Sister Helen Prejean: The Face of Love

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My name is Kate Bowler.
I’m a Duke professor, author and incurable optimist.

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We are both pretty proud of something today. I wrote a piece for the @nytimes about my research about celebrity Christian women. He has mastered this yellow transformer. We were both thrilled.
I learned so much from these women about making the most of what you are given. Truly. Most were never theologically encouraged to be in leadership and yet there they are. Soaring. There are great dangers in the spiritual marketplace and also some beautiful lessons. Thanks so much to the women I interviewed. I could never have done this without you. (I’m looking at you @sandrawstanley, @sarcasticlutheran, @sarahbessey, @anniefdowns, @christinecaine, and so many others). LINK IN PROFILE.
Happy Canadian Thanksgiving! 🇨🇦 Especially Canadian moments included:
1. Listening exclusively to Céline Dion.
2. Talking about the blizzard in Winnipeg.
3. Plaid/Canadian Tuxedos/tank tops that read “Sorrey”
4. Maple syrup as constant glaze
5. Butterscotch peanut butter squares
BONUS MENNONITE POINTS to anyone who can spot the culinary reason we had to research “how to extinguish a grease fire”
So thankful for a year filled with new reasons to treasure this beautiful, absurd existence. Sending you all love and endless gratitude.
I have a few spiritual heroes, those giants of faith who pave roads before us. One of them is Sister Helen Prejean.
@helenprejean didn't know what she was getting into when she became pen pals with an inmate on death row, a story told in the movie, Dead Man Walking. Now, she's a fierce advocate against the death penalty.
On this week's episode of #EverythingHappens, I speak with Sister Helen about finding purpose, something I'm SO HUNGRY FOR. She describes it so beautifully... as an unfolding discovery that often begins with gentle nudges and a zillion small moments of "yes." I think you're really going to love this one.
Listen in or read the full transcript through the link in my profile.
Reynolds Industries Theater at Duke University
Pastors are my favorite. They show up on our very worst days, anoint our foreheads until we have cross shaped acne, and take the brunt of all our theological angst. @dukedivinity is hosting their annual Pastor’s School this week. And today Krista Tippett (@onbeing) and I had a conversation on the future of the church, the gift of theological education, and how love might just save us all. She is a force for meaning and beauty and I’m so grateful to know her.
Zach’s love of snakes teaches me a lot about love in general. Real love is GENTLE. EVEN MORE GENTLE THAN THAT. And no. The things we love can’t live in our pockets. Their value exists outside of how much WE LOVE THEM. Seriously. Buddy. You can’t take that inside.
As you now know, my academic book, The Preacher’s Wife, just released! It is a history of women who lead churches and ministries with sometimes non-traditional authority. As a celebration, I’ve chosen this month’s #EverythingHappens book club pick from one of those voices who has led the church-- and certainly my spiritual life: Barbara Brown Taylor.

Together, we’ll read her beautiful spiritual memoir, Leaving Church. She is a professor, bestselling writer, and an ordained Episcopal priest. This is her story of serving a large church in a big city, moving to a small country church, and finally leaving congregational leadership all together.
We'll explore compassion fatigue, spiritual burnout, and the gifts of leadership in the church and in the world. If you’ve ever wrestled with finding and losing faith, I think you’re going to love this book. I hope you'll join us in reading along.