faith.


      You have been ministering to your friend whether in word or in deed, now is the opportunity to show love by sharing the hope that you have. That is what we are called to do as you already know and there is nothing that ministers as love in action. Love, not because we want to be seen, but love because it comes from the depth of our hearts.

      I thank God for the opportunity he has given to you. I believe He has more interests at that funeral than just the young man who passed.

    14. bearclawmedia profile image60
      bearclawmediaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Deleted

      1. bearclawmedia profile image60
        bearclawmediaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        An atheist believes that we are all here as part of an evolutionary process. There is no creator in there life that speaks to them in their daily affairs. This is sad for people like Mark Knowles who think it is ok to speak of damnation to some one searching for guidance. Very naughty Mark. The creator loves and feels all, every ones suffering, every ones joy. The creator needs not the recognition of Mark or an atheist or myself. 

        One can pray without being denominational. One can offer prayer without speaking of the creator. One can offer thanks and speak of the world as the cosmos. Which in my view was created by the creator. Just my opinion.

        Most of all one can offer prayer for those who are left behind after the death of a loved one.

        Just a thought, and please do not be offended, but do we know that your friend did not find solace in a creator being in his last seconds? We do not. So give the benefit of the doubt for those that remain. Speak of your friends lack of belief if you feel it is appropriate. What ever you decide use your heart to guide you not the words of others. May the creator shine on you and those you love.

      2. 0
        Brenda Durhamposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Tell him his son is in the hands of God, to do with as He chooses, and that no one except God knows what happens between a person and God as they're faced with death.

        Tell him that while he (the boy's father) is alive is the time for him to choose who he will serve.

        I think the fact that the guy asked you to pray for his son is either one of two things-----he believes that someone can "pray someone into" heaven even after they're dead,

        or else he believes there really is a God.
        or both.

        I don't think there really are any athiests!   There are only people who refuse to admit they believe.

      3. tantrum profile image60
        tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Maybe you forgot.

      4. Diskobolos profile image60
        Diskobolosposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        As such a great believer you should not be thinking so much of your enemies. And if there really are your enemies, why do you think they care in what kind of mood you are?smile

        Back on topic, saying that you will not offer falsified hope without the acceptance of Jesus Christ is something you should be ashamed of. Instead of worrying about all this religious B.S. try to be a real friend and caring and make that tragic moment a bit more bareable for your friend, without conditioning him with your religious belief.

      5. 0
        arvinoposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        The problem with many is that it is impossible to define something that is not subject to the definition of thought or reasoning. Neither can it be explained through human experience which makes all of us subject to personal enterpretation. God is a Spirit, and Love is a action. Both is not bound by laws or reasoning of man making it impossible to hold in a box or religion. This is the problem for man who try to do just that. But Love and spirit is free and you can only find both of these in the author and the revealer of it, Jesus Christ.

      6. tobey100 profile image61
        tobey100posted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Couldn't hurt

    15. Marisa Wright profile image93
      Marisa Wrightposted 6 years ago

      That's a tough gig, sooner.  IMO, you're right about grieving, or specifically death, and religion. There are several stories of famous atheists having deathbed conversions.  It always seemed hypocritical to me - almost as if they decided to take out an insurance policy at the last minute! 

      Obviously it would be totally inappropriate to say anything in a prayer which you don't believe.  I don't know what your system of belief is, and therefore I don't know where you believe his son is, so I can't really advise on what you could say.  I wish you the best of luck in working it out.

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Thanks Marisa. I suppose my beliefs are somewhat unique to most branches of Christianity-

        I am thinking of keeping the prayer more shallow(for lack of better words) than I would for say someone who passed in my church.

        1. livelonger profile image90
          livelongerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Good idea.

        2. 0
          thetruthhurts2009posted 6 years ago in reply to this

          It's a dilly of a pickle to say the very least. Keep it "shallow" is a good place to start. Death is a sobering experience when someone passes away  tragically people began to realize there is more to life than the materialistic. They asked you because you are a witness for Christ, a light if you will. The truth of God will resonate, but for some it will be too late. Sorry for the lost, pray for the right words.

          1. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Indeed. thanks truth

      2. thevoice profile image61
        thevoiceposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        not last minute  truth found in all human life

    16. livelonger profile image90
      livelongerposted 6 years ago

      Remember "if you don't have anything nice to say, then don't say it."

      Since you're incapable of saying anything nice about your speculations about his afterlife, why not concentrate on who this young man was when he was alive. Keep your thoughts about what happened after his death to yourself.

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Its not that I don't have anything nice to say. The young man was an absolute delight to be around. He was always welcome at our house and he had the most creative sense of humor. I really will miss him.

        Why is his atheist father and my friend seeking eternal comfort when I have told him my beliefs for many years?

        1. livelonger profile image90
          livelongerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          They are not. If they are atheist, they don't really care for your ideas about the afterlife. They would like you to talk about what a delight he was while he was alive.

          Again, keep your speculations about his afterlife to yourself; the grieving parents have absolutely no interest in hearing them. This is not the time to indulge in self-righteousness.

          1. glendoncaba profile image81
            glendoncabaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            You are right.  Pray to comfort the living.  Let the preacher deal with the heavy stuff, which is also for the living.  Leave the eternal destiny part to Jesus.  Just comfort the living.

            Will there be a homily? 

            Email me the order of service and I may offer a few tips on your role in the service.  Yes, I am a pastor, though as I have said elsewhere I am no longer in full time ministry.

            I have preached at numerous funerals for unchurched community members.  The key is to minister to the living, and leave judgement to God.

            1. sooner than later profile image62
              sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              Thank you Glendoncaba- I will email you. you are SDA as well if i remember? Sooner.

        2. Mark Knowles profile image61
          Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Wow

          You really are a scutter.

          They are not asking for your "eternal comfort" - which you are not qualified to give.

          They are asking for your support as a friend.

          Can you do that? Or is jeebus more important?

          And kind of sad that this is where you ask for advice. So - either you are lying - or this is where you get your advice....

    17. aware profile image70
      awareposted 6 years ago

      why? just in case thats whylol

    18. earnestshub profile image88
      earnestshubposted 6 years ago

      Why should Mark or anyone else leave?
      You posted this apparently very personal thread to further your beliefs! I would never dream of asking such a question on a private matter between me and a long term friend on a public forum and nor would anyone else who had a sense of taste or decency!
      I'm disgusted!

