It’s time for Secular Sunday, the weekly newsletter of Atheist Ireland.
In this issue:
- Upcoming Events
- Yesterday, Atheist Ireland held its fourth Annual General Meeting. This meeting discussed our activities since our last AGM (as detailed in the agenda), and our plans for the coming year (detailed here). Here’s some video of Michael Nugent and Jane Donnelly on the political lobbying and submissions of the last year. A lot of additional ideas were raised and it was decided to hold a strategy workshop in two weeks time (details below in Upcoming Events section).
- The Central Statistics Office has released its latest report from the 2011 Census: Religion, Ethnicity and Irish Travellers – Ethnic and cultural background in Ireland. Among other things, this highlights the increasing number of non-religious people in Ireland, and the subject has been discussed in various media. We’ll have a full analysis of the census figures and other statistics from recent relevant surveys soon. In the meantime, if you feel like some data-mining and number-crunching, there’s undoubtedly a lot of interesting information lurking in the statistics. If you find anything of note, let us know.
- Last week’s Beyond Belief on RTÉ featured a discussion about blasphemy laws. Michael Nugent and comedian Abie Philbin Bowman were on the panel arguing against these laws. If you missed it when it was broadcast, you can watch it online on the RTÉ Player (or on TV depending on your provider).
- Monday 22 October, 8:30 pm, McSwiggans Bar and Restaurant, Woodquay, Galway (map)
Galway Skeptics in the Pub #43. More science and skepticism. Facebook event page
- Monday 22 October, 10:00 pm, More4, TV
Part 2 of Richard Dawkins’ three-part series Sex, Death and the Meaning of Life. This episode is about death. If you missed part 1, you can watch it on 4OD
- Saturday 27 October, 3:45 pm, Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin 8 (map)
“Skeptics go walkabout.” Dublin Skeptics in the Pub and Ingenious Ireland are teaming up for “a bloody, disease ridden tour of the medical history of Dublin”. Tickets are about €12.50 and limited to a maximum of 24 people. To be followed by drinks in the Lord Edward at around 6:00 pm. Facebook event page
- Sunday 28 October, 12:00 noon, Quay Co-op, Cork (map)
Cork Humanists’ First Birthday Celebration. There will be speeches and cake. Facebook event page
Remember, the clocks go back that morning so don’t turn up an hour early!
- Sunday 4 November, 4:00 pm, Buswell’s Hotel, Dublin 2 (map)
The monthly meeting of the Humanist Association of Ireland. All are welcome. This is to be followed by their AGM (for members only).
- Saturday 10 November, 2:00 pm, Buswell’s Hotel, Dublin 2 (map)
Atheist Ireland strategy workshop. We will be meeting to discuss some of the ideas that came up at our AGM, particularly ways of increasing our membership base, spreading information about our activities and goals, and making our organisation more inclusive. If you feel you can contribute to this in any way, come along.
- Apparently religion can call a halt to normal school activity, with full support from the staff, and get special funding for a religious gathering. That being bad enough, it was also made a compulsory gathering. – Nathan Young, a student at Borrisokane Community College stands up against the compulsory religious service that took place in the school, and the principal who insisted he attend. An interview with Nathan appears in today’s Sunday Times (article is behind a paywall). There’s a report of the interview on Irish Central.
- I am not just a ‘Christian’ in the generic sense of the word but I am one of those ‘evangelical, born-again, Bible believing’ Christians. - Christianity’s Worst Enemy. Geoff’s Shorts has a guest post from Roger Parrow, a Christian preacher.
- Life is not something we choose. It was given to us by our parents for various reasons of their own. If it becomes unbearable and there is no way to improve it, then ending it makes sense for some people. If there is a right to life, there must be a right to death at a time of one’s choosing. – Máirín de Burca has a guest post on Michael Nugent’s blog. Both Máirín and Michael are founder members of Right to Die Ireland.
- While it was extremely rare, there were a small number of admitted ‘atheists’ and ‘agnostics’ in Dublin in 1911. As far as I can work out, a grand total of 32 (8 Atheists and 24 Agnostics). - Come Here to Me on the number of atheists and agnostics in Dublin a century ago. There’s also a follow-up with numbers from the 1901 census.
Till next time,
Editor, Secular Sunday