Daddy, Daughter Discuss God (Again); More Cuteness Ensues
By Wendy Thomas Russell | May 13, 2013
- My husband and 7-year-old daughter had another totally awesome conversation about God a few days ago. They used to do that from time to time, but it’s been a while since the subject has come up in much detail. I sure love it when it does. The talks are always fun, insightful, thought-provoking and, frankly, cute as hell. They also present Charlie with golden opportunities to teach Maxine about honesty, diversity and the importance of kindness. Anyway, this one’s particularly good, so I wanted to share: Maxine: Where do you think God is? Like, which house or school… [...] Read more – ‘Daddy, Daughter Discuss God (Again); More Cuteness Ensues’.
Kids Leaving Parents’ Religion Certainly Gets People Talking
By Wendy Thomas Russell | March 7, 2013
- I’m hella busy today, but wanted to link to a few recent news posts about children leaving the faiths into which they were born. The first is informative, the second is instructive, and the third — well, the third is just trash. But watch it for the comedic value. Study: Religious Parents’ Divorce May Cause Children to Leave the Church The Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion released a study Tuesday finding that children who have two religious parents are twice as likely to lose that religion if the parents divorce. The journal does [...] Read more – ‘Kids Leaving Parents’ Religion Certainly Gets People Talking’.
Research Shows Baby Jesus Crazy Popular
By Wendy Thomas Russell | November 26, 2012
- For the last few weeks, I’ve been prepping for the first edition of Relax, It’s Just God’s Shopping Guide, which, if all goes according to plan, will appear here on Thursday — just in time for the Christian and Jewish month of giving. (See how I timed that? Aren’t I clever?) The guide will give reviews and buying information about my favorite “props” — including toys, books, movies and music — all of which are intended to help parents talk to kids about religion without confusing them, scaring them or boring them to tears. Feel free to let [...] Read more – ‘Research Shows Baby Jesus Crazy Popular’.
75 Reasons to Share the Bible with Kids (Even if You Don’t Believe Any of It)
By Wendy Thomas Russell | November 19, 2012
- If we want our children to be religiously literate — and who among us doesn’t, honestly? — then it behooves us to talk about the Bible in respectful terms, even if we don’t think much of it is true. When parents call the Bible “a book of fairy tales” (direct quote from my survey for nonreligious parents), it makes the whole thing seem silly and unimportant. And not just unimportant in a religious way, but unimportant in a universal way. I grew up with parents who talked about William Shakespeare like he was THE MAN (with [...] Read more – ‘75 Reasons to Share the Bible with Kids (Even if You Don’t Believe Any of It)’.
Taking the ‘Myth’ out of the Bible
By Wendy Thomas Russell | November 15, 2012
- Oh, Bible. You do confound us so. You are so very dense, complicated and repetitive, not to mention confusing, contradictory, outrageous and far too long-winded to actually read. And yet you are so wise, textured and powerful. You are surprising and exciting and flush with cultural references. In fact, you make it almost impossible for any of us to understand who we are as a civilization without at least getting your Cliffs Notes. As author E.D. Hirsch Jr. tells children in The First Dictionary of Cultural Literacy: The Bible is by far the best-known book [...] Read more – ‘Taking the ‘Myth’ out of the Bible’.
‘The God Talk’ Makes Prime Time
By Wendy Thomas Russell | October 4, 2012
- Any Parenthood watchers out there? A couple of weeks ago, the NBC series aired an episode involving a nonreligious couple who discovers their young son praying at his bedside, which leads them to confront the issue for the first time — not only with their son, but also with Grandma (who has, of course, inspired the prayer) and with each other. The story arc rings very true, and I was thrilled to see the discussion come up on Prime Time. If you’re interested, you can stream the episode on Netflix. The story line starts in [...] Read more – ‘‘The God Talk’ Makes Prime Time’.
Do You Share Negative Views about Religion with Your Kids?
By Wendy Thomas Russell | July 30, 2012
- Fifty-seven percent of the nonreligious parents I surveyed earlier this year said they viewed religion “negatively, with exceptions,” while another 21 percent said they viewed it “both positively and negatively,” depending on the specific religion. This shouldn’t be all that surprising. Hell, even religious people have issues with religion. I bring it up, though, because I wonder how many parents are (unintentionally or intentionally) passing on these negative views to their children. I honestly don’t know, and because I’m a moron*, I didn’t think to ask that specific question in the survey. It’s very possible that, in [...] Read more – ‘Do You Share Negative Views about Religion with Your Kids?’.
Religious Charm Bracelet, Anyone?… Anyone?
By Wendy Thomas Russell | July 19, 2012
- Okay, I suspect you guys are going to make fun of me a little bit for this, but, hey, what the hell. So, let me preface this by saying that, growing up, my mother had a charm bracelet she wore on special occasions. I was FASCINATED by this bracelet, which strung together all kinds of little golden goodies symbolizing some of my mom’s greatest memories. There was a child’s ring, a graduation cap, a locket. But my favorite charm was a little money box containing the tiniest folded-up dollar bill I’d ever seen in my [...] Read more – ‘Religious Charm Bracelet, Anyone?… Anyone?’.
On Tom, Katie and Interfaith Families
By Wendy Thomas Russell | July 9, 2012
- To answer your first two questions: Yes, I’m going there; and, no, I’m not above it. Now, back to TomKat. If media reports are to be believed — and let’s say they are for the sake of this conversation, shall we? — actors Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes have split up based, in part, on a dispute over the religious upbringing of their 6-year-old daughter, Suri. In case you are reading this from under a rock somewhere, Cruise is the highest-profile Scientologist in the history of Scientology, and Holmes — well, she ain’t. (I’ve read she [...] Read more – ‘On Tom, Katie and Interfaith Families’.
What Happens When You Don’t Tell Your Kid About Religion? Only Really Terrible Things, That’s All.
By Wendy Thomas Russell | April 5, 2012
- Let’s say you’re a secular parent who doesn’t feel the need to talk about religion with your kid. Maybe you don’t like religion, or understand it, or even care about it very much. Maybe you tried once to broach the subject with your kid, and it was pretty awkward and confusing and you were sure you screwed stuff up. Maybe you decided, after careful consideration, to table the whole thing for another time. And by “another time,” you mean in, like, 20 years. “So what?” you ask. “She’ll get the information she needs eventually, right? And [...] Read more – ‘What Happens When You Don’t Tell Your Kid About Religion? Only Really Terrible Things, That’s All.’.