WELCOME

Upcoming & Recent Events

Celebrate the Tree of Knowledge on December 4, 2016

The Freethought Society (FS) and the Ethical Humanist Society of Philadelphia (EHSP) invite you to the installation of the 2016 Philadelphia Tree of Knowledge.Tree of Knowledge

The Tree of Knowledge will be decorated as a group effort immediately following the EHSP platform and a Rollin Wilber piano mini-concert on Sunday, December 4, 2016. Hugh Taft-Morales will be the platform speaker.

The 11:00 AM free and open-to-the-public platform takes place in the Ethical Society Building, located at 1906 Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Attendees are encouraged to bring two color copies of the front cover of their favorite book so that an ornament can be made for either use on the 2016 tree or for a home display.

Margaret Downey will be making the ornaments at 1:00 PM in the upstairs meeting room at the EHSP building. Volunteers are needed to assist in creating new ornaments which will help FS improve the diversity of The Tree of Knowledge ornament selection. Ornaments will be available for purchase. These weatherproof ornaments sell for $1-$5, depending on the size.

2016 Tree of Knowledge

Each year since 2010, representatives of the Freethought Society (FS) and leaders from many secular organizations have spoken at the Chester County Commissioners Sunshine Meeting advocating for the inclusion of the secular community symbol, The Tree of Knowledge, in the Winter Holiday public display that is placed on the grounds of the Chester County Courthouse located at Market and High Streets. The Tree of Knowledge was banned from public display when the Commissioners adopted Resolution 58-10 deeming that they, and they alone, would determine which symbols would represent the secular community.Tree of Knowledge

Since then, the Commissioners have determined that the secular community is sufficiently represented by the following items: A Santa Claus figure, candy canes, reindeer, and/or a wire train with white lights. FS contends that these items are not representative of secularists. Year after year, FS conducts an effort to convince the Commissioners that only The Tree of Knowledge symbol is acceptable as a secular winter symbol.

Another attempt to reason with the Commissioners will take place on Tuesday, November 29, 2016 at 10:00 AM.

  • The location of the Sunshine Meeting is: 313 West Market Street, West Chester, Pennsylvania 19380.
  • Please go to the sixth floor Commissioners Board Room.
  • Please be prepared to speak in support of displaying and including the Tree of Knowledge during the 2016 Winter Holiday public display.
  • If you do not want to speak, please make a hand-held sign stating “I support The Tree of Knowledge” to hold up so that the Commissioners know your position in the matter.

Scheduled to address the Commissioners are Hugh Taft-Morales (Ethical Humanist Society Leader), and Glen Loev (vice-president of FS and a representative from the secular Jewish community).

Join us for the 10th Anniversay of Intelligent Design court case

Join us for a very special event!

The Freethought Society (FS) is pleased to be co-sponsoring a very special event with the Ethical Humanist Society of Philadelphia (EHSP) and the Delaware Valley Chapter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State to mark the 10th anniversary of the “Intelligent Design” court case of Tammy Kitzmiller, et al. v. Dover Area School District, et al. (400 F. Supp. 2d 707, Docket No. 4cv2688).

The Sunday, December 6, 2015 event starts with a free and open-to-the-public 11:00 AM, EHSP morning platform featuring Hugh Taft-Morales (EHSP Leader). This event will take place at the EHSP building located at 1906 South Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103.

The 2015 EHSP/FS Tree of Knowledge will be decorated after the platform speech and everyone is invited to participate. There will be music, singing, and books to purchase from authors.

The official 10th Anniversary program starts with a luncheon service at 1:00 PM. The $30 program fee includes lunch, afternoon speakers, a cash bar ($5 wine and champagne) and Happy Hour Closing Ceremony (includes finger foods, music, a celebration cake and photo opportunities). For only $15, you can enjoy just the afternoon speakers and the happy hour. That portion of the event starts at 2:30 PM. The program includes:

Welcome and Opening Words by Event Hosts:
Hugh Taft-Morales, Margaret Downey and Janice Rael

2:30-3:00 PM

  • Welcome and Opening Words by Event Hosts:
  • Hugh Taft-Morales, Margaret Downey and Janice Rael

