So I'm an intern at a funeral home in a small town (about 15,000 people), it's a pretty religious town, consisting mostly of catholics or baptists. My job obviously involves a great deal of praying, masses, communions, keeping reputations with pastors and priests, and the like. My issue is that as I work in a funeral home in such a small community I'm having a tough time admitting to anybody that I'm an atheist for fear of it hurting my job, or my funeral home. I know I wouldn't be fired for saying I'm an atheist, but I still fear the potential impact it might have on where I work. How do my fellow TA's deal with issues like this?

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Tags: Funerral, Job, Small, town

Comment by Amy P. Campbell on August 15, 2011 at 9:57pm

Felt the same way about my teaching job.

Comment by Rick on August 16, 2011 at 12:03am

Your situation is kind of unique in that religion is intertwined with your profession. Add to that the fact that you’re an intern and your situation becomes particularly precarious.


As for the job itself, I don’t see a conflict of interest.  The fact that part of your job is to facilitate and accommodate religious ceremonies should have no impact on you as an atheist. You’re providing a service to your clients. Who cares whether or not they choose to include religious aspects. Christian money is just as good as any other.


Now, for the little personal things that will arise that are in direct conflict with your beliefs, you have to choose if it’s even worth addressing. Ultimately, you chose the profession. If it’s really something you want to do, I’d say suck it up …at least until the internship is over.


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