      1. tantrum profile image60
        tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Yes! that's what I said !

        'so you should keep it for yourself !!
        What are you doing posting your friend's grief in a forum ???
        Shame on you !!!!!!!'

        Of course he will never reply for it's a shame !

      2. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        You will go at any depth to counter me. that is all you are showing. The three trolls I expected, are here.

        I thought you all could be decent in my time of grieving. guess not.

        1. tantrum profile image60
          tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          you should grieve alone with your friends. Not in a forum.We are not your friends

          1. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            your opinion is noted. I remember that you comforted Crazd for her grandfathers passing.

            1. tantrum profile image60
              tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              She's my friend. And she wasn't talking about religion stuff. You are !
              You are displaying your friend's grief to make a point ! Shame !!

          2. glendoncaba profile image81
            glendoncabaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Yea but you could at least back off with this one.  Strangely, this forum creates a feeling of community that can be mistaken for genuine humanity hence his turning to us in a time of grief.

    19. earnestshub profile image88
      earnestshubposted 6 years ago

      No trolls here. Three well established hubbers who write real hubs.
      <snipped - no personal attacks>

    20. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      I must have failed to note that the father wants to know that his son is in heaven now.

      1. livelonger profile image90
        livelongerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I thought you said he was an atheist?

        1. tantrum profile image60
          tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this
        2. livelonger profile image90
          livelongerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          sooner: Why would an atheist want to know that his son was in heaven? Are you making this up?

          1. 61
            C.J. Wrightposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            people get emotional with death, especially with the death of a child.

          2. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            I don't know. For one, nobody ever expects the sudden death of a loved one- especially so young. I am wondering if this empty feeling is fairly common. I have heard of "saved" stories on the deathbed. I suppose it is not so hard to understand his comfort desire in a time of loss. I wish I were making this up.

            1. Mark Knowles profile image61
              Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL


              Scum

            2. Sa Toya profile image85
              Sa Toyaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              No it's not hard to understand his need to be comforted, the man just lost his son. 'SAVED'deathbed story or not...be there, and be comforting. Jesus befriended all.

      2. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I must add he is nothing like those posting here. He is educated and humble.

        1. Mark Knowles profile image61
          Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

          Doesn't get much lower than this........

          lol lol lol

          Scum.

    21. Tom Cornett profile image56
      Tom Cornettposted 6 years ago

      What would Jesus do?

    22. habee profile image90
      habeeposted 6 years ago

      Sooner, you probably already know this, but in one of the "lost books" of the Bible, it says that nonbelievers will have a second chance after death. Remember that your job will be to comfort the family and friends of the young man. Celebrate his life and relate how many others he touched. Sorry for your loss of a friend.

    23. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      Let me add something. None of you know me. None of you know my name. The most anyone knows about me is the state I come from and what I did for a living. Finding personal connections to this family or my family could never happen.
      I keep it that way.

      I was just feeling down from the loss. I am amazed my enemies took this as a free for all. I have only spoken my beliefs to you. That is why you do not like me.

      1. yoshi97 profile image88
        yoshi97posted 6 years ago in reply to this

        And some friends have spoken up to aid you as well ... let us not forget. smile

        1. sooner than later profile image62
          sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          yes, thank you.

          1. Mark Knowles profile image61
            Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Yes -

            Either he is asking for validation - which will never be forthcoming - or he really recanted and was saved in the end. Or he is lost.

            All good really. wink

            Either way - you win. And are a liar.

            No one would ask you to do this - if this is the persona you have shown them.

            So sad. sad

            Jesus would be proud though. Excellent.

      2. earnestshub profile image88
        earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        No, that is not true. I do not dislike you. I abhor your beliefs, but I do not do hate of people. smile

        1. Mark Knowles profile image61
          Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          This is a pretty disgusting ploy. Perhaps the most despicable I have seen.

          1. tantrum profile image60
            tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            What a drama !! And only to try to make a so obvious point !!

            1. sooner than later profile image62
              sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              your opinion is noted as well. find the door.

              1. tantrum profile image60
                tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                R U the owner of HP ?
                I will post whatever and whenever and wherever I decide!
                thanks !

      3. livelonger profile image90
        livelongerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        It's clear to me now that you have fabricated some or all of this story. I can certainly judge you based on your own actions.

        1. sooner than later profile image62
          sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          your opinion is noted. please go away.

          1. livelonger profile image90
            livelongerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Not an opinion. You haven't explained how an atheist suddenly has an interest in seeing their son to heaven.
            Do you just have a different definition of "atheist"? Maybe a Christian who doesn't go to church?

            1. sooner than later profile image62
              sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              He is an atheist, as I was for over 30 years. All I can figure is the sudden realization that his son is gone has him asking some questions. I did not realize that this subject would be such a nerve agent for many-

              this is not a salvation thread for those involved.

              1. livelonger profile image90
                livelongerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                Got it. Thanks.
                The sensitivity has to do with the thought of someone telling grieving parents that their dead child is destined for hell. If his parents were truly atheist, they wouldn't take such a pronouncement seriously, but they would be deeply offended as such hellfire-and-brimstone language isn't welcome at a wake.

    24. Sa Toya profile image85
      Sa Toyaposted 6 years ago

      roll

      Just comfort your friend...dude

    25. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      This has hit a nerve and it is hitting me now. I asked in the opening statement for some compassion. please leave this before I say something I will regret. Mark you have name called plenty. Please go away.

      1. Mark Knowles profile image61
        Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I have not name called. Do you feel persecuted for your beliefs?

        Sorry you are unable to be a friend when your friend asks you.

        This is - sadly - the problem with believing the garbage you believe.

        Was the young man gay? That would be even worse. How can you tell the poor father his son is double burning in hell? A dilemma - I agree. Did he have lustful thoughts? Was he a liberal? How many times can you burn in hell?

        Might be worth rethinking your ridiculous, hate filled beliefs? IDK. WWJD? lol

    26. Lady_E profile image82
      Lady_Eposted 6 years ago

      Sooner

      It's only natural in life that when people pass through hard or challenging times - they ask for a prayer to be said.  Even in our Forums here, some people have passed through tough times and asked for prayer.

      In such situations, I would never question the faith of that person. Infact, it never comes to mind. They are human like me. So, I'm quite happy to offer a prayer like everyone else does in such postings. So, don't question why he asked you, just pray. He knows you, respects you and probably finds comfort in the fact that you'll pray.

