cover image Searching for Sunday: Loving, Leaving and Finding the Church

Searching for Sunday: Loving, Leaving and Finding the Church

Rachel Held Evans. Thomas Nelson, $16.99 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-0-7180-2212-9

Evans (A Year of Biblical Womanhood) uses the lens of her own journey as an evangelical Christian to explore what is happening in church circles today and, more broadly, what it means to be part of a church community. Evans humorously describes her gradual evolution from a teenager with a "crusader complex" to an adult who became increasingly uncomfortable with her church's conservative theology: "The trouble started when I began to suspect God was less concerned with saving people from hell than I was." Dividing the book into sections named after sacraments, Evans begins by contemplating, in lyrical prose, the theological significance of each sacrament's key ingredient (water, bread, ash, etc.). A powerful storyteller, Evans captures transformative moments, such as leaving a church full "of kind, generous people"; investing wholeheartedly in a new church that "collapsed slowly, one week at a time"; and witnessing healing at the Gay Christian Network's conference, feeling "simultaneously furious at Christianity's enormous capacity to wound and awed by its miraculous capacity to heal." Honest and moving, this memoir is both theologically astute and beautifully written. Agent: Rachel Gardner, Books & Such Literary Agency. (Apr.)