Back in 2006 I came across a fascinating blog: the author was an atheist who was in the midst of exploring theism, then Christianity, then Catholicism, before joining the Church (with her husband) in 2007. Throughout the process, Jennifer Fulwiler used her blog as a combination journal/forum, setting forth the questions she had and inviting responses.
Last month, her memoirs were published under the title Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It. Shortly after the book was published my friend Renee read the book and then wrote a review, which I'm posting below. Take a gander and consider picking up a copy of the book yourself.
Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It
A Review by Renee Lenerville Leach
Very simply, “Something Other Than God” by Jennifer Fulwiler is a conversion story. However, what makes this book special is the journey that takes Jennifer from being a religion hating atheist to a devout Catholic. Jennifer was raised in an atheist home, had achieved monetary and career success at a young age and yet, a part of her always wondered “is this it?” Through a series of major life events, Jennifer began to realize that she doesn’t have an answer for the big questions in life, questions such as “what is the purpose of this life”, “what happens to us when we die”, “is there an ever loving, all good Deity.” Her quest for answers - and the truth - led her to create a blog on the internet where she found people who were willing to answer her questions in a logical, non-confrontational manner. She later discovered that those individuals that were providing the best answers and could provide documentation to prove their point of view were….. Catholic.
What struck me most about Jennifer’s story is that her mother was raised Catholic. Her Catholic grandparents, whom she never knew, had insisted that Jennifer be baptised Catholic when she was six months old. If there was ever a doubt in my mind of the real power contained in the Sacrament of Baptism, Jennifer’s story confirmed for me in a very real way that this beautiful sacrament provides assistance to us in ways we cannot imagine, that we are sealed with the sign of belonging to Christ, an indelible mark on our soul that not even a life of unrepentant sin can wipe away. Through the Sacraments we receive, there are powerful, unseen forces at work in our lives every single day.
Jennifer’s conversion didn’t take place over night, and her journey was filled with difficulty and uncertainty. She fought the process the entire way, desperately trying not to believe. She discovered that God is loving and patient and is waiting to give us peace when we finally find our way home.
Jennifer has written a book that clearly and concisely presents the arguments against Christianity and the Catholic faith, and then beautifully and thoughtfully explains why the answers and the Truth can be found within the Church.
If you are looking for a book to help you find answers on your journey of faith, but do not want to slug through books on theology, this is a must read. If you are looking for an uplifting book to hang out with over the summer while sitting on a beach or under a tree, this is a must read. Wherever you are on your faith journey… this is a must read.