      Best Wishes.

    27. SweetiePie profile image84
      SweetiePieposted 6 years ago

      Maybe you can make it more of a eulogy because honestly that would be a bit more appropriate.  Share some of the books and movies this person enjoyed.  Share a few stories that show the beauty this person brought into the world.  Have you ever seen the movie Love Actually?  Liam Neeson has a eulogy photo montage for his late wife.  Something like that might be a bit over the top, but focus more on a eulogy aspect of it.  Funerals are to help people grieve and to move on, and there is really no need to mention anything about religion.

    28. treasuresyw profile image60
      treasuresywposted 6 years ago

      The truth is that you should do the prayer because this an opportunity to show the real love of God & Christ. Jesus did not only touch and heal those that believed on him. He healed them and then they believed. Though the son has passed, the prayer could be for another that needs healing of the heart. Ask God for the words to say in any situation. It is always a wonderful thing to be able to show the love of God to others who think that Christians and Seekers are all talk. We can't force people to believe what we do but we can pray comfort for their loss. We can pray peace in the heart of those that are disturbed and we can pray that God shows them what He would have them know. If you believe that your prayers are heard, trust that God will do the leading. Peace

      1. Marisa Wright profile image93
        Marisa Wrightposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Good post, Treasure.

        1. sooner than later profile image62
          sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Yes it was, thank you treasure. Thank you Lady_E as well.

      2. Lady_E profile image82
        Lady_Eposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        You couldn't have put it in a better way.

      3. terced ojos profile image71
        terced ojosposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        It's hard to know what to believe or who to listen to in the Christian world.  I heard a well known pastor on the radio say that he was asked to say a prayer for a young man who had passed away.  The pastor went on to say that he would not say a prayer for the young man because he knew that in life the young man had led a sinful life.  Hmmmm. It's very confusing parsing out which parts of the things God does are out of love and which parts are out of hate.  As I read more and more of the character of God; the preponderance of the evidence seems to suggest that God is a man. A jealous, vengeful, gambling, loving, punishing, merciful, child murdering, egotistical brute of a man.  I would say that given this evidence God most definitely made man in his own image.

        1. mohitmisra profile image60
          mohitmisraposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          lol

          The Death point is considered crucial as this is the moment one can merge with the Light.Prayers are used to guide the soul back home to god.

          1. terced ojos profile image71
            terced ojosposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            OOOOk. So your point would be that because the young man was a sinner.  The pastor didn't want to help him find his way to the light and God but rather he wanted the young man to go to hell? Please help me to understand the point you are trying to make.

        2. sooner than later profile image62
          sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          an apropriate place to insert God hate speach?

          1. terced ojos profile image71
            terced ojosposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Sorry if you think I was posting hate speech.  In many circles what I wrote about God is generally accepted as truth; even among Christians.  Oh Christians don't voice their confusion but they have the same questions.  Like why did God kill the first born children of Egypt if they were just babies...I mean babies are innocent aren't they...Justification and apologetics aside it's a pretty hard pill to swallow when you think that babies are being killed by God.  That's just one example of the confusion I have about the "all loving God" you seem to honor. So I guess you have a problem with questions asked in sincerity; I guess you have a problem with people who actually think critically and ask questions that are generally obvious to most people.  Why is that? I mean your God is supposed to be a God of truth right? So why the defensive "an appropriate sight for God hate speech" crack?

            1. sooner than later profile image62
              sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              The Egyptian Pharo ordered first born Jews to die first. Then all male children second. Then Egyptians were warned fairly about what was to come and still they heeded warning. Was it vengeful? Probably so, but a death to God is not the same. He can do with that dead child what he wishes, and it is my belief that He takes their souls for heaven because He is fair- who knows. He said "You will not understand My ways" but we know He is just and fair.

              1. terced ojos profile image71
                terced ojosposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                See here's the thing about an almighty God.  God knows all so God knew Pharoah would say what he said; in point of fact Pharoah was ordering the death of all the first born of Israel and God changed the order.  Either way God killed babies. So whether you want to play games with words or find some funky way of justifying the fact that God killed babies it's just friggin sick. It makes you understand how Christianity can be so brutal and justify the evils it continues to do in the world.

                1. sooner than later profile image62
                  sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                  were you not previously pleading for sensible conversation while justifying your behavior relating to ill informed questions? I would say the questions are ill informed because they are questions in which your mind is made up already and you have no historical refference. It always appears to me that non-believers don't like the idea nor understand free will. As you have stated above, you don't like that the all knowing God could let pharoah say his piece and keep his heart cold. However, 6 plagues later and direct contact with Moses should have educated the proud man weeks in advance. He was even informed that his eldest son would die if he did not release Gods people. I think the story is more about listening then it is about Gods creation being taken back.

                  1. greeneyesH1982 profile image60
                    greeneyesH1982posted 6 years ago in reply to this

                    sooner this is off the topic but i have a quick question if u dont mind.. i was wondering why by my name it says i have 8 followers but then on my profile page it only shows 2?

                    1. sooner than later profile image62
                      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                      I'm not sure. maybe you need to approve the fans that you have. Go to 'my account' and clear the fans.

        3. tantrum profile image60
          tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Agree.
          And as for believers, God is All, he must be hate as well. A lot of passages in the Bible proofs this.
          And if we're made  as his own image, what kind of a god is that ?!

    29. SweetiePie profile image84
      SweetiePieposted 6 years ago

      Well if the family is atheist a prayer may not be appropriate.  A eulogy, on the other hand, would simply be a short talk that commended the life of a person that ended way too soon.  We even had a very nice eulogy at our graduation for a boy that was killed in a car accident, and there was no mention of religion.

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I really feel he and his wife are looking for truth at this point. I will not mention religion- but I will offer prayer to the Lord as he has asked of me.

        1. SweetiePie profile image84
          SweetiePieposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Your truth is not theirs.  If they decide to attend church with you that is one thing, but if they simply want you to speak at his funeral that is another thing completely.

          1. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            It is a terrible task that I do not look forward to.

            1. SweetiePie profile image84
              SweetiePieposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              But if you cared about this boy, I am sure you will be able to do it for them.  You can always pray on your own remember, but I think you should respect the feelings of this family.  Without being pushy you could invite them to a church event or something like that saying you want them to get out.  If they accept then maybe in the future you can share your feelings about faith with them.  I just do not think at a funeral is the place to do it, and honestly they may be upset about it.

