Advertisement

Flunking Sainthood

Flunking Sainthood

Christianity Archives

Thank You, Flunking Sainthood Readers!

posted by Jana Riess

OK, I admit it. I have a Google Alert on the title Flunking Sainthood, so that the search engine lets me know when there are new reviews or discussions about the book. In the last few weeks it has been […]

Advertisement

Fun with the Book of Lamentations

posted by Jana Riess

Actually, no. That title was just a teaser. There really aren’t any fun moments in the Book of Lamentations, which is why I had to make my own with the Twible. As you’ve probably guessed, Lamentations is a bit of […]

Advertisement

Why Do We Do Spiritual Practices?

posted by Jana Riess

I’ve been editing a superb book recently by Lynne Baab on spiritual practices. (Called Joy Together, it’ll be out in the fall.) After exploring what congregations and churches can do to grow with God together by trying contemplative prayer, Sabbath-keeping, […]

Advertisement

A More Spiritual 2012: Failing Forward with God

posted by Jana Riess

Happy New Year, friends. This year on my blog (which, BTW, is moving locations! More on that soon), I’ll be talking at least once a week about spiritual practices and how/whether to implement them. Why do we pray, give to […]

What the Christian Century’s Top Stories of the Year Say about Protestant Anxiety

posted by Jana Riess

I just found out that my autumn Christian Century story on “The Mormon Moment” was the magazine’s second-most popular article of 2011. But this isn’t because the article was particularly well-written or insightful; it wasn’t. I tried to do too […]

The Yucky Underside of the Nativity: Or, What You Won’t See in Next Year’s Christmas Pageant

posted by Jana Riess

A friend of mine recently pointed out that tomorrow is the Feast of the Holy Innocents. Don’t know what that is? Neither did I. In a nutshell, it marks that icky, violent part of the nativity story that every Christmas […]

Thoughts on sainthood with a Lower-Case S

posted by Jana Riess

No grand cohesive post today, just a couple of musings on what it means to be a saint. What I’ve found through researching (read: screwing up) and writing Flunking Sainthood is that many people (read: my friends and I) have […]

Busy Women, Advent Conspiracies, and the Countdown to Christmas

posted by Jana Riess

I love this post from Ellen Painter Dollar over at the Introverted Church blog. She hits upon something fundamental about the irony of December: the Advent season encourages us to slow down and embrace silent reflection even as the wider […]

Bonhoeffer, Week 3: “Your Redemption Is Drawing Near” in Advent

posted by Jana Riess

In Week 3 of Advent, our Wednesday devotion from Bonhoeffer brings ever closer the question of redemption: what does it mean for us? Clearly, we’re looking for “something different from the anxious, petty, depressed, feeble Christian spirit that we see […]

Bonhoeffer, Week 2: The “Wonder of All Wonders” in Advent

posted by Jana Riess

This is our second week of Advent Wednesday devotions from Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s God is in the Manger: Reflections on Advent and Christmas.  Today’s theme is how God makes himself meek and lowly in order to be with us. Why can’t […]

25 Books Every Christian Should Read. Plus A Few More They Forgot.

posted by Jana Riess

I have a soft spot for guides like 25 Books Every Christian Should Read, which has been reviewed by multiple bloggers recently as part of the Patheos Book Club Roundtable. I tend to like books that direct me to other […]

Bonhoeffer, Week 1: “Christ Is Standing at the Door” in Advent

posted by Jana Riess

As I did last year, I’m going to spend Wednesdays during Advent posting snippets from a devotional I compiled from some of the writings and sermons of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Today, he preaches about the challenges of waiting for Jesus . […]

Masada’s Women: A Review of Alice Hoffman’s “The Dovekeepers”

posted by Jana Riess

When I was nineteen years old I traveled for a month in Israel as part of a college Wintersession experience. Israel is always a contentious place, but especially at that time during the height of the intifada; any naïve idealism […]

