All week, I’ll be posting about Lauren Winner’s new book, Still: Notes on a Mid-Faith Crisis. I’m doing so because I think it’s an important book, and I hope that you all read it.
Maybe you guessed this is how my series would end. That even through divorce, loneliness, depression, and the occasional bourbon, Lauren has stayed faithful.
Well, that’s not exactly right. It’s not faith, exactly, that has grounded her during her mid-life tumult. It’s religion. She writes,
Some days I am not sure if my faith is riddled with doubt or whether, graciously, my doubt is riddled with faith. And yet I continue to live in a world the way a religious person lives in the world.
That sentence is key, I think. And it is one that I could have written myself. My faith ebbs and flows. I’m more of an agnostic than a believer on most days. And yet I choose to live as a religious person. I go to church, I pray, I read the Bible, I take communion with my community of faith.
Lauren’s book is rife with the patterns of a very religious life — notes about Lent, the Eucharist, fasting, confession, and the like. The patterns of a religious life — specifically, an Episcopal religious life — are what keep Lauren from falling into the abyss.
Me too, Lauren. Me too.
I’ll have a video interview with Lauren here on Monday. Are there any questions you’d like me to ask her?