I would like the Reason Project to investigate and report on the activities of Christian missionaries throughout the world.
There’s been very little discussion about Christian missionaries in most of the Atheism books that have come out over the past few years.
Having spent a lot of time living overseas, particularly in Asia, I’ve seen firsthand the deceptive practices and brainwashing that the missionaries engage in. They abuse the idea of “Freedom of religion,” as a means to travel around the world, with vast funding from American churches, and convert people, often using underhanded methods.
Perhaps some Atheist writers feel that converting people from one religious belief to another doesn’t really matter, as they are all deluded anyway. Though an atheist myself, I find the hardcore fundamentalist Christianity practised by Christian missionaries (95% of which seem to be American) is much more damaging than the native Asian religions (i.e., Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, Confusciasm) that are practised in many of the regions where missionaries are active. I’ve never met a Buddhist or Hindu who insisted I would go to hell if I didn’t believe in their saviour or follow their religion. It isn’t only an attack on the native religions, it is an attack on foreign cultures, as many Christian converts won’t even take part in non-Christian cultural gatherings and family events. Creating more born-again Christian is never a good thing, especially in countries where Christianity isn’t the native religion.
Many people who defend missionaries, including atheists, will claim that they “do good work”. Well, none of the” work” they do is for free, as they proselytise to the people they claim they are helping. Often times only the people who convert, and go to the missionary planted church, get help. So many missionaries offer “Free English lessons,” but they require anyone receiving the so-called free lessons to go to a church service first. And the bible is used as part of the English lessons. This is taking advantage of people, not helping them.
Each of these points can be a topic in itself.
Hopefully, there will be more interest and attention paid to missionaries and the damage they are doing to native cultures around the world.
If Christian missionaries would just stay away from the “hardcore fundamentalist” stuff, and the underhanded, shady stuff…..and just try to be more like Jesus (and LESS like Pat Robertson), then I would have no problems with their missions.
I agree that they should be investigated and reported on, because everyone should be accountable for their conduct. And if they have nothing to hide, then they should not be afraid of the occasional TV camera or inquisitive investigator.
I think there will be a time (not soon enough, fortunately) where a lot of people are going to realize that the main reason missionaries do what they do is just to spread their “word.”
Proselytising to people in need is taking advantage of them. Proselytising to anyone is disrespectful, as it shows that they don’t respect people’s native religion (or atheism).
I know a Cambodian girl whose college was paid for by a retired American doctor. What did she have to do in return? She had to go to a church in Phnom Penh, planted by American missionaries, every week and sign the book as proof. He would quiz her to make sure she was studying the bible. All that for 200 bloody dollars. I can recount dozen of stories like this.
Proselytising is just a dirty business, altogether, and American churches are funding missionaries worldwide. The “Faith-based initiative” also funds religious groups that engage in proselytising, though the money is supposedly not supposed to be spent on proselytising itself, though I don’t know how anyone can keep a tab on that. Koreans are quite active in the missionary business as well, of course they were first brainwashed by American missionaries, which makes them second generation brainwashers.