I grew up in a Reform Jewish home. From a young age, I had an interest in saints. This led to a fascination with the Incarnation, God in the flesh. In time, I wanted to know the God that moved my favorite saints to abandon their wealth and, at times, their lives.
I converted to Christianity in college. Following graduation, I attended seminary, where a faith crisis caused me to drop out. That crisis worsened when my father was dying of cancer.
I grappled with hard questions I never let myself contemplate before. What kind of God punishes people for having “wrong” theology? How can that God be considered loving?
Meanwhile, I thought I was done with my Jewish identity. But it would come up in unexpected situations, such as at the doctor’s office, filling out new patient forms that would ask if I had any Ashkenazi heritage. I still felt lonely at Christmas, and missed candle lighting on Shabbat.
Judaism was still part of me…somehow. But while it’s no longer my chosen religion, it still has much to offer me — particularly when it comes to dealing with questions and doubts. Jewish tradition sees wrestling with uncertainty as acts of faith rather than rebellion.
In order to remain a Christian, I needed to find a church home that celebrated this “wrestling” in the same way…a church that is comfortable with a bit of mystery. I knew after a few Sunday visits that the Anglican-Episcopal church was my new spiritual home.
Read more about this journey in my memoir, Confessions of a Prodigal Daughter.
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