Jonathan D. Fitzgerald grew up in the church, and not just figuratively. From Sunday morning to Saturday evening, every day of his childhood and teenage years was filled with the standard variety of evangelical activities—Christian school, youth group, Pioneers Club, Bible studies, lock-ins, outreach events, concerts, and worship services.
And yet, many of his most transformative experiences with Christianity occurred outside of evangelicalism. In the ninth grade he enrolled in an all-male Catholic high school where he added Catholic social teaching to his Christian experience. From there he attended Gordon College, where he had the opportunity to travel abroad, studying in Nairobi, Kenya. After college, Fitzgerald went on to graduate school at the University of Massachusetts in Boston where he eventually earned an M.A. in English. It was there, in the first secular school he had ever attended, that the plethora of values and beliefs he had been collecting over the years coalesced into a hybrid of Christian traditions.
In 2008, Fitzgerald and his wife Stephanie, a painter, moved from Boston to Jersey City, New Jersey, so Stephanie could pursue an art degree in Manhattan. In that time, Fitzgerald joined the staff of Patrolmag.com and added a number of writing credentials to his resume, including The Wall Street Journal, Christianity Today, Religion Dispatches, The Huffington Post, Killing the Buddha, and The Curator. The journey that began in the classrooms, Sunday schools, and sanctuaries of his youth continues today in reading, writing, and participation in a local episcopal parish.