      2. earnestshub profile image88
        earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        That is probably a good suggestion SP. smile

    30. earnestshub profile image88
      earnestshubposted 6 years ago

      Just wondering......
      Why is it that the religious fanatics always have some self glorifying profile name? smile

    31. SweetiePie profile image84
      SweetiePieposted 6 years ago

      How do you make that cool purple flower thingy?

      1. earnestshub profile image88
        earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Put your mouse over this one, right click and copy the url from the properties.
        then in front of it put {img} and behind it put [/img]
        Don't leave any spaces.
        If you copy and paste with the gif or picture number changed you will get different ones. Have fun!

        You can also reply and when the edit button opens you will see the finished script just like I said, with the img part included.

        Just copy the line above in the reply box. smile

    32. Daniel Carter profile image89
      Daniel Carterposted 6 years ago

      Perhaps your friend is doing the most natural thing for him at this time--he's reaching out because it's a pretty miserable experience to grieve alone. You've been friends with him a long time, so he's putting all differences aside. It might be a good thing to call a truce on beliefs on either side and address the human side of things, which in this case are very emotionally based.

      If your friend requested a prayer, it's okay for you to ask him if he's sure about this. If he is, offer a simple, sincere prayer. Maybe about the family finding peace.

      The rest of the drama in this thread is irrelevant. It's just noise as usual.

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Indeed, thank you Daniel. There has been some great advice that will help me comfort my friends in time of need.

    33. Uninvited Writer profile image83
      Uninvited Writerposted 6 years ago

      I just randomly changed the number:

      1. earnestshub profile image88
        earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Well, you are always one of the bright sparks around here, it took me longer to work it out when I grasped it! smile

    34. SweetiePie profile image84
      SweetiePieposted 6 years ago

      {img]http://planetsmilies.net/animal-smiley-4932.gif[/img]

    35. SweetiePie profile image84
      SweetiePieposted 6 years ago
      1. earnestshub profile image88
        earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Yep! another smart one. smile

        1. SweetiePie profile image84
          SweetiePieposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          It took me a couple of tries, but now I am getting it. smile

          1. Sa Toya profile image85
            Sa Toyaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            {img}http://planetsmilies.net/animal-smiley-7.gif[/img]

            I wanted to play along too

            1. Sa Toya profile image85
              Sa Toyaposted 6 years ago in reply to this
              1. earnestshub profile image88
                earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                smile smile smile

                1. SweetiePie profile image84
                  SweetiePieposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                  I am addicted to this!

    36. shazwellyn profile image84
      shazwellynposted 6 years ago

      I was asked to pray at an atheist funeral. why?

      Because a funeral is for the living (a rite of passage to grieve) and not for the dead. x

    37. aguasilver profile image87
      aguasilverposted 6 years ago

      When a very good friend of mine died, her husband asked if I would do the funeral for her, and I refused.

      I refused because Annie had spoken with me many times and made it perfectly clear that she was not interested in Christ or Christianity or indeed any religion, and I respected that, and she was still a very close and dear friend.

      She comforted me when needed, she fed me when times were short, our boys played together daily, she even defended me when her less cultured friends tried to bait and mock my belief.

      She was a star, and if her husband had asked me to speak at her memorial, I would have gladly done so, but he was a lapsed Catholic and he wanted me to 'do' a religious service, and had I done so, I could have 'witnessed' to about 400 people who attended, most of whom were also atheists.

      But her memory was worth more than that, and she would have hated having any religious service, and I respected HER wishes, and after all a remembrance is what the person remembered would have desired.

      I attended her service, and the husband had found a tame preacher who would take the money and tell lies about someone he never knew, and offend all her friends and make futile (as he was already discredited) attempts at 'witnessing' to the assembled 'mourners'..... who were not mourners at all.

      Afterwards we all went to a beach bar and celebrated her life as she would have wanted, on a beach, with a good BBQ and an open bar.

      Her children spoke to me about her, I guess as the 'resident' believer who they had known all their childhood, and I neither lied nor told them what I understood in accordance with scripture.

      We have an obligation to the living and the dead.

      I had covered the bases of belief with Annie years earlier, nothing more needed to be said.

      For her children, it was best that they remembered their mother as they wanted to, and although I was disturbed that the 'rent a preacher' had given the bland and falsehood testimony that is designed to fool the weak in faith into believing that all will be 'with the Lord' upon death, I did nothing to dissuade them that her eternity was secured, neither did I repeat the lie.

      Annie would be surprised to find life after death, and I would hope that if she was she would be judged upon her merits rather than her declarations.

      Mark is correct in that according to scripture she would not be entitled to entrance into eternity with God.... as for the burning in hell for eternity.... who knows?

      The early church fathers preached a form of universal salvation until Constantine took over the western arm of the church and made it his own.

      The RCC made it a sales point that in order to evade hell and damnation you MUST believe in Christ, and ONLY through their franchise.

      Mention universal salvation today and most orthodox believers will shout heretic, but then most of them will have NEVER actually spent the time to study the subject.

      Just for mentioning it here, many believers would mark me as a heretic.

      I simply do not know for sure what God's opinion is on this matter.

      As to what you should do, well if you decide to do the funeral, please do not lie to the family, nor should you destroy their hope if they have any.

      You have been asked to do it as a family friend who loved the son as much as them.

      Maybe in their grief their non belief has been challenged.

      If that is the case, then let the Holy Spirit do the talking to them, your job is to cover them in prayer and be honest without offering or giving offence.

      This is NOT an opportunity to 'witness to the lost' - it is a time to comfort the grieving.

      I hope that God gives you wisdom and courage to discern the correct path to take.

      Do not distress these people further.

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Thank you Agua-
        I am looking more to comfort my friends in a time of need. I too find no door for glory or self exaltation in the matter- but am merely offering comfort within the boudaries of my belief.(I could not/nor would I drink to his memory at an open bar) I think I will make a prayer of comfort to the family as many have suggested and my friend has requested.

        Thank you all for your help and support of the subject. Those who stooped farther than I anticipated- please find compassion within your hearts. Our differences should never exude such hateful remarks.

