Gretta Vosper

Margaret Ann Vosper (born July 6, 1958), known as Gretta Vosper, is an ordained minister of the United Church of Canada who is a self-professed atheist. Her beliefs have caused controversy both within and outside of the United Church. In 2016, following the Charlie Hebdo shooting in Paris, her public statement that the belief in a supernatural God promoted hatred led the United Church of Canada to institute an official review of her suitability as a minister. In 2018 that process was discontinued when Vosper and the United Church reached an agreement that left her free to continue as a minister.


  • The United Church is the only denomination in the world that could declare the Bible is not the authoritative word of God for all time. And that needs to be said by a major recognized denomination in order to undermine every single statement that is made by any religious extremist group — that their document, whether it’s the Bible, the Qur’an or the Bhagavad Gita, is not a divinely authored piece from some supernatural source.
[The United Church has been teaching this stuff in theological colleges for decades], so is it not time to say it publicly? A lot of people would breathe a sigh of relief. And it may set humanity on a different course.
Now it’s not just about me. Now it’s about me and my community.
Clergy who don’t believe are a dime a dozen. But congregations who let them actually be honest about that are extraordinary.

Quotes about GrettaEdit

  • What people kept saying is how can a minister who says she doesn’t believe in God be a minister in the Christian church?
People were confused, and so what we thought was that we need to bring some kind of clarity to the situation.
I’ve had a lot of people getting in touch with me, both who support Gretta and those who are wondering why the church hasn’t done something long ago on this one. What I keep saying is that the review is an opportunity for us to do the investigation and then to know at the end of it good reasons why she should be allowed to continue as a minister with the United Church, or have good reasons why she should not be.”
  • Gretta has called herself 'an atheist minister'. While that language is startling to some, the Christian academy knows exactly what she is saying. To refer to oneself as an 'atheist' does not mean that one is asserting that there is no God; it means that the 'theistic' definition of God is no longer operative or believable.

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