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In Britain, 100,000 seek 'de-baptism'

In Britain, 100,000 seek 'de-baptism'

Author: AFP
Publication: The Time of India
Date: March 31, 2009
URL: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/World/In-Britain-100000-seek-de-baptism/articleshow/4336932.cms

More than 100,000 Britons have recently downloaded "certificates of de-baptism" from the internet to renounce their Christian faith.

The initiative launched by a group called the National Secular Society (NSS) follows atheist campaigns here and elsewhere, including a London bus poster which triggered protests by proclaiming 'There's probably no God.' "We now produce a certificate on parchment and we have sold 1,500 units at $4.35 a pop," said National Secular Society president Terry Sanderson, 58.

John Hunt, 58, from London is one of the first to try to be "de-baptised." The male nurse said he approached the Church of England to ask it to remove his name. "They said they had sought legal advice and that I should place an announcement in the London gazette," said Hunt. So that's what he did - his notice of renouncement was published in the Gazette in May 2008 and other Britons have followed suit.

De-baptism organisers say the initiative is a response to what they see as increasing stridency from churches. Government figures say 72% of the population list themselves as Christian.

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