        I am out. Sooner

        1. aguasilver profile image87
          aguasilverposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Thank you sooner, I understand your refusal to drink at an open bar, however I am blessed that I can take a drink without needing the other six or more, my Lord gave me liberty in return for my surrendering my 'freedom'.

          I live in Spain, many things are different in Spain, but I know American believers have taboos about alcohol and respect them.

      2. Kidgas profile image79
        Kidgasposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        That was great for you to respect your friend in that way.

    38. 0
      Will Bensonposted 6 years ago

      In your original post you said...

      "The father has asked me to lead the service, including a prayer. They are Atheist and the son was too. The father and I worked archeological sites together since the late 70's when I was an atheist. He specifically asked me "where his son is now" and I could tell he wanted some comfort."

      Your friend is devastated and is looking to you for comfort. Maybe he wants a prayer included out of respect for those at the service who are not atheists. Anyhow, no one knows what the boys final thoughts were so who can judge what his ultimate fate may be? Re: The Sermon on the Mount...

      "Blessed are those who mourn; for they shall be comforted."

      My opinion is that it would be best to comfort your friend in any way you can.

      I am deeply sorry for your loss.

    39. earnestshub profile image88
      earnestshubposted 6 years ago

      Aqua, I see a very good honest heart. I feel your generosity of spirit to be very appealing. I don't do god or religion as you know, but I can spot decency a mile off! Good post! smile

      1. tantrum profile image60
        tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Agree!!

        1. aguasilver profile image87
          aguasilverposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Thanks ernest, and tantrum, as I settle into these pages it becomes apparent who disagrees, yet respects the rights of others, and who do not.

          It's good to know that you will both give a fair hearing to decency, and acceptable that you jump on bigotry.

          I have no doubt we will disagree on things, yet still remain civilized in our diversity. hmm

          1. tantrum profile image60
            tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            We'll always be!

            cool

    40. Shadesbreath profile image90
      Shadesbreathposted 6 years ago

      Don't do it.  Everything you have written from the orginal post to most comments since prophesy that you are going to leak pity during your prayer/eulogy/encomium because you clearly are incapable of moving from the absolute certainty you have. That certainty is fine, it's your right, but you will be cruel beyond measure if you let that sanctimonious pseudo-pity dribble into the misery of this family's pooling tears. I do not believe you are capable of preventing it given what I've just read.

      The fact that you aren't sure what to do, the fact that this is even an issue for you at all, is evidence of a conflict between dogma and what you seem to actually believe is friendship.  Find another priest or whatever to do it.  If you leak one syllable of "Oh, sweet boy that he was, it's a shame he won't be saved," if even the scent of that attitude comes out in your words or your posture or your tone of voice, through the Biblical allusions you use, your metaphors, if one ounce of pity for his tragic condemnation is even hinted at, you will have perpetrated a most heinous betrayal of trust and friendship. 

      Honestly, this whole forum thread reeks of condescension, even if you don't mean it to.  If this is a real question, I am certain you would be a better friend to this person if you helped them find someone better suited to this epideictic task.  Seriously.

      Don't do it.

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I am confused as to why anyone would think I might make the prayer relate to the boys salvation. I have clearly stated that I am not certain of his salvation, nor is anyone other than God Himself. Even more I do not understand why many people felt an unwaranted urge to attack me in a time of mourning. For those of you having a hard time obtaining information about the father asking for my biblical knowledge and/or opinion, I suggest you re-read the thread in repect to his demands. I think it is a fair question to ask for advice especially when nobody could make the connection to that family. Many of you simply dislike me and therefor avoid reading pertinent information that would lead you to an educated response. It really boils down to a dislike in Christ and it reeks a putrid smell of prejudice for anyone who oposes their form of belief.

        I have supported nearly all of my cases with biblical support- one thing the insulting type of this thread cannot stand. For that I am not sorry.

        1. Shadesbreath profile image90
          Shadesbreathposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Yes, you have CLEARLY stated that you are NOT certain of his salvation.  And there is nothing that a mourning family in search of solace, even if temporary solace in their atheist eyes, wants to hear less than a eulogy that can't commit itself to the hope of something better for their lost child.  Your clear lack of certainty will transmit to them, which is why you should find someone else who is willing to be certain in his or her hope for something comforting to them. 


          I did not attack you.  I gave you an honest and considered reply to the question you posed. I observed your rhetorical choices throughout what you have said, extracted the ethos you created with it, and gave the response your original post asked for from the public to whom you addressed it and of which I am a part.  If you feel you have been attacked by me, you are not reading my reply carefully at all, and you are projecting motives or hostility on me erroneously.

            I read it very carefully, which is why I responded as I did.  If you count yourself a friend, you really should consider what I suggested honestly, outside of the public forum here.  Sometimes being a real friend requires doing so quietly, with no spotlight or recognition at all.  Do the right thing quietly.  No one will know you did the right thing but you and God.  But that's okay. 

          Ridiculous, broad-brushed, one-size-fits-all nonsense like that is the sort of thing that will make people mock you.  Do you have any idea how ironic it is to say that people who dislike you and "avoid reading pertinent information... boils down to a dislike in Christ..." that "reeks...of prejudice."  Dude, that's you being prejudice against people who disagree with you and pre-judging them as Christ-haters.  Very sad, although the irony was fun.
           

          Bottom line, I still say, don't do it.  Do your friend a favor and find someone who doesn't have ANY qualms of conscience or inner doubts or anything. It's too emotional for you and even the chance you will let out your uncertainty about the boy's eternal salvation will be like poison to that grieving family. Or is that what you secretly want?

          1. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Many have helped with the subject. You must ask youself questions too Doctor Phil? Please

    41. 0
      SirDentposted 6 years ago

      Pray in the Spirit Sooner. The Holy Ghost will guide you in what to pray.

      Sidenote, pay no attention to the Richard Noggins in this thread.

    42. pylos26 profile image77
      pylos26posted 6 years ago

      I see no validity in ghost or goblings.

    43. Lady Guinevere profile image62
      Lady Guinevereposted 6 years ago

      Now, can you tell us the same things without using the scriptures as a crutch?

      1. donnaisabella profile image83
        donnaisabellaposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Psa 119:11  Your word O' Lord, have I hidden in my heart, that I may not sin against you.

