Like most of us, Lauren Winner wants something to believe in. The child of a reform Jewish father and a lapsed Southern Baptist mother, she chose to become an Orthodox Jew. But as she faithfully observes the Sabbath rituals and studies Jewish laws, she finds herself increasingly drawn to Christianity. Taking a courageous step, she leaves behind what she loves and converts. Now the even harder part: How does one reinvent a religious self? How does one embrace the new without abandoning the old? How does a convert become spiritually whole. In GIRL MEETS GOD, this appealingly honest young woman takes us through a year in her search for a religious identity. Despite her conversion, she finds that her world is still shaped by her Jewish experiences. Even as she rejoices in the holy days of the Christian calendar, she mourns the Jewish rituals she still holds dear. Attempting to reconcile the two sides of her religious self, Winner applies the lessons of Judaism to the teachings of the New Testament, hosts a Christian seder, and struggles to fit her Orthodox friends into her new religious life. Ultimately she learns that faith takes practice and belief is an ongoing challenge. Like Anne Lamott's, Winner's journey to Christendom is bumpy, but it is the rocky path itself that makes her a perfect guide to exploring spirituality in today's complicated world. Her engaging approach to religion in the twenty-first century is illuminating, thought-provoking, and most certainly controversial.… (more)
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The book is a well written memoir of her teenage conversion to orthodox Judaism and then her college conversion to Anglican Christianity. She weaves her story together from disparate events, conversations, and books. Part of what I enjoyed about "Girl Meets God" is the way books almost become a character in her life.
However, as a I read it, and now looking book, I wonder how much of her
This is not a book by some person whose closest connection to prayer is when they dutifully bow their head in church on Sunday; but by someone who genuinely seeks to lead a spiritual life.
Thanks, Lauren, for inspiring me, and making me think.
The first half of the memoir follows a sort of path of her faith journey from reformed Jew to Orthodox Jew to Episcopal Christian. The second half or so is more of a collection of memoir thoughts and stories related to her faith. I really enjoyed the book overall.