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CONVERSION/ From Raving Atheist to Raving Theist

On the occasion of the conversion of atheist blogger Leah Libresco, ilsussidiario.net interviewed the author of the blog The Raving Atheist, who converted to Catholicism in 2008.

(Infophoto) (Infophoto)

The author of the blog The Raving Atheist, a militant atheist for years and cited in the film “The God that wasn’t there” by Brian Flemming, tells ilsussidiario.net the story of his conversion to Christians. The American lawyer who conceals himself behind a pseudonym, decided to change the name of his site to The Raving Theist. The subtitle of the blog reads “Dedicated to Jesus Christ, now and forever”.

Were you always an atheist, from your childhood?

On the contrary, my grandfather, his father, and many of my ancestors on my mother's side of the family were Christian ministers. I received religious training from an early age in a church which was right next to my parents' house, and my mother sang in the church choir for nearly 50 years. We prayed at every meal. So my interest in religion was the natural outcome of my upbringing. 

Then what happened?

However, I grew up in New York in the 1960s when many Americans were questioning authority and religion. The largest national publication, Time Magazine, declared on its cover in 1966 that "God is Dead." My best friend when I was about ten years old was an atheist, and his views influenced mine. As a teen I went to the library and read Bertrand Russell's "Why I am Not a Christian," which also changes my attitude toward religion. Additionally, my father's family consisted largely of atheist or agnostic socialists and communists. While they did not discuss those views much in front of the children, I was aware of them generally.

Your atheism was still a form of interest in religion, which is not how it is for most people…

You said that many people do not have a great interest in religion. While I think there are more atheists in America today than when I was growing up, many peoples' whole lives are still based around their church and their faith. In Europe I understand the situation may be very different. 

Your first doubts about atheism came about when facing the question of abortion. Why?

Pro-choice supporters consistently refuse to discuss the basic, scientific fact that a fetus is an unborn human being. Instead, they usually make one or more of the following flawed, non-scientific arguments. First, they argue that the fetus is whatever the mother thinks it is: if she thinks it's a baby, then it's a baby; if she thinks it's a clump of cells, then it's a clump of cells. Obviously, this argument is unscientific because the true nature of the fetus does not change depending on what anyone thinks about it.

And then?