Who We Are
Oasis is, quite simply, a secular alternative to faith-based community. We want to give people the sort of community experience that many of us experienced in churches growing up, but without the dogma. A place where we can refresh ourselves among people who share our secular, humanity-focused values. Oasis communities participate in discussion groups, neighborhood potlucks, community service and charity events, all of the types of things you would expect from an extended local community.
We are guided by core values, which define our communities. They shape our interactions with each other, society and the world. At Oasis, we think:
1) People are more important than beliefs.
2) Reality is known through reason.
3) Meaning comes from making a difference
4) Human hands solve human problems.
5) Be accepting and be accepted.
Oasis is also a great option for secular families. Kansas City Oasis’s Executive Director Helen Stringer elaborated on this. “One of the most important reasons for organizing KC Oasis is children and families. Whether we like it or not, churches are pursuing our children. When my son’s classmates talk about going to a church youth function and how much fun it was, he automatically wants to go and doesn’t understand why we don’t. Lets face it, churches do a lot of fun things with kids: lock-ins, parties, group games, ski trips, etc. When I was growing up, these things were the highlight of my youth. The church wants you to believe it’s all the supernatural stuff that helps people, but the social benefits of belonging to a community is the real magic—a magic we shouldn’t let churches monopolize any longer. As a parent, I want my kids to have a safe place to explore their developing worlds view. A place where it’s not just okay to ask questions, but encouraged.”
Oasis is a place for humanists, agnostics, skeptics, atheists, freethinkers, deists, even some theists, to come together into the sort of community that has become the purview of churches, and to do so without super-naturalism or spiritualism. A community bonded by shared values, not shared beliefs or dogma. We are guided by core values, which define our communities. They shape our interactions with each other, society, and the world.
Recent statistics put the number of “nones” (meaning those with no religious affiliation) at close to 20% of adults in the United States. At the same time, people who are openly non-believers are among the most distrusted groups in our society. Oasis is an opportunity for the Nones to have a place they can find a sense of community. A place where we can feel at home, unjudged, and valued.