3:00-3:30 PM

  • Steve Harvey, attorney and owner of Steve Harvey Law

3:30-4:00 PM

  • Eric Rothschild, partner at Pepper Hamilton LLP

4:00-4:30 PM

  • Lauri Lebo, journalist who covered the trial in Dover, PA

4:30-5:00 PM

  • Hedya Aryani, associate at Pepper Hamilton LLP

5:00-5:30 PM

  • Question and Answer Panel with Plaintiffs and Speakers

Reservations are required. Please make your reservations as soon as possible as seats are limited. RSVP at:

http://bit.ly/1Md20hU

Join us for the morning platform, Tree of Knowledge decorating party (There will be a children’s Tree of Knowledge this year!), luncheon, presentations, and happy hour.

July-August 2015 Newsletter

 

Click here to read the July-August 2015 Newsletter

In the newsletter you will find the following articles:

  • Octorara School Board and Residents Defend BSA Public School Assemblies by Margaret Downey
  • Atheism at Work by Elizabeth Bujan
  • The Reverend Barry Lynn’s Visit to Pennsylvania and Delaware by Margaret Downey
  • A Quarter-Century of Fighting to Keep God Out of Government by Tom Melchiorre
  • The Tree of Knowledge Ornament Scan Project by Margaret Downey
  • The Freethought Society’s 2015 Multi-Month Calendar
  • September 11-13, 2015 Pennsylvania State Atheists/Humanist Conference Flyer
  • October 2-4 Washington Area Secular Humanist Conference Flyer
  • Donation, Information, and Volunteer Page

Click here to read the July-August 2015 Newsletter

We hope that you will remain or become an active supporter of the great work FS is doing. Please donate to the general fund or select a project you want to help sponsor. All donations to FS are tax-deductible!  If the newsletter inspires you to become more actively involved with FS, please provide us with your contact information, including your phone number, email address, and mailing address.

Special events are being planned in your area so don’t miss an opportunity to participate further. All personal information is confidential and will not be shared with other organizations. We want supporters to stay informed at all times. To keep updated about events, meetings and issues, please sign up to participate in the FS Discussion List.

Check for upcoming events at the FS Meet Up page.

Like FS on Facebook!

Follow FS on Twitter.

The Freethought Society News Editorial Staff

January-February 2015 FS Newsletter

Click here to read the newsletter:   January-February-2015-FS-News-Web

In the newsletter you will find the following articles:

  • The First Secular Day of the Dead Celebration by Margaret Downey
  • The Lively Celebration of the First Secular Day of the Dead  by Victoria de la Torre
  • Photos of the First Secular Day of the Dead  
  • Voting Beneath the “Head of Christ”  by Wayne Trotta
  • Advocating for the 2014 West Chester, PA Tree of Knowledge by Margaret Downey
  • The Las Vegas, Nevada 2014 Tree of Knowledge by Margaret Downey
  • The Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 2014 Tree of Knowledge by Margaret Downey
  • Promotional Flier for the February 13, 2015 Anti-Superstition Bash and Friggatriskaidekaphobia Treatment Center Event by Carol Everhart Roper
  • School District Under Fire for Hosting Scouts Assembly  by Tim Cwiek  (First Published in the Philadelphia Gay News on December 11, 2014)
  • The Movie Scene by Dennis Middlebrooks
  • The Freethought Society’s 2015 Four-Month Calendar
  • Donation and Information Page

Click here to read the newsletter:   January-February-2015-FS-News-Web

We hope that you will remain or become an active supporter of the great work FS is doing. Please donate to the general fund or select a project you want to help sponsor. All donations to FS are tax-deductible!  If the newsletter inspires you to become more actively involved with FS, please provide us with your contact information, including your phone number, email address, and mailing address.

Special events are being planned in your area so don’t miss an opportunity to participate further. All personal information is confidential and will not be shared with other organizations. We want supporters to stay informed at all times. To keep updated about events, meetings and issues, please sign up to participate in the FS Discussion List.

Check for upcoming events at the FS Meet Up page.

Like FS on Facebook!

Follow FS on Twitter.

The Freethought Society News Editorial Staff