Springfield, MO – Leaders for the atheist group sponsoring the 4th annual Skepticon convention this weekend at the Gillioz are praying to God that they’ll have another good turnout. “Sweet Jesus, please make our event a success,” claimed one leader, hands clasped and kneeling before a makeshift temple of crucifixes and lit candles.
For non-believers, the message is about finding others who are skeptical about the message of religion. “If, by God, we can find enough people to help us raise awareness, then the entire event will be a success,” said Norm MucChuckles, an event volunteer.
Skepticon followers have been sending out individualized prayers to leaders of monotheistic faiths including God, Jesus and Mohammad and are even reaching out to other soul savers such as Buddha, Zeus, Jupiter and the Egyptian sun god Ra. “Attendance numbers are tied to each prayer and the final number of attendees will point toward the dominant deity, if one truly does exist or decide to make themselves known we will find out this weekend. Jesus is tied to 1,054; Zeus has 1,201; Ra is coming in at 987. We also have a number, 56, tied to nothing; that is, one group is only praying to a homeless man who spilt diet Coke on me,” said MucChuckles.
The group has secured billboards on I-44 to promote their beliefs and hopes that others will join them in their journey to find answers. MucChuckles said, “We’re also selling raffle tickets to those willing to put some money where their beliefs are. $5 gets you one square on our attendance sheet. If your god shows up you could walk away with a handsome sum of money!”