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Spartanburg Soup Kitchen turns away atheist volunteers

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posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 09:54 PM

Spartanburg SC
A group of Upstate atheists plans to hand out care packages downtown this weekend after the Spartanburg Soup Kitchen wouldn't let them volunteer.

On Saturday, about 10 people are expected to gather across from the soup kitchen and hand out care packages to the homeless. The 300 packages contain socks, gloves, toothpaste, toothbrushes, combs, soap, rain ponchos, snacks, shaving razors, antiseptic wipes, deodorants, tissues and gum.

"I hope we can provide a package for everyone who needs one," said Eve Brannon, president of Upstate Atheists, a group started in 2011 that includes about 200 members. "Whatever we have left, we will donate to a homeless shelter in the Upstate."

Brannon, 25, said they decided to hand out care packages to the homeless after being told they could not volunteer at the Spartanburg Soup Kitchen.

"I told them we wouldn't wear our T-shirts. We wouldn't tell anyone who we are with. We just want to help out," Brannon said. "And they told us that we were not allowed."

This is messed up. People wanting to volunteer and help out but are turned away because they have a different opinion about the origins of the universe. It doesn’t really surprise me because I have seen and have been subject to treatment like this before simply because I do not believe. Do you think those in need care if the people helping them believe in god or not? Wasn’t the Pope just talking about that kind of behavior? BTW even though I do not believe in deity’s I do like this Pope.

Please read the link but I will share some of the Ministry’s words.

"This is a ministry to serve God" she said. "We stand on the principles of God. Do they (atheists) think that our guests are so ignorant that they don't know what an atheist is? Why are they targeting us? They don't give any money. I wouldn't want their money."

Actually it sounds like they are pissed about not getting money. Maybe that is a big issue to them otherwise why bring it up. Do they think atheism is contagious?

Have seen it in these very threads where people have tried to say Atheists are incapable of being charitable without god. Maybe they want to keep perpetrating that lie by trying to keep us from such things.

I have volunteered for many charity’s, cleanups, cut and delivered wood to homes during the winter and at the time those that ran such things were affiliated with the church. I was just unwilling to speak about my beliefs for fear of ridicule but I had thought in this day we would be past such things. I guess not. This is why many Atheists have started their own groups because we are often subjects of animosity.

At the end of the article the representative of the ministry said the atheists can set up across the street to donate and handout things “but they better not come across the street”. Doesn’t sound very Christ like.

posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 09:58 PM
I have to ask..Why did it take being turned away as food line volunteers to give something really meaningful to help the homeless? Why make it a competition with the Faith based soup kitchen at all?

If the welfare of the Homeless is the goal, they should make a regular thing of it for it's own sake on this giveaway. They can each do a lot of good without interfering with each other, IMO. Each offering something different, but helping the ones who really need it.

posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 10:04 PM
reply to post by Wrabbit2000

They were not wanting to compete they were trying to help out working with them but were denied based on their non religion.
This is on page 2 of the source I posted.

"We can all work together to achieve something positive regardless of religion or lack thereof," she said. "We've raised money for March of Dimes, worked with the Generous Garden Project, done community park clean ups, adopted a highway, and sponsored local foster children for Christmas."

After being denied they decided they still wanted to help. If anyone thinks of it as a competition it is the Ministry.


When you can work together you can do more but I guess the Ministry thinks they are the end all say all on the matter. Because anyone else must be the devil.
edit on 24-10-2013 by Grimpachi because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 10:07 PM
reply to post by Grimpachi

Helping other human beings should transcend nationality, religion and politics.

Anyone with a heart should understand this.

However, I don't see this as a problem with an organization as much as I see it as a problem with an individual and their failure to see what is truly important in life.

posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 10:15 PM
reply to post by Grimpachi

Indeed.. It is odd how some of the charities and street level aid groups work. Salvation Army is an excellent example. They're one of the largest and most helpful organizations in the nation for actual aid to people on the street. They're also unmoving about the 'want our food? hear our sermon'. So be it.. I even sat through them a few times, a long time ago.

It sounds like they're doing a lot of good handing out those kits now too. It's nice to hear they found a great way to help in their very own effort.

posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 10:15 PM
Sad day when Atheist display more christ like behavior than christians.

They where willing to cross ideological lines and differences to help their fellow man.

Christ ate with Prostitutes and Tax collectors (corrupt government agents of the time) the people at the food kitchen would do well to remember that.

They are their to help their fellow man, to feed the hungry, not fight battles about ideology.

posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 10:27 PM
reply to post by Wrabbit2000

I knew I remembered someone saying they had to listen to a sermon when being fed by one of the organizations. I forgot it was you.

I understand that the soup kitchens and such are a tool for them to “bring people to God” but the group was willing to not show that they were atheists and simply wanted to help out.

I am sure they hoped they could advertise they were atheists because let’s face it we have a bad rap.

One of the members wrote this.

I was hoping we'd not only be able to volunteer at the soup kitchen, but also to wear our Upstate Atheists shirts. Not because we are trying to 'convert' people to Atheism, but because we want people to understand that Atheists are not evil people.
I'm afraid to tell people I'm an Atheist, because Atheism seems to be synonymous with evil and hatred. But you don't have to believe in a higher power just to have morals. And what's more, since we're Atheists, we're not expecting a reward of any sort, in this life or any other, we're helping people simply for the sake of helping people. If we could go to places like the soup kitchen, volunteer our time, and be openly Atheist, then the world would start to understand that we can be good people.
We're not trying to get you to be an Atheist. We just want you to be ok with us being Atheist.

posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 10:32 PM
I am neither christian or anything really, But it is their darn kitchen and they can do whatever they want, sorry, I stand with them. If I ran an establishment, I would pick and choose whatever, it is my right as it is my sandbox. This group wants to help, combine YOUR resources and show them how it is done. Competition breeds results and innovation, and who comes out the winner? the people who need this, the homeless...

posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 10:39 PM
Morals come from within. It has nothing to do with what religion a person is (of isn't)

Whether a person is Christian or Muslim or Atheist, there's both good and bad people within each group.

People need to stop defining themselves and everyone else by their beliefs. It's just turning otherwise good people into assholes.

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