“Personal” Relationship with Jesus?

Joel Miller, fine author, probes into the expression “personal relationship” and, rather alarmingly, discovers this is largely unknown until the 1970s. But when we speak of personal faith, or resort to labeling our faith as such in the face of a disagreement over what is or is not true, we run the risk of reducing our creed [Read More...]

Conversion: A Moment, a Process, or…?

Do you think folks convert at a single moment or do you think it happens (for some) over time? Do you think it happens different for different people — some all at once and others over time? Let me give a big sociological sketch first. Studies reveal that folks, in a general sense, “convert” to [Read More...]

Was Paul Converted? NT Wright on the “Conversion” of Paul

The standard reading of the apostle Paul’s life is the story of conversion, and at work in that story is religion and hence of Paul “finding religion” or “leaving religion for faith.” In the altogether exciting 15th chp of NT Wright’s Paul and the Faithfulness of God, Wright pitches his tent in a way that he gets [Read More...]

Leaving Mormonism: A Story

I saw this story by Lynn Wilder and it triggered for me, of course, my studies in conversion theory (Turning to Jesus and, with Hauna Ondrey, Finding Faith, Losing Faith). The summer of 2006, my husband and I mustered the courage to drive two hours away from our largely Mormon community in Utah to attend a [Read More...]

Reasons for Atheism

From Larry Alex Taunton, at The Atlantic (HT: TG): Someone with plenty of experience conversing with those who have left the faith for atheism, Taunton lists the results of some research on why folks walk away. Worth your read and response. It has been my privilege to address college students all over the world, usually [Read More...]

Conversion as Influencing, an Infograph

I found this infograph at Pardot.com, and it opens up some windows (some worrisome ones too) on evangelism, the evangelist and conversion. As some of you know, I have written about conversion in two publications – Turning to Jesus and with Hauna Ondrey Finding Faith, Losing Faith. In the first book especially I dealt with the psychology [Read More...]

Finding Faith, Losing Faith

Some of you know of my interest in patterns in stories of conversion, about which I have written in Turning to Jesus and Finding Faith, Losing Faith (with Hauna Ondrey). One of the elements of conversion is that each conversion entails an apostasy, that is, to come to one thing one leaves another thing. This led to [Read More...]

Atheist to Christian

Megan Hodder: Last Easter, when I was just beginning to explore the possibility that, despite what I had previously believed and been brought up to believe, there might be something to the Catholic faith, I read Letters to a Young Catholic by George Weigel. One passage in particular struck me. Talking of the New Testament miracles and [Read More...]

Informative Report on Muslim Conversions

Since I wrote Turning to Jesus I have maintained a regular interest in specific patterns of conversion, leading to my co-authored Finding Faith, Losing Faith where specific patterns were raised to the surface. Our study was on the pattern of why Catholics become evangelicals, evangelicals become Catholics, and why Jews become Christians. To set it all into [Read More...]

Mud and the Masterpiece

One of my favorite pastors in the USA is John Burke in Austin TX at Gateway Church. John wrote a book sometime back called No Perfect People Allowed, a book that told stories about how his church was formed by imperfect people finding the grace of God and forgiveness in the face of Jesus. So I [Read More...]


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