A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Bob Thompson graduated from Berkeley Baptist Divinity School (Graduate Theological Union) and was ordained an American Baptist minister in 1973. He has served American Baptist Churches in Kansas, Ohio, and for the past 30 years as Senior Minister of the Lake Street Church in Evanston, Illinois.
During the 1980's he became an activist pastor focusing on issues such as homelessness, racial reconciliation and advocacy for LGBT rights. In the 1990's he became disillusioned with the spiritual constraints of mainstream American Protestantism and embarked on an exploration of several Eastern spiritual traditions and the Christian mystics. This vision led him to accept the role of Chair of the Parliament of the World's Religions from 1999-2004.
Over the years he has contributed articles to periodicals including The Christian Century, The Chicago Tribune, Sound Vision, and others. He is the author of "A Voluptuous God: A Christian Heretic Speaks," and a contributor to the book for preachers, "Feasting On the Word."
- Lauren Nelson