“Flunking Sainthood” News and Video

posted by Jana Riess

I’m feeling very humbled and grateful today and wanted to express that on the blog. Thanks to everyone who has helped to make these last two weeks so special in my life as a writer, either by dropping me a […]

Jesus and Superman: Do We Really Need the Backstory?

posted by Jana Riess

Here’s a fun and quirky Friday musing from my buddy Leighton Connor, a Comicon fanboy and thoughtful Christian who’s part of my writing group in Cincinnati. I especially love the last line: “I like my Jesus like I like my […]

The Moral of “Colonial House”: Academics Like Me Are Entirely Useless

posted by Jana Riess

As part of our family’s homeschooling in American history, I’ve been revisiting the old PBS series Colonial House, in which about two dozen contemporary people recreate New England of 1628 by living for several months in a replica colony that […]

Ragamuffin Brennan Manning Teaches That “All Is Grace”

posted by Jana Riess

Everyone loves a reformed sinner, and Brennan Manning provides that in spades in his new memoir All Is Grace: A Ragamuffin Memoir. On second thought, I think the Irish-American Catholic writer might borrow from Protestant reformer John Calvin in adopting […]

Flunking Contemplative Prayer . . . Where Was Richard Foster When I Needed Him?

posted by Jana Riess

I got an F in Centering Prayer. I truly thought I would love that particular spiritual practice. I enjoy—even crave—silence as a part of every day. Also, I liked the notion of a deep prayer that would transcend the checklists […]

“Flunking Sainthood” Now Available

posted by Jana Riess

I never thought I would write a memoir, and still maintain that no one ever should. There are far too many memoirs published already. But … well, there it is. I wrote one, and it’s out this week. I hope […]

“One Thousand White Women” and Religious Stereotypes

posted by Jana Riess

Last month, the Cincinnati library system (which is outstanding, in case you’re not lucky enough to live here) chose One Thousand White Women as the book for the city to read. By happenstance, one of my book clubs chose it […]

Publish Your Book on Amazon: A Q&A with Tony Jones (Part 2)

posted by Jana Riess

  Yesterday we talked with Tony Jones about the content of his new book, The Church Is Flat. Today we’re doing a behind-the-scenes look at why he decided to self-publish for the first time, and what he learned from the […]

The Church Is Flat: A Q & A with Tony Jones (Part 1)

posted by Jana Riess

When I think about my favorite folks in the emerging church conversation, one of them is certainly Tony Jones, one of the movement’s founders. It was Tony’s book The New Christians that first introduced me to the idea of church […]

Becoming Gods: What Mormons Won’t Hear in This Weekend’s General Conference

posted by Jana Riess

This week, the cover story in the Christian Century is one I was asked to write about the “Mormon Moment” in America today, and all the attention given to the LDS faith in the wake of Broadway’s Book of Mormon […]

New Podcast: NT Scholar NT Wright on Revelation

posted by Jana Riess

So it turns out that N.T. Wright gets almost as irritated as I do when people say “Revelations” and not “Revelation” to refer to the final book of the New Testament. I’m always delighted to be joined in my pedantry, […]

Buffy & Religion: Fun with Podcasts!

posted by Jana Riess

I’ve recently had the privilege of being interviewed for John Morehead’s TheoFantastique podcast, which explores the intersection of sci fi/fantasy and religion. We had a great conversation over Skype about Buffy, Buddhism, postmodern cafeteria religion, and the commodification of the […]

Palmer Chinchen on Why He Hates Regret

posted by Jana Riess

Here’s a guest blog post from activist Palmer Chinchen, author of the new book God Can’t Sleep. Here’s what Publishers Weekly had to say about it: GOD CAN’T SLEEP: Waiting for Daylight on Life’s Dark Nights Palmer Chinchen. David C. […]

Burying Dad

posted by Jana Riess

Tomorrow, I am burying my father’s ashes in a little cemetery in southern Illinois, where he can be laid to rest near his parents. It’s an odd kind of closure. Some of you know that my father crashed back into […]

Have You Hugged a Proverb Today?

