Book Review: Churched

08Jan10

Ever since I heard about this book through my many random Internet stumbling upons, I have wanted to read it. Unfortunately, Christmas was approaching, and we were/are poor, so I put off buying it and put it on the Christmas list. My loving, wonderful parents bought it for me. I put down Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, which I was slugging through, to read this instead. I’m not lying, I finished Churched within a couple of days. I couldn’t put it down, and it was everything I was hoping it would be.

For someone who lives for good satire and humor, this book was a breath of fresh air, especially when it comes to humorously looking at Christian culture and church. I went to a Southern Baptist university and grew up in a general Baptist tradition, although my parents were never that hardcore denomination loyalists like some of the people author Matthew Paul Turner describes, so I found I could relate to this book, like I was in on the inside joke. This praise is also the root of my only criticism of the book. I’m not sure anyone outside of the Protestant faith could enjoy it as much as someone who has been on the inside. Maybe I’m wrong, or maybe that doesn’t matter because maybe its not really meant for anyone except people who have been on the inside. If that’s true then my one criticism is a moot point.

When I read memoirs, I often get self-conscious of the other real people in the book who the author still has to deal with on a regular basis. I wonder how their families and friends feel about them revealing all this personal information, and especially in a book like Churched where there is judgement and potential for harsh judgement on those people. I felt that way again at the beginning of this book while reading Turner’s account of how his parents raised him in the church, but my fears were soothed because his tone towards his parents was much more loving/understanding/respectful than it could have been for a book poking fun at church and the culture that comes with it.

If you want a good laugh and a quick read, buy this book and take a weekend to read it. You will laugh so hard, and there will be times when your jaw hits the floor in shock. This book was exactly what I needed to read right now. It’s good to know there are others out there who follow Jesus but struggle with a relationship with church.

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4 Responses to “Book Review: Churched”

  1. Thanks for posting this!
    I remember you saying something about it a while ago… I look forward to reading it now 😀 hopefully Half Priced Books will have a copy as we are poor too 😛

  2. Sadly, my parents said it was hard to find. The only store they could find it in was a Christian bookstore.

  3. 3 mpt

    Thanks so much for this review. Very kind. And much appreciated. So glad it lived up to your expectations.

    Matthew


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