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Religion in a Secular Society: The Divided States of America


Religion has been the social backbone of human civilization for thousands of years.  It helps explain the unexplainable, gives hope to the hopeless, and its places of worship have been the common spaces whose members get to know each other, practice common traditions, build trust, and help each other in an enormous and frightening world.  But what happens when the world gets smaller, and people of different faiths, or no faith at all, live together - and in a democracy none the less? Next week we'll discuss the influence faith-based organizations have on secular society. As these groups step in to provide key public services, what are the implications for the 60% of San Franciscans who do not identify as religious? Are non-believers being left in the cold? 

Michael Pappas:  Executive Director of the San Francisco Interfaith Council.  The San Francisco Interfaith Council’s mission is to Serve the Community, bring people together to build understanding, and to celebrate our diverse faiths and spiritual traditions.

Larry Hicok:  Founder of the Atheist Advocates of San Francisco, and the California State Director of American Atheists and a prime organizer of lasy year's Regional Atheist Meeting in Oakland, celebrating the many ends of the World that never happened.

Dr. John Nelson - Professor and Chair of the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of San Francisco.  He specializes in Asian Religions, the Anthropology of Religion and Religion and Globalization.