    44. Shadesbreath profile image90
      Shadesbreathposted 6 years ago

      Allan and Earnest:

      The problem with statistical data is that it is always used as evidence for arguments to which the data quoted has no relation. For example, saying that a higher percentage of atheists believe in ghosts than do Christians has absolutely nothing to do with the atheist believing in a God nor does it actually relate reciprocally between the two parties.  Ghosts can be a natural phenomenon in someone's belief system whereas an omnipotent being strikes them as unbelievable at all.  Linking that "statistic" to the percentage of Christians who believe in Ghosts is fallacious as far as point-making goes, because typically, Christians are taught by their faith not to believe in ghosts as their faith has already explained where souls go etc.  The two beliefs don't work together to make the point you are trying to make.

      The "statistic" about atheists who pray to god or believe in Christian heaven is also meaningless for anything beyond proving that people don't know what an atheist is.  If they pray to god or believe in Christian heaven, they are not atheists regardless of what they say or wrote on a survey form.  I can claim to be Spiderman but that does not make the statement "based on the data, Spiderman's feet don't stick to walls or ceilings" worth bringing up in an argument. It's meaningless, despite it's statistical "truth," because I am not, in fact, Spiderman.

      Just thought I'd point that out to keep things real.

      1. yoshi97 profile image88
        yoshi97posted 6 years ago in reply to this

        You're not spiderman???

        (Yoshi's eyes well up in tears)

        I believed in you man! I believed! smile

        1. Shadesbreath profile image90
          Shadesbreathposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          big_smile

    45. Bovine Currency profile image59
      Bovine Currencyposted 6 years ago

      Obviously the prayer has nothing to do with the belief system of the deceased atheist.  You will be praying to your God and not his. 

      Two of my grandparents died in the last 12 months, I was sad.  I was not sad for them, they died.  They were both in pain.  In any case, my belief is that they cannot hurt if they are not alive.  They will not be offended after death.  Pray if you like, your prayers are not for him, or at least that is how he would see it if he were still alive.  Do what you need to do.

      1. 0
        lyricsingrayposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        good point.

    46. goldenpath profile image81
      goldenpathposted 6 years ago

      As a clergy I have come across this a few times with those who proclaim atheism.  I'll approach it with two words of counsel:
      1)  Often, in their hearts, an atheist who asks such a puzzling request is probably not a "die-hard" atheist.  They have just taken the path of least resistance.  They (only referring to atheists who make these requests) are wanting answers but do not yet know where to find them.  So approach it from that perspective that they are actually indifferent rather than atheist when it comes to views on deity.  When it comes to matters of the spirit no one wants to be wrong but they want to believe in something.  At times, though, the easiest answer is a mindset and path of no God at all.
      2)  If you approach it from this mode than it is not blasphemy to succor the request but do so with faith and fervent conviction of heart.  IF, after talking in depth with this individual, they hold true to a doctrine of no God at all then I would suggest declining the duty.  A funeral is a time to be submissive and inclined to hear and ponder the words spoken.  If that wall of pride remains intact your words will be fruitless and of no worth.

      Either way you go it will NOT damn the deceased to perdition.  No live human being has the right to proclaim such rhetoric.  As the funeral voice you are announcing doctrines of salvation according to your beliefs.  Obviously it is respected to a point or you would not have been asked to take on such a privilege.  Salvation and judgement of an individual is the sole duty of deity.

    47. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      indeed, thank you.

    48. KCC Big Country profile image84
      KCC Big Countryposted 6 years ago

      Having been an atheist mother who has lost a young son, allow me to give you my perspective. 

      As several before me have said, the prayers are for those grieving friends and relatives left behind.  Even though I am an atheist, not all of those who grieved for my son are.  I asked that the prayer be done in a generic comforting manner and explained my situation to the pastor being asked to do it.  The pastor we chose did an excellent job of riding that line.  I think it was the perfect compromise between religious beliefs.  Grieving is difficult enough without all that other crap.

      My guess is, this friend of yours thought you'd be the perfect person to ride that line as well.

      Regarding what the grieving dad may or may not be wondering regarding his son's location, it's part of the grieving process and even I went through that.  Losing a child will make you question every ******* think you thought you knew.

    49. 0
      sneakorocksolidposted 6 years ago

      Atheism is an internal struggle in an individual to find truth. They want more than faith to be the answer and are bothered by faith being the answer. It's tough for them so they lash out at those who know the truth because of their own insecurity. They will have this issue until they can put their pride aside and let the Holy Spirit guide them.

      1. Bovine Currency profile image59
        Bovine Currencyposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        lol

    50. 0
      Brenda Durhamposted 6 years ago

      Drat!   I think I've been spelling "atheist" wrong...

    51. elayne001 profile image45
      elayne001posted 6 years ago

      IMO, I think they asked you to pray because of what they know you believe. You can still let them hear that in your prayer. Just pray as you believe, and it probably will give them some comfort just in case you might be right about everything. They must have been impressed to ask you to pray knowing you are a believer even though they are not. It is an opportunity for you. Go with it.

    52. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      The funeral went as well as one could go I suppose. Thank you all for your oppinions about the subject. My wife and I were able to talk to our frinds for hours about their son and who he was the night before the funeral. All in all it was very sad and I hope I never have to do that again.

      Sooner.

    53. 59
      (Q)posted 6 years ago

      Sooner. My condolences.

      Just a quick question, did you ask your friend the same question you asked here?

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Good question. Yes I did. However going into depth may cause another outbreak of personal attacks and/or really tick me off(some have no respect). So I will leave it at that, yes I did.

        1. 59
          (Q)posted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Good, I hope you found the answer you were looking for.

          1. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            ahh, I feel I have more questions about myself than anything. I'm glad I could support my friends never the less. Thank you for your kind words.

    54. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      Update, my friends are attending church with us this weekend. Now the long process of healing can begin.

      1. Shadesbreath profile image90
        Shadesbreathposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Wow, so you actually used the opportunity of their total emotional desolation at the loss of their son as an opportunity to "guide" them to the church, a feat you could not do before they were struck such a tremendous blow, when they were not totally weak and vulnerable.  Just, f-ing wow.

        1. earnestshub profile image88
          earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          A bit like buying your daughter the car you want when she needs a house! Nothing matches religion for blind narcissism! It is in the book!

          1. Shadesbreath profile image90
            Shadesbreathposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            More like the guy who calls himself a friend of your daughter and who is "there for her" one night after she breaks up with her boyfriend, "to listen and just be there" and, while she's vulnerable and trusting, ends up doing her... because "it just happened."

