Several religious sites today carried a story about the group in England, basically two stand up comedians, who started a “church”. The comedians developed a program for Sunday mornings that is mostly light hearted, but has intellectual content about secular life.
The enterprise was so successful, the couple has franchised it to several other places in England and here in Los Angeles. They intend to spread their concept far and wide.
The President of American Humanists, Roy Speckhardt, does not think the idea will go too far because, he says, atheists mostly don’t like to be involved in congregational life. He might be right, but things are always changing.
A good question would be, if atheists are meeting Sunday mornings and enjoying programs, how would they be different from Unitarian Universalists? One explanation is provided in the link.
The way I would explain it is that most of the UU church members share a similar idealism. This idealism is acceptance of many religious perspectives, endorsement of peace as opposed to wars and world environmentalism. I did not consult church documents for this, it’s just my impression.
An atheist/agnostic “church” would, I believe, be more like liberatarians are in politics. The are against government, but don’t seem to have a unifying theme of how to run things.
Members of an atheist “church” then might share the view they are not religious, but also not care to join in the idealism of Unitarians. They would assume each person held to his/her own idealism.