According to the CBS affiliate in Dallas/Fort Worth, a Texas atheist group decided to initiate what it called "outreach" to a number of Christian pastors in North Texas on the occasion of Good Friday.
"God is dead. Have a Good Friday"
According to the affiliate, the group calling itself the "Dallas-Fort Worth Coalition of Reason" left the following message in the mailboxes of 50 church leaders. The message was: "God is dead. Have a Good Friday." The group's coordinator, Zachary Moore, called it "outreach to Christians."
The Dallas-Fort Worth Coalition of Reason
According to the organization's Google Plus page, the Dallas-Fort Worth Coalition of Reason "is a group of local organizations joined together to increase the growth, visibility and acceptance of all atheists throughout the Metroplex. While all of these organizations share common ground, each has its own particular emphasis and atmosphere. Some are focused on scientific inquiry and education; others are focused on ethics and community. Still others seek to create environments of rationality where people can socialize in climates of tolerance and support. All organizations are committed to promoting wider acceptance of a more rational and realistic view of the universe and the humans who live in it."
Why such a message on Good Friday
Good Friday, as About.com points out, is the Friday before Easter Sunday when, according to Christian tradition, Jesus Christ suffered and died by crucifixion. Believing Christians commemorate the occasion with prayer and fasting. The day is considered a solemn occasion, leading up to Easter Sunday when, according to Christian beliefs, Jesus Christ rose from the dead. As Jesus Christ is considered the Son of God, the Dallas-Fort Worth Coalition of Reason is clearly making an attempt at humor, imparting the message first suggested by the philosopher Frederick Nietzsche that "God is dead" on the occasion in which God was killed.
Reaction to the atheist message
According to the CBS affiliate, the reaction to the atheist message was pretty much muted among the Christian pastors who were interviewed. Robert Jeffress, Senior Pastor of First Baptist Dallas, for example, suggested that the existence of Jesus Christ has more historical evidence than that of Julius Caesar. He went on to state that the resurrection of Jesus Christ is "one of the most verifiable acts in human history." Other people interviewed for the story took a dim view of the atheists' tactics, one person terming it "inconsiderate."
Texas resident Mark Whittington writes about state issues for the Yahoo! Contributor Network.
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