12 thoughts on “Anne Atkins

  1. My 99 year old mother is currently ‘trapped’ in her care home and quite seriously ill. She’s likely to die at some point during this ‘lock down’. My sister and I have been discussing what our limited options might be should we have to organise a funeral in these circumstances. With that in mind it was interesting to hear how another family worked through a similar conundrum. So for me, unbelievably, an interesting and relevant TftD for once. And delivered by Anne Atkins. Strange times indeed.


  2. Strange times indeed.

    It feels like it should be part of an apocalyptic prediction, something one of those wandering preachers might have said:

    And in those days, the antelope will hunt the lion, the bird shall swim and the fish shall fly, and Anne Atkins will talk sense.


  3. I’ve been self isolating for the past two weeks as my wife and daughter have had some, relatively mild, flu symptoms. I retire tomorrow so I was thinking that I could volunteer once my quarantine period is up. Of course, they won’t let me because I’m a diabetic and therefore in a high risk category. My last day at work didn’t quite turn out as expected.


    1. Congratulations on your retirement, Stonyground. I’m sorry it didn’t work out as you might have hoped. I have two colleagues for whom the same thing has happened.


  4. Yes, a TftD from Anne where I was actually rooting for her. That’s the thing about TftD: when it is more about the “person” than “belief”, then its appeal is broadened accordingly, and as a non-theist I can empathise with the speaker so much more.

    I think that’s probably why the likes of Mona, and our old, fondly-remembered friend Lionel Blue are comfortably the most highly regarded round these parts.



  5. Yesterday, my mother’s church sent a message to her saying that one of the congregation had access to 20 loaves which they could share out. I immediately thought that if they could get a fishmonger to donate 50 fish and if Jesus could get off his backside he could feed 50000. Maybe Anne could use this as her introductory joke next time.

    Further commiserations to Anne as she and her family struggle to arrange her father’s funeral. My son and his wife should have been attending a friend’s funeral yesterday and it had to be restricted to just a few family members – such a pity for all those who would have attended if god had chosen not to run this pandemic experiment despite all those prayers asking for things to get better.
    But despite starting with “All things work together for good for those who love God” Anne then describes a litany of problems faced by her clearly god-loving family and no doubt many other families trying to organise a funeral at present. Funerals are one of the rites of passage that humans have relied on for millennia and it would seem rather mean spirited of any god to whom you pray to deny you this.
    She continues with, “What really cheers me is the indomitable resourcefulness of the human spirit” and surely this is the more obvious thing to sing our praises to rather than a god who seems to ignore every prayer offered to it. Come on Anne, let’s think more critically: humans are generally good and don’t need superstition and threat of eternal damnation to do good things.
    Apparently “…nothing shall separate us from the love of god which is in Christ”. Anne seems to be very picky about what she considers to be the good that god and his son are doing at present.

    Despite this, having organised the funeral of my daughter recently where over 200 of her family and friends attended and shared in our sorrow, I feel desperately sorry for Anne and anyone else at present who is being denied the chance to show their respects for lives well lived.


  6. Thanks Peter. The week before Christmas. Working abroad and taken ill suddenly but died before anything could be done. No definite cause found so it has been very upsetting. We organised a Humanist funeral which was beautiful and gave lots of people the chance to hear about her life and celebrate it with us using these songs.


    1. I’ve always found a Humanist celebration of someone’s life to be far more uplifting than the dreary, unconvincing words of religious ceremonies.

      While I sympathise with Anne Atkins’ grief, we all expect to bury our parents. I can’t imagine what it must be like to lose a child.


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