posted by Jana Riess

This morning I tweeted the last chapter of the Book of Proverbs: #Twible Prov 31: Dawn to-do list: Buy estate. Make winter coats. Weave cloth 1st. Make family look good. Be strong. Get Michelle Obama arms. As I worked my […]

If the World’s Getting Better, Why Do Americans Need Xanax?: Bradley Wright Falls Short with “Upside”

posted by Jana Riess

With riots in London, a nosedive in the stock market, and Michelle Bachmann dominating the airwaves, it’s hard to believe that the world is actually getting better. In fact, declension seems all but assured. Yet continuous improvement is the thesis […]

Ask a Mormon: FAQ

posted by Jana Riess

Today on Rachel Held Evans’s blog, I attempt to answer her readers’ top questions about Mormonism. You can also check out prior interviews in her “Ask” series, in which she’s talked to an atheist, a Catholic, and an Orthodox Jew. […]

Alabama Churches Fight New Anti-Immigration Law

posted by Jana Riess

Yesterday in Alabama, leaders from the Roman Catholic, Episcopalian, and Methodist denominations filed suit to halt enforcement of the state’s harsh new immigration law. (Apparently they’re in good company:  late yesterday, the justice department of the federal government also sued […]

Hells Bells! Francis Chan Erases Hell, and Refutes Bell, in New Book

posted by Jana Riess

For someone who doesn’t actually believe in hell, I’ve spent a lot of time reading about it lately, a prurient pastime that I’ll leave others to psychoanalyze. In the last two years there have been some fascinating books on the […]

Gush, Gush . . . I Got to Interview Barbara Brown Taylor!

posted by Jana Riess

This month’s WJK Radio podcast has been posted, and I am all aflutter. Barbara Brown Taylor is one of my favorite spirituality writers, so it was a great honor to get to talk to her. You’ll be impressed with how […]

Are Younger Evangelicals More Respectful of Mormonism than the Old Guard?

posted by Jana Riess

As I mentioned recently on Flunking Sainthood, I had the opportunity earlier this month to be a guest on the Mormon Matters podcast with LDS blogger Joanna Brooks and evangelical pastor John Morehead, talking about theological differences between our religions. […]

Al Hsu Says God Is an Editor. Love This.

posted by Jana Riess

“An editor has an eschatological hopefulness that in the end a manuscript can become much more than it presently is; that it can find fulfillment and fruition in new and unexpected ways.” –Al Hsu Al Hsu (pronounced “shee”) is an […]

Social Media “Friending” as a Spiritual Practice? A Q&A with Lynne Baab

posted by Jana Riess

I’ve been a fan of Lynne Baab‘s writing since I read her book on fasting a few years ago. I draw from it in the fasting chapter of Flunking Sainthood and highly recommend it. Now, I also have the pleasure […]

Where Is God in Chronic Illness?

posted by Jana Riess

As we continue with our Thursday Spirituality series for May, we draw from what I thought was one of the most powerful essays in Allan Cole’s anthology A Spiritual Life. I had not heard of Elizabeth Damewood Gaucher before, but […]

May 21: It’s the End of the World As We Know It. Again.

posted by Jana Riess

Well, I’m going to be a little snarky here and hazard a prediction that the world will not really end on Saturday. Or even that the rapture will occur, taking 3% of the world’s population now before the world really […]

Lauren Winner on Why She Is A Christian

posted by Jana Riess

As we continue our Thursday Spirituality series for the month of May, we draw another excerpt from Allan Cole’s newly published book A Spiritual Life. This comes from my friend Lauren Winner, who is asked all the time why she […]

Novelist Gail Godwin on Writing as Prayer

posted by Jana Riess

On this, our National Day of Prayer, it seems fitting to kick off our Thursday series for the month of May. Each week, I’ll be featuring a short excerpt from Allan Cole‘s book A Spiritual Life, which is a new […]