            1. earnestshub profile image88
              earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              A better analogy! smile

        2. 0
          SirDentposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          What I truly do not understand is how when someone is offered a hand up, someone finds a way to make it look evil. What is wrong with you? Maybe the next time it will be you in need. Nobody has a promise of tomorrow. What will you do when there is no one to help you through it?

    55. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      So all of your prayers and suggestions did help. thank you all.

    56. Len Cannon profile image88
      Len Cannonposted 6 years ago

      It is incredibly depressing when a funeral does not follow the wants and beliefs of the person it is meant to be honoring.  However, his family is asking you for a favor.  They hurt. You think you understand, but you don't.  Give a simple, inoffensive prayer and say some kind words about the deceased and keep your mouth shut. Let people feel a little bit of hope when they're hurting.

    57. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      wich by the way sounds surprisingly similar to Dawkins belief system; One has a large impact on the way many act, not very cooth.

    58. aware profile image70
      awareposted 6 years ago

      hi tantrum  heres a ? if i asked you to pray at my funeral would you?

      1. tantrum profile image60
        tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I wouldn't know how, but I will say beautiful words about you. big_smile

        1. sooner than later profile image62
          sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          I wish I found it that easy.

          1. tantrum profile image60
            tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            but it's very easy! Become an Atheist. lol

            1. sooner than later profile image62
              sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              Saying beautiful words was very difficult because I was choked up. I knew the young man too well

              1. tantrum profile image60
                tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                Or you were choked up ,because,from your point of view he would rot in Hell forever ?

                1. sooner than later profile image62
                  sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                  I said I knew him very well. I question your ability to reason. I know we share nothing in common, but does that mean you have to be ice cold 24/7?

                  1. tantrum profile image60
                    tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                    I'm not iced cold
                    You said you didn't know what do do about it, because this young man was a non believer, and that you couldn't give comfort when you believe he was  not going to Heaven because of this.

                    1. sooner than later profile image62
                      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                      I asked for advice about the funeral. I think if you read all of your comments in this thread and many other in which you follow me, you will find that maybe you have been somewhat cold. It is time to burry the hatchet with you or at least agree to be more respectful. I will start.

    59. aware profile image70
      awareposted 6 years ago

      very cool answer  hugs

      1. tantrum profile image60
        tantrumposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        hugs !!! big_smile

    60. tantrum profile image60
      tantrumposted 6 years ago

      cool
      But that doesn't mean I'm not going to debate with you.
      I know I'm very sarcastic ,or so they say.
      I hope you won't see disrespect where's  there is none.
      Let's try not to dramatize.
      this is only a forum

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I do not mind some debate and I don't need a big hug with people throwing flowers all about. It is nice to move in a respectful path.

    61. Actioncameron profile image61
      Actioncameronposted 6 years ago

      So sooner how did it go... You must agree that funerals and ceremonies for the dead are actually for the living. To give comfort to the grieving and to seek closure.
      I believe that every joy, every sorrow, every good, every evil belongs to all of us. All are responsible for all. All are dependent upon all. Humanity is one.
      The meek shall inherit the earth. Understand this and you will find them by what is in their hearts.
      Remember that all of God is in everything. The whole of creation is the matter of God. Nothing is seperate from God, nor can ever be. Your sense of superiority because you say you have a faith is an illusion. You are on a journey of discovery and you are asked to go forth in Love. Love is not judgemental.
      The great error of the present is the way our religions externalize Christ. Use His name like a battering ram to get other souls into submission. You are always calling on Christ to fix things and do for you what you think you need done. But you had better call on your own heart, for it is in your own heart that His mansion is founded.

      1. sooner than later profile image62
        sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        I truly feel that there are conditions to Gods love. I do understand your point, but don't believe that there is an understanding nor seeking of Gods will by many people. I don't feel more important than anyone and many times contemplate my very own salvation. The bible uses the word "if" over 120 times in the context of conditional behaviour. For example "if you love Me you will keep my commandments". He does love us all and is incapable of anything less than pure love, but who are the "meek"? Mockers are not meek, wicked are not meek and neither are those willing to speak against their Lord.

        1. Actioncameron profile image61
          Actioncameronposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          This would be where we part paths on God. You see it is a finished work that He did. A perfect work and so you cannot and are even clearly told that there is not one thing you can add to His work to change the outcome. Your concern over your salvation is a giant waste of your energy. If you but believe....then leave all the conditional stuff out because it matters not one molecule. It is simply human navel gazing....

          Go forward in Love and leave off the obsessing....

          1. sooner than later profile image62
            sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            I see. So anything we do from this point forward is already excused? New Test has most of those conditions. We do part. Thanks for your input.

            1. Actioncameron profile image61
              Actioncameronposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              I can hear that you have some control issues. Your posted question which has garnered many responses is coming from a typical tasteless Christain perspective. The Christ in Unity Club is alive and well in your callous comments about this unfortunate situation his parents find themselves in. That is why I first asked so how did your experience go? You failed to address that and launched into your faith perspective. 

              In my years on this planet I have been working on living in the present. I'm getting the hang of it better these last 20 years or so. It is only in the present where you will find a real peace. Children are wonderful at living in the present. They give off this marvellous joy... so natural.

              Sooner you do not get to live in the future while you are here with us in the present.

              And even less do you get to have any say or the nasty word judgement over others when it pertains to their future.

              Perhaps some one thing I have shared with you today will linger on in your head or heart. So far it sounds like all I have managed to do is irk you and rub your religious bone.

              About that I am humbly sorry. I do tend to be direct. There was no insult intended. Just sharing...

              1. sooner than later profile image62
                sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                No I do appreciate your input. I find alot of what I would call new age, non scriptural, feel good religions somewhat watered down. I posted how the funeral went a few pages back or so. I do sense an under tone from your first two posts but maybe my compass is off.

                1. Actioncameron profile image61
                  Actioncameronposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                  Sooner I am a born again believer from the year 1980. I came in personal touch with Him while in Zurich. It was a real life changer...but I have seen too much in too many churches full of damaged people and He has taken me on quite a journey. What I share comes from me and my personal experience not a book or someone's opinion but direct from my life journey. He's the captain and I'm the first mate. I have done big listening nad much soul searching to come to my opinions. I truly do not want to be a judgemental person. I am called to pray with all my heart soul and mind and I've accepted the call. I am religious about brushing my teeth and I have taken Him to heart that it is man who brought religion to His time here with us for their own purpose not His.

