Why Patheos?

At just about the time I was moving my blog to beliefnet, I received an email from Deborah Arca, editor of the mainline Christian portal at patheos. She invited me to participate in a “theoblogger challenge” by writing an answer to the question “Who Is God?, in 100 words or less. I enjoyed the challenge, and Deborah later invited me to participate in other questions, including “Why I Need the Resurrection,” Spiritual Renewal in Times of Crisis, and What Book Has Changed Your Life?, among others. From there, I was invited to participate in Patheos’ Book Club with reflections on Steven Prothero’s God Is Not One and Kent Anan’s After Shock (The Faith of a Doubter).

Two things happened as I began to write for Patheos. One, I began to form relationships with some of the editors here. At the same time, beliefnet was acquired by a new company and as a result I was less able to get to know the people working at the company. But online conversations with Deborah and Tim Dalrymple (editor of the evangelical portal) served as encouragements to me as a writer and as a person of faith. When they approached me about moving my blog, I was excited about the possibility. As I mentioned earlier today, this blog is about relationships, and I’m glad to have found a home where I already know and respect some members of the community.

Two, I began to explore Patheos, and I liked what I saw. Patheos took religion and spirituality seriously, and it was willing to offer comprehensive coverage of difficult topics (see, for instance, the resources dedicated to Faith and Doubt, or to Rob Bell’s recent book and the controversy over universalism). Moreover, one of my desires as a Christian is to be in conversation with people who see the world differently than I do. Sometimes those conversations need to happen within the church–between “liberal” and “conservative” believers. Other times those conversations happen among people of different faiths, and sometimes between believer and agnostic/atheist. I hope my writing will build bridges among communities, and I believe patheos is a site that contributes to the same type of bridge-building. Patheos also doesn’t have pop up ads on blogs, which I hope will be a welcome change for everyone!

Although I have no plans to change the content of the blog, I do hope this new home will offer even more opportunities for me as a writer to forge connections and conversations with others who are asking similar questions. And hopefully it will offer a host of other resources for readers.

Whether you are a new reader or an avid follower, are there questions or topics you’d like to see going forward? Use the comments section to add your thoughts and to join the conversation.

About Amy Julia Becker

Amy Julia Becker writes and speaks about family, faith, disability, and culture. A graduate of Princeton University and Princeton Theological Seminary, she is the author of Penelope Ayers: A Memoir, A Good and Perfect Gift (Bethany House), and Why I Am Both Spiritual and Religious (Patheos Press).


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