Cover art for “Flunking Sainthood”

posted by Jana Riess

Got my cover art today! I am so pleased with what Paraclete came up with. Here is the second draft, with some more small tweaks on color & text to come. –JKR  

Pastor Brady Boyd on the Shootings at New Life Church and the Hope of Easter

posted by Jana Riess

On this, the anniversary of the Columbine high school shootings, I’m giving space to a book excerpt from Brady Boyd, a pastor in Colorado who has seen his own share of violent tragedy. In December 2007, a gunman opened fire […]

What Evangelicals Might Learn from Mormons … and Mormons Should Learn from Rob Bell

posted by Jana Riess

Rob Bell is my kind of heretic. His new book Love Wins: A Book about Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived has been loudly branded as heresy by fellow evangelicals Mark Driscoll and John Piper. […]

Chatting with Brian McLaren, Part 2

posted by Jana Riess

Brian McLaren talks about the 12 spiritual practices that can change your life, the future of Protestant denominations, and how he brings his books to life.   Today we continue the Q&A we started yesterday with Brian McLaren, one of […]

Satan Sues Rob Bell for Defamation; Seeks $18B in Damages Over “Love Wins”

posted by Jana Riess

April 1, 2011 Satan announced today that Hell has filed for civil damages against HarperOne author Rob Bell, whose new book Love Wins hit shelves in March and has raised, well, hell. In the book, Bell asserts a universalist theology, […]

Good Reads: Thrift Store Saints

posted by Jana Riess

Have you ever preferred to simply write a check to charity rather than get involved in people’s messy, desperate lives? I confess that I have. Thankfully, some people are more courageous and compassionate than I am. One of them is […]

Megachurch Pastor Tony Evans on God, Football, and Racial Unity

posted by Jana Riess

Tony Evans, pastor of the 8,000 member Oak Cliff Bible Church in Dallas, has become a popular voice in evangelicalism. His new book Oneness Embraced explores the theme of racial reconciliation in American Christianity, arguing for God’s “team” to include […]

Sex & Young Adults: Thoughts from Guest Blogger Michael F. Duffy

posted by Jana Riess

College and young adulthood: an exciting time, a confusing time. One of the most exciting and confusing aspects is sex. How far is too far? What is “moral” behavior — and how do we define what we mean by morality? […]

If You Agree with Rob Bell, Check Out Greg Garrett’s New Book

posted by Jana Riess

If, like me, you’ve been following the brouhaha over Rob Bell’s alleged universalism in the last week — and if, like me, you wonder why it is such a big deal that a pastor might choose to emphasize a theology […]

What Are You Doing for Lent?

posted by Jana Riess

Well, it’s Fat Tuesday, and amidst all the consumption of Paczki and Pancakes and such, I need to decide today what I’m doing for Lent. Which — gulp — starts tomorrow. And I want your help. In the past, I’ve […]

What’s the Least I Can Believe and Still Be a Christian?

posted by Jana Riess

Recently on WJK Radio, I had the pleasure of co-interviewing Martin Thielen, author of the new book What’s the Least I Can Believe and Still Be a Christian? The book is taking off as a group study guide for churches. […]

To Tweet or Not to Tweet?

posted by Jana Riess

As many of you know, I am a daily Twitter person, tweeting out a chapter of the Bible every day with humorous — okay, sometimes snarky — commentary. For the last year and a half I’ve been deeply interested in […]

Religion and Bob Dylan

posted by Jana Riess

The Gospel According to Bob Dylan? Well, why not? Author Michael J. Gilmour sits down to explain why “Bobheads” continue to find spiritual meaning in Bob Dylan’s music almost 50 years after Dylan’s debut album was released. –JKR So, why […]

The Best Christian Books of 2010

posted by Jana Riess

Christianity Today has come out with its annual book awards for the best Christian books of last year. There are serious theological books by the likes of Alister McGrath, new religious fiction by Anne Rice, and a book I hadn’t […]