                  I do love the Christ based debate but I also respect what others believe and would never turn away a chance to pray for a family in pain of loss. I don't think He would either.

                  1. sooner than later profile image62
                    sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                    I agree. I do thank you for this and I embrace you as a brother. I am sorry I came off harshly, I have had some interesting and disrespectful posts in here. Peace to you and thanks again.

    62. Alessia Amnesia profile image60
      Alessia Amnesiaposted 6 years ago

      Christians are always offering to pray for me and I'm not Christian so where is your problem with praying for a dead friend's son's soul?

    63. sooner than later profile image62
      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago

      Shades-

      you are very assumptive again. Please stop reading between the lines. If I had to go back and describe my friendship in defense of myself, I would be here all night with you. That being said, you are way off base on your assumptions.

      1. Shadesbreath profile image90
        Shadesbreathposted 6 years ago in reply to this



        What am I assuming? 

        1. The family was athiest before the funeral, you said that yourself.

        2. You have made a big public to-do about your angst-ridden involvement in the funeral and their dead kid and your great personal struggle with how to give condolence to a friend without telling him his son was f-ed for all eternity for his god-rebuking ways. (Most of that you said, the rest we can see plainly by the existence of this forum.)

        3. You have spoken with them and shared YOUR concerns during this, the time of THEIR unfathomably humongous grief, you said that yourself.

        4. The family is now going to church "so the healing process can begin," you said that yourself.

        Please show me which part of all the things you have written that I recount here constitutes me "reading between the lines."

        1. Mark Knowles profile image61
          Mark Knowlesposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Tell you what - you wouldn't catch me going to church if I knew the big fella was burning my kid in a lake of fire for all eternity.

          Takes all sorts, I suppose -  Imaginary or other wise. wink

          1. greeneyesH1982 profile image60
            greeneyesH1982posted 6 years ago in reply to this

            very sorry to hear for your loss.... if I was you I would look for my answer in the bible and do a lot of praying about it... do you think JESUS himself would refrane from prayer just because the family were atheists if he were to attend a funeral? I must note that I cant believe how purely heartless some have been on here.. this forum is a post about the death of someone... very sad and yet people want to slander and make rude remarks.. where is the good in that?? i thought these people were good people and yet i see them in here throwing around whatever they think again and this shows their true colors... kind people do not act in a manner especially in the passing of another.. when someone comes for advice it is best to give it and not try to throw in your own personal attacks wherever u see an opportunity... set aside your thoughts have a heart and show some love... if u feel you cant do that because you are too stubborn or feel your way is right then that is exactly why God is needed he SHOWS how one can do these things... this is the big difference between man and God... but then again I am delusional right? making sense to you consists of name calling slandering making those feel bad just because it feeds your own selfish ways and views... u cant even bring yourself to have some compassion... that is insanity and utterly disgusting... once again very sorry for your loss I hope things get better for you.. I am not completely sure as to why his father is asking for you to pray at the funeral but if he is asking YOU to do this then why would it be offensive if you did something he asked you to do? dont listen to these people in this forum they are not HIM.. they dont know how he is feeling or what he is going through... once again if hes asking for a favor i would do what he is asking.. but I would talk to him about it first and ask him what exactly it is he wants you to pray about.... he is hurting no doubt so comfort him and do the best you can.. cant go wrong there God sees the hearts intentions.. dont let the others get to you or get you down... that is exactly their intent is... just ignore them dont respond and focus on this part of your life for now and how you can help and do the best you can... remember sometimes we are being tested and I think that is where some of them come from so giving into their harsh thoughts and words only feeds them... a fire cant burn without air or stuff to do burn so stop talking with them and stop feeding them..... GOD BLESS you

            1. sooner than later profile image62
              sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              thank you. God bless you as well. the funeral was a couple of weeks ago now and it did go pretty well. There was a large group there for support and some people in here gave me some really nice advice that helped me with the eulogy and prayer. I admit that I was taken back by the lack of disrespect. I do have people who do not agree with me, but the question was "how low will they go?". I was shockingly surprised. peace to you. Sooner.

              1. greeneyesH1982 profile image60
                greeneyesH1982posted 6 years ago in reply to this

                glad to hear it went well.... I am sure of it that there will be lessons to learn in life indeed smile sometimes these things in life bring even the ones who seem far off even closer.. wish the best of luck to you on your journey and with your friend my best wishes to you on this new year smile

                1. sooner than later profile image62
                  sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                  Thanks again for your kind words. God has big plans for you, I can tell. Sooner.

                  1. greeneyesH1982 profile image60
                    greeneyesH1982posted 6 years ago in reply to this

                    thank you, this I have known for some time now.. BUT the question now is when? LOL seein how i been twiddlin my thumbs just a waitin patiently lol but you know how it goes its in his time in his way because he knows what is best for us.. I m sure if he revealed it to me now I would most certainly not quite know what to do with it yet? lol all in all I am sure if i keep my faith it will be a great reward.. I too have been tested by my family and among other things... But i think I did well with that my faith is still the same smile I still look to him so I feel he is pleased... gotta be stronger then the world itself and the words tossed our way.. really builds us up for him and his plans for us after all we are standing up against the ones we cannot see but definately can FEEL it.smile

                    1. sooner than later profile image62
                      sooner than laterposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                      I understand. Well, I didn't become a Christian until later in my life. I am 53 now- but His message was very strong to me(even though I allow my feathers to get ruffled time and again). Point is, I sometimes feel that I wish I was in a little sooner. But, would I have been ready? I don't know. Looking back its all very beautiful to me. I spent many years in the archeology field, I became a history major over that time- and it seems that all the pieces fit so much better, both scripturally and on a personal level. Now I'm trying to work out the communist part of Jesus. He was all about wealth distribution and giving. It grinds the American way and it grinds my nature. For one thing I feel the states have a laziness problem, for two I feel other people need help more. So, thats why my wife and I headed to Panama and Costa Rica. We will continue our ministries there and I feel better about helping those who actually need it. Maybe you would want to teach english there some day. We do it for free and use the bible as a tool. You could bunk in a tico(farm house)for a while. Sooner.

     
    working