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Atheist Groups Are Planning 'Mass Resignation' of Mormons at LDS General Conference

Posted by on Apr. 4, 2014 at 6:09 PM
  • 86 Replies

  • Mormon
    Mormons gathered at the Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah for the April 2011 General Conference for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

By Michael Gryboski, Christian Post Reporter
April 3, 2014|4:32 pm

A pair of atheist organizations are planning to host a mass resignation of Mormons from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints during its general conference.

The national organization American Atheists and its local affiliate Atheists of Utah intend to hold the resignation event during the LDS church's general conference this weekend.

Dave Muscato, public relations director with Americans Atheists, told The Christian Post that while similar events have occurred in the past, this year's event "is the first mass resignation with which American Atheists has been involved at the national level."

"American Atheists President David Silverman is traveling to Utah to deliver a speech and welcome the newly freed atheists to the atheist community and personally invite the participants to our 2014 national convention," said Muscato.

Muscato also told CP that "American Atheists will offer a congratulatory discount to the 2014 national convention to everyone at the event, and a free one-year American Atheists memberships as well."

"The 2012 event was hosted locally with no formal advertising and without the benefit of support from American Atheists at the national level," said Muscato. This year, however, the atheists "will be promoting the exodus with local advertisements and online through social media too."

Scheduled to convene at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, the 184th Annual General Conference of the Church will take place on Saturday and Sunday.

General Conferences in the LDS church are held semi-annually during the first weekends of April and October and brings tens of thousands of Mormons to Salt Lake City from across the world.

This year's conference is expected to bring in more than 100,000 Mormons and millions of viewers via television and online sources.

Dan Ellis, president of Atheists of Utah, told CP that "Atheists of Utah has helped promote two previous mass resignation events, but neither of the previous events coincided with LDS General Conference."

Ellis added that he expects at least 100 people to attend the mass resignation event. He also believes that, as time progresses, the resignation movement will definitely grow.

"I anticipate more than 100 people actually attending the event in person, and have received word from approximately 50 other people who are unable to attend in person, but who will be submitting their resignation on the same day to have at least some small part in this event," said Ellis.

"The Internet Age has provided anyone the ability to research just about everything they could ever care to know about the LDS church and its track record of revisionist tinkering of its own doctrine and purported beliefs."

Lyman Kirkland, spokesman for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, told CP that he hopes the atheists' activism doesn't distract from the ultimate message of the general conference.

"The real message of general conference is to follow Jesus Christ, and we hope that others don't use this religious gathering as a platform for activism," said Kirkland.

Regarding the trend of membership and resignation, Kirkland told CP that every April the LDS church reports its membership numbers at general conference.

According to church reports, from 2011 to 2012 total membership in the LDS church went from 14,441,346 to 14,782,473. For both years' statistics, baptized converts outnumbered child of record by more than two fold.

"There is a huge underground community of atheists still in the closet who need us, to see that they are not alone and that it's OK to come out and join us," Muscato added.

"We invite those who do not believe to come to our convention and see for themselves that leaving the LDS church doesn't simply make you an ex-Mormon. You don't have to continue to base your identity in Mormonism if you don't believe in it anymore."

by on Apr. 4, 2014 at 6:09 PM
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by Silver Member on Apr. 4, 2014 at 6:15 PM
2 moms liked this

One would think telling God you no longer are part of a religion would do it.

Some gave all and all gave some. Remember your rights as an American were earned with the blood of others. Don't waste them and please do your duty as a citizen and vote intelligently in every election.

by Silver Member on Apr. 4, 2014 at 6:55 PM
by Platinum Member on Apr. 4, 2014 at 7:01 PM
9 moms liked this
It seems to me; the modern Atheists motto is, "We know there is no God, because we hate Him so much."
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by Obama licker on Apr. 4, 2014 at 7:02 PM
3 moms liked this

I don't see a problem as long as it isn't disrespectful nor deliberately distracting. I've seen plenty of proselytizing at all sorts of events.

Shrugs. I'm guessing they won't have a lot of success.

by on Apr. 4, 2014 at 7:04 PM


Quoting Donna6503: It seems to me; the modern Atheists motto is, "We know there is no God, because we hate Him so much."

by on Apr. 4, 2014 at 7:05 PM
2 moms liked this

Just as distasteful as the Westborough protests.

by KK on Apr. 4, 2014 at 7:06 PM
15 moms liked this

For a group that wants the right to just live in peace without having "God shoved down their throat" a lot of these folks spend an awful lot of time obsessing over Him.  

by Member on Apr. 4, 2014 at 7:17 PM
10 moms liked this

I think it's great they are offering support and community for those that wish to leave the church. believe me, it's pretty scary at first, letting go of every belief you have had your whole life and discovering that all those beliefs are false. I wish I had known more Atheists when I finally let go of religion. 

by Silver Member on Apr. 4, 2014 at 7:23 PM
5 moms liked this
It is frightening, religion; People believing that they communicate with something omnipotent and invisible. People believing that this life is only a test to get into a nice life after death. People believing that after their death they will live happily forever with a being that sanctions eternal torture for others if they do not believe in his existence. These things are truly scary. I am glad that there really is nothing supernatural in existence and I really feel freaked out when I think that in line at the supermarket, or at the symphony, or at my work, that I could be right next to someone who feels I should be tortured for all eternity for not believing in their diety.

I do wish religion and belief in the existence of supernatural entities could be erased from humanity and we could all live for today knowing it is all we have and that all we have is each other. Life would be so much more precious and happy for all.
by Ruby Member on Apr. 4, 2014 at 7:35 PM
8 moms liked this
I'm mostly for live and let live, and don't really care to bug others or make a spectacle of something, but the LDS church is hard to leave and it might be nice for those contemplating it to know there is a support team for them.
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