Stand-up comedians Sanderson Jones and Pippa Evans are set to open the UK’s first atheist church tomorrow. The Sunday Assembly, as it will be named, will hold wedding ceremonies, funerals and will meet regularly on the first Sunday of every month.
Jones and Evans say the inspiration for the church came when the pair realized they liked many aspects of religion, but couldn’t take part because they didn’t believe in a god. Jones called the coming project “part atheist church and part foot-stomping show” and said the regular service will include speakers on different themes as well as a house band.
“We thought it would be a shame not to enjoy the good stuff about religion, like the sense of community, just because of a theological disagreement,” he said.
The first service will be about helping people stick to their New Year’s resolutions. Jones added: “We all should be ludicrously excited every single moment to be alive in one of the best countries in the world. If the church becomes a useful place for others, that would be a good thing. We just want people to feel encouraged and excited when they leave.”
The announcement of Jones and Evans’ church is timely, as well, as a census last week revealed that one in three residents of the UK are atheists.
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