Christians Should Be Slaves: Guest Blogger John MacArthur

posted by Jana Riess

All your childhood, when people asked you what you wanted to be when you grew up, I’m guessing you didn’t say “slave.” But according to evangelical writer and pastor John F. MacArthur, that’s what every Christian should aspire to. It’s […]

Religion vs. the Individual in “The King’s Speech”

posted by Jana Riess

I’ve started to write about pop culture a couple of times a month at Gathering Voices, a new blog from The Thoughtful Christian. I’m in great company with fellow bloggers like Greg Garrett, Adam Copeland, Lynn Baab and Don McKim. […]

Click Here to Help Haiti!: A Q&A with Haiti Partners Co-Director Kent Annan

posted by Jana Riess

You may have heard Kent Annan in the news recently, whether blogging for CNN about the first anniversary of the Haiti earthquake or describing the social perils of “poverty tourism” in the Huffington Post. As the co-director of Haiti Partners, […]

Homosexual Acceptance = Spiritual But Not Religious? “American Grace” and the Rise of the Nones

posted by Jana Riess

There’s an interesting Q&A over at the Faith and Leadership Network today with Robert Putnam, co-author of the book American Grace, which I and others have blogged about recently. One of the book’s most surprising findings is the dramatic increase […]

Christian Faith Reignited . . . At a Mosque? Leanna Tankersley’s Story

posted by Jana Riess

I’m always looking for interfaith stories, and this one is beautiful. Healing words like Leanna’s are especially needed nowadays, when many of her fellow evangelical Christians are deeply suspicious of Islam. –JKR “A Borrowed Abaya and a Middle Eastern Mosque” […]

The Vast Virtual Body of Christ: Cancer Patient Deanna Thompson on the Beauty of the Internet

posted by Jana Riess

Stage 4 cancer at 42? That was the diagnosis for Hamline University theology professor Deanna Thompson, who has blogged elsewhere about the diagnosis and her faith. Here she ruminates on how cancer opened her up to receive blessings from people […]

Epiphany with Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Week 6

posted by Jana Riess

Happy New Year! And, perhaps more importantly, Happy Epiphany. In the Christian tradition, Epiphany is a time of “showing” (epiphany means “appearance”); it celebrates the arrival of the Magi, who traveled from afar to bring Jesus gifts of gold, frankincense, […]

Attention Publicists, Authors, and Bloggers: Opportunities to Guest Post

posted by Jana Riess

Friends, as many of you know, I am going to be teaching part-time during the spring semester at Miami University of Ohio. I’m excited about this opportunity, but since this is in addition to my regular job as an acquisitions […]

Christmas with Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Week 5

posted by Jana Riess

Merry Christmas! Our devotions from Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s God Is in the Manger: Reflections on Advent and Christmas have passed through the waiting and mystery of Advent to the joy of Christmas. Much of that joy, at least for me, comes […]

Advent and Christmas with Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Week 4

posted by Jana Riess

God becomes human. How weird is that? We are so accustomed to the sweet baby in the manger, the innocent and non-threatening infant. But according to Dietrich Bonhoeffer and others, there’s more going on here. Frederick Buechner once wrote that […]

From Holy Day to Holiday: A Q&A with Donald Heinz about Christmas

posted by Jana Riess

In his new book Christmas: Festival of Incarnation, Donald Heinz argues that for all its commercialism, Christmas is still best understood as Christianity’s key holy day. I’m so pleased to welcome him here for a Q&A. You can also watch […]

Advent and Christmas with Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Week 3

posted by Jana Riess

Redemption is not a theme we normally associate with Christmas, but with the heaviness of repentance and Lent. The cross is where Christians believe our sins were forgiven, so the Lenten and Easter seasons are the times we reflect on […]

Slowing Down: Five Ways to Reduce the Stress of Christmas

posted by Jana Riess

It’s Thursday, and I am now finished with my to-do list. The one for this past Monday. It’s probably true that with two jobs and a family and a writing career and a church calling, my life is busier than […]

