Little info: my entire family is Catholic.

Anyway, I have two uncles that have two baby girls close to the same age. One of them is having my baby cousin baptized in about two weeks. I'm not sure how I feel about going to a church again. Should I go, you guys?

I have another problem. My other uncle asked me if I wanted to be my baby cousin's godmother. I don't know what to do. I don't want to because I'm an Atheist! I also don't want to sound mean.

I don't know what to do about both of these situations. I'm 20 years old by the way.


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Godmother is a woman who agrees to take responsibility for the child if the parents are dead.  My son had godparents who are both atheists.  If it's a Catholic ceremony there might be some religious conditions (crap), but you are the one who would raise them, so screw the church.

Thanks. I'll definitely take that into consideration.

If you are not ready to disclose your atheism you are in a jam. They will not understand why you declined. We atheists deal with this sort of thing all the time. I find it's usually best to be upfront-But not always !! It could depend on how independent you are.

Well both of my uncles actually do know that I am an Atheist! I still don't know why one of them would ask me to be a godmother...

I became a godfather before asking about religious implications. (Duh!) The family was religious, but I was not asked to participate religiously, so it all seemed to work out. Or should I say, nothing ever really came of it. I don't even recall if they knew I was atheist. Looking back now, I wish I had discussed it with them, to give them a chance to choose someone else.

Interesting. Thank you!

(some nice music or food sometimes too)

I have to disagree about this.

I always found churches kind of cheap in this regard.  Where on earth do they manage to find such low quality crackers and grape juice?  (Or wine in some cases.) They must have to search far and wide.  And then, having found such low quality refreshments, they skimp on the portion size, too.  What's up with that?

I think one of your duties as a godparent goes beyond merely seeing that the kid is fed and sheltered and would involve raising them in the religion of their parents (after all, that's what they'd want, right?).

@Unseen & Kari Flores;

"...and would involve raising them in the religion of their parent..."

This is a salient point.  If the position "doGparent" requires raising the child in the religion of the parents Kari must decline the role, anything less would be dishonest.

I would assume so, yes.

Assuming the above is devil's-advocating and not just pure snark, I disagree.  The parents, like most, presumably want to raise their child the best they can, so raising it religious is misguided and misinformed, but certainly not malicious.  One has to assume that their choice of person to be their child's Godmother fits this pattern, i.e. they think having Kari take over as a parent in the event of their deaths would be the best thing for the child.  If they know that Kari's an atheist, and unless they have stipulated otherwise, this seems at least a tacit acceptance of the possibility of raising the girl irreligiously. 

I don't know Kari nor do I know the parents, but IF the parents ARE religious and WISH the doGparent to raise the child according to their religion, THEN Kari must decline the position rather then be dishonest.

Kari could however offer to raise the child in a loving manner without the influence of ANY religion until the child reaches the age of majority.

If I were in Kari's position I would make it clear to the parents how I would raise the child in the happenstance of their untimely deaths.

In these types of situations honesty is always the BEST policy.


As an aside, what if the parents agree to have Kari raise the child in a non-religious household, raise their child in a devout religious manner but die when the child is 10 years old?

I can see this being a problem for Kari, 10 years of brainwashing will be difficult to overcome. 

Personally I would probably decline unless the parents wished to convert to Atheism. :)


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