So You Think You're Not Religious? A Thinking Person's Guide to the Church

So You Think You're Not Religious? A Thinking Person's Guide to the Church; Boston: Cowley Publications, 1989. 0936 384 697. Reviewed for The Counselor by the Reverend W. Benjamin Pratt, Fellow, American Association of Pastoral Counselors; Clinical Member, American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy

Pastor James Adams has become a stimulating teacher in his challenging and thought-provoking book. Jim Adams, the pastor of St. Mark's Church on Capitol Hill has been bringing the Good News to sceptics for years. He has now spelled it out in this book which interprets many of the stumbling blocks with meaningful, inviting and intellectually relevant language. "Faith," says Adams, "is the capacity to accept the reality around us and within us." In like manner, Adams gives meaning to many of the notions—the virgin birth, the miracles in the Bible, the second coming, the resurrection of the body, and other issues—that have confounded many who have refused to cross the doors of the church in our time. He makes a warm and compassionate place for prayer in our lives as a practical possibility for the life of thinking people. He gives thoughtful meaning to the rituals available in the church for the times of transition in our lives: marriage, birth, death, communion, and life journey transitions reflected in the church year.

Many who come to me as a pastoral counselor come with deep doubts, painful discouragement, or just bad thinking about the church and religious journey. Adams hasn't provided all the answers and some which he offers are suspect, but his clear, provocative, well researched approach is worth serious reading, study, and discussion. If you are one whose faith and religious life is filled with scepticism and doubt, but you have energy to read one more book, this is the one you should read!

One disclaimer. I wish he had not written this book with such an Episcopal bias. This book is for persons of all denominations, all faiths. I hope it will be read and studied by persons of all faiths who are serious about their religious pilgrimage.