Advent and Christmas with Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Week 2

posted by Jana Riess

I hope you’re having a quietly joyous Advent. Last week on Flunking Sainthood, our Bonhoeffer theme was waiting, a condition that Bonhoeffer knew all too well — waiting for the war to end, waiting to be released from prison, waiting […]

WJK Radio Podcast: The Pain of Miscarriage

posted by Jana Riess

I know I have blogged–okay, bragged–about Elise Erikson Barrett’s book before, but I wanted to provide a link to the most recent WJK Radio podcast in which she is interviewed about her new book, What Was Lost: A Christian Journey […]

Advent and Christmas with Dietrich Bonhoeffer: Week 1

posted by Jana Riess

I recently had the pleasure of editing a devotional of Dietrich Bonhoeffer‘s writings for Advent and Christmas. Culling together Bonhoeffer’s Christmas sermons, letters, and other writings for God Is in the Manger: Reflections on Advent and Christmas helped me to […]

The (HIV) Positive Pastor: A Q&A with Memoirist Shane Stanford

posted by Jana Riess

AIDS isn’t much on people’s radars anymore, at least not in the United States. Combination-therapy drugs have made what was once a death sentence–an HIV positive diagnosis–into a manageable, if debilitating, condition. But what’s it like to live with the […]

The Best New Intro to World Religions: Stephen Prothero’s “God Is Not One”

posted by Jana Riess

Stephen Prothero was everywhere last month as one of the principal talking heads on PBS’s interesting and balanced series God in America.  Hearing his comments and reading his newest book as part of a blogger roundtable for the Patheos book […]

Philip Yancey on Publishing, Speaking, and the “Psychosis” of the First Draft (Part Two)

posted by Jana Riess

In October Flunking Sainthood ran the first part of our two-part interview with Christian writer Philip Yancey, whose new book What Good is God? was published yesterday. This week we follow up with some discussion of his writing career in […]

“Every Damn Day”: Guest Blogger Elizabeth E. Evans on Finding Hope After Jon Stewart’s Rally

posted by Jana Riess

Friends, I’m in Atlanta for the AAR and so I wasn’t able to attend Saturday’s Rally to Restore Sanity. (My husband attended and sent me jealousy-inducing text messages from D.C.) In today’s post, guest blogger Elizabeth Eisenstadt Evans, who writes […]

What Good Is God, Anyway? A Q&A with Philip Yancey (Part One)

posted by Jana Riess

Last week I was privileged to have a long phone conversation with one of my favorite contemporary writers, Philip Yancey. Interviewing authors each Wednesday is easily my favorite part of blogging, and this opportunity was a real highlight. Philip Yancey’s […]

Does God Hate Clutter? Ellen Painter Dollar Used To Think So, But . . .

posted by Jana Riess

This week over at Episcopal Cafe, Ellen Painter Dollar (at left) has a great post on a question that plagues me perpetually: how much is too much? Why do I feel more virtuous today, when I hauled a bed frame […]

Harry Potter, Christian Hallows, and C.S. Lewis: A Q&A with Greg Garrett

posted by Jana Riess

I’ve been listening to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows again in preparation for the movie next month–which releases in 45 days, but who’s counting? In listening I have come once more to realize why it is one of my […]

“What Was Lost: A Christian Journey through Miscarriage”

posted by Jana Riess

I am kvelling today, flush with pleasure at the happy news that one of the books I edited has just been nominated for a 2011 Christianity Today book award in the Christian Living category. The book is called What Was […]

How Much Can We Know About God?: Blog Tour Review of Ken Howard’s New Book “Paradoxy”

posted by Jana Riess

Earlier this week on Flunking Sainthood, a fellow Mormon was offended by an offhand remark I had made about some General Authorities not appearing to read widely. I was not surprised by someone taking offense, which is a regular occurrence […]

Before You Attend Jon Stewart’s Rally, Read This from James Calvin Davis

posted by Jana Riess

If you’re like me, you’re cheering about the national rally that Jon Stewart is planning for October 30 in Washington, D.C. With all the fearmongering and hatred being spouted these days, we need Stewart’s “Rally to Restore Sanity” (as well […]

