The Nones Are Alright

CODE: 978-1-62698-157-7


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Almost a third of American Millennials (not to mention their Gen-X elders) have chosen to live a life free from institutional religion. Many of those who do remain in the denominations and faith expressions in which they were raised tend to practice their faith in ways rather more syncretic and casual than previous generations. But beyond the surprising and puzzling statistics, don’t these “seekers” and “nones” have their own stories to tell?

Kaya Oakes, herself a “revert” to the Catholic faith, doesn’t just write from the perspective of her own encounters with faith and its absence, but also introduces the reader to a broad range of voices and experiences, interviewing  dozens of young Americans on how and why they practice (or don’t practice) their faith. She also explores specifically how a Catholic generation of young seekers is experiencing, and changing, the Catholic Church in the United States. “The future of faith,” she concludes, “remains a mystery. But isn’t faith also a mystery?”

Kaya Oakes is author of Radical Reinvention: An Unlikely Return to the Catholic Church (Counterpoint, 2012), Slanted and Enchanted: The Evolution of Indie Culture (Holt, 2009), and Telegraph (Pavement- Saw, 2007), She teaches writing at the University of California, Berkeley.

Book Details

The Nones Are Alright
A New Generation of Believers, Seekers, and Those in Between
Kaya Oakes

Oakes hits the perfect tone of humor and humility to make The Nones Are Alright an important document of spiritual witness. She profiles believers and unbelievers with a comprehensive, sympathetic approach.

In The Nones are Alright accomplished journalist, writer, and Catholic revert/None/agnostic Kaya Oakes leans close to listen to doubters, reverts, agnostics -- all the people slipping through the cracks in the institutional walls -- as these people tell stories of their efforts to build communities of faith, of living in-between traditions, and of the long struggle to articulate (and perhaps believe in) the mystery called God. What she hears both comforts and inspires, disturbs and challenges. But, as Pope Francis said in Tel Aviv, "the walls which divide us can be broken down only if we are prepared to listen and learn from one another." This is what Oakes herself has, quite provocatively, done.

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