Secrets, Lies, & Porn in the Church: A Q&A with “Permission to Speak Freely” Author Anne Jackson

posted by Jana Riess

Christian women might be addicted to porn? Pastors can be sexual predators? Evangelical teens are cutting themselves? Such are the revelations in Anne Jackson’s newest book, Permission to Speak Freely: Essays and Art on Fear, Confession, and Grace. It’s a […]

Who Was Julian of Norwich? A Q&A with Author Amy Frykholm

posted by Jana Riess

The only thing I knew about Julian of Norwich before reading Amy Frykholm’s excellent new “contemplative biography” of her was that she was the saint who said “All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of […]

Why Are Jews Funnier Than Christians?

posted by Jana Riess

I’ve been reading The Big Jewish Book for Jews: Everything You Need to Know to Be a Really Jewish Jew. Written by Ellis Weiner and Barbara Davilman, who brought us the equally hilarious Yiddish with Dick and Jane, the book […]

7 Reasons Why Sharon Baker Wants to Raze Hell

posted by Jana Riess

Do you believe in hell? 59% of Americans do, including 92% of weekly churchgoers. If you do believe, what does hell look like for you? Sharon Baker, a professor of theology at Messiah College, found out she was going to […]

Elise Erikson Barrett on What Not to Say After a Miscarriage

posted by Jana Riess

Anyone who has ever had a miscarriage knows that well-meaning people, people who love you, will sometimes say things that they intend to make you feel better but actually have the opposite effect. I asked Elise Erikson Barrett, author of […]

Mormon Teens, Protestant Teens: A Review of Kenda Creasy Dean’s “Almost Christian”

posted by Jana Riess

Did you see this article in USA Today yesterday? The upshot is that Protestant teens are skipping church in record numbers. They rarely even come for the pizza anymore. This development didn’t come out of nowhere. Throughout the last decade, […]

Is the Bible Pro-Immigrant?: A Q&A with Ben Daniel about “Neighbor”

posted by Jana Riess

This month, Westminster John Knox is pleased to publish the new book Neighbor: Christian Encounters with “Illegal” Immigration. Author Ben Daniel sits down with Flunking Sainthood to discuss his book, the role of immigration in the Bible, and the new […]

New Testament Scholar Marcus Borg Tries His Hand at Fiction: A Review of “Putting Away Childish Things”

posted by Jana Riess

Marcus Borg opens his first novel, Putting Away Childish Things, with an admission: it’s going to be didactic. He sees it as a teaching novel, “the only kind of novel [he] can imagine writing.” He goes on to disarm the […]

Can Anne Rice Stay a Christian Outside the Catholic Church?

posted by Jana Riess

I’ve been a fan of Anne Rice‘s writing for many years: the vampire fiction, the overtly Catholic fiction about the life of Christ, and more recently, her beautiful memoir Called Out of Darkness, in which she chronicles her journey out […]

To Kill a Mockingbird: Guest Blogger Matt Litton on Religion & Women in Harper Lee’s Classic

posted by Jana Riess

Here at Flunking Sainthood we’re happy to give some time to author Matt Litton, a teacher here in my adopted hometown of Cincinnati. Matt looks at Harper Lee‘s modern classic To Kill a Mockingbird — celebrating its 50th anniversary this […]

Bonhoeffer for Today: A Q&A with Biographer Eric Metaxas

posted by Jana Riess

Flunking Sainthood is delighted to talk today with author Eric Metaxas, whose study of theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer sets a new standard for popular biography. It’s well-written! It’s fascinating! And it’s large enough to insulate your home! Eric, when Thomas Nelson […]

Why Do the Amish Love Mexican Food? And Other Amish Trivia

posted by Jana Riess

We’ve been way too serious here at Flunking Sainthood lately. And since no one knows how to have fun quite like the Amish, let’s spend some time with them. I have an enduring love affair with the Amish that started […]

Walls and Immigration Reform: Rev. Ben Daniel in the Huffington Post

posted by Jana Riess

The new Arizona immigration law is set to go into effect next week (July 29), and folks on both sides of the issue are busy marshaling their forces to either protest or implement it. Earlier this week, Arizona governor Jan […]

Should Moms of Young Kids Get to Skip Church Sometimes? Guest Blogger Ellen Painter Dollar Says Yes

posted by Jana Riess

Here at Flunking Sainthood we’re always open to people telling it how it is. Today we welcome guest truth-teller Ellen Painter Dollar, who blogs for Her.meneutics at Christianity Today, on those days when you just can’t quite rustle up the […]

Attendance is Down, But Giving is Up? Good and Bad News in Recent Research from the US Congregational Life Survey

posted by Jana Riess

Yeah, I admit it. I enjoy wonky sociology books about religion–how many adherents, where they live, what they believe, what they eat for breakfast. So I knew I’d be pretty interested in Cynthia Woolever and Deborah Bruce’s Field Guide to […]

Finding God (Again) After Losing Your Job: Guest Blogger Bob Fryling

posted by Jana Riess

I’m working in Nashvegas for most of this week, so Flunking Sainthood welcomes two guest bloggers (the other will be Carol Lynn Pearson on Saturday). Today we hear from my dear friend Bob Fryling, who has recently written an excellent […]

The Red, White & Blue Envelope, Please: Answers to Our July 4 Quiz

posted by Jana Riess

On Tuesday we interrupted this blog’s usual silliness to bring you an actual history quiz, based on a terrific book I’m editing: Was America Founded as a Christian Nation? by John Fea. The book will be out in February. If […]

Indomitable Iconoclast: Q&A with Stanley Hauerwas

posted by Jana Riess

A personal memoir from a theologian? Now, that’s not something you see very often. And not just any theologian. This is Stanley Hauerwas, a man that Time magazine lauded as “the best theologian in America.” I’ve got no argument with […]

July 4 Pop Quiz: How Much Do You Know about America’s Religious Roots?

posted by Jana Riess

Are you a Yankee Doodle Dandy? Take this 10-question quiz to find out! I’ll post the answers and some explanations on Saturday. (And yes, I know you’re just going to look up the answers on Google. Here at Flunking Sainthood […]

But Saul Used to Be Such a Nice Kid: This Week in the Twible (1 Samuel 9-14)

posted by Jana Riess

What the heck has happened to Saul? Remember how just a few chapters ago he was basically a nice guy, and maybe a little star-struck about suddenly becoming king? He was the guy that went out of his way to […]

Previous Posts

Another blog to enjoy!!!
Thank you for visiting Flunking Sainthood. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here is another blog you may also enjoy: Fellowship of Saints and Sinners Happy Reading!!!

posted 3:12:01pm Jul. 05, 2012 | read full post »

Thank You, Flunking Sainthood Readers!
OK, I admit it. I have a Google Alert on the title Flunking Sainthood, so that the search engine lets me know when there are new reviews or discussions about the book. In the last few weeks it has been exciting -- and humbling -- to see the many different kinds of people who are reading and talking

posted 12:41:10pm Jan. 25, 2012 | read full post »

NYC Conference on Mormonism & American Politics, February 3-4
"First Mitt won Iowa, then he lost Iowa? That's a classic Romney flip-flop." --Stephen Colbert     Working with the theory that there hasn't been nearly enough attention to Mormonism and politics this year, what with it being in the news every single day and all, Randy Balmer and I

posted 11:09:19am Jan. 23, 2012 | read full post »

Writing Retreat
Friends, I will be offline until January 23 for a writing retreat. I'm bringing my computer, but the place where I am going doesn't have email access

posted 8:47:20pm Jan. 14, 2012 | read full post »

Fun with the Book of Lamentations
Actually, no. That title was just a teaser. There really aren't any fun moments in the Book of

posted 11:33:13am Jan. 13, 2012 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.