I’m sure a lot of people will get a lot out of Nadia Bolz-Weber’s memoir Accidental Saints, but I’m not one of them.
Reverand Nadia Bolz-Weber doesn’t look like your typical Lutheran Pastor. Rocking tattoo sleeves and a foul mouth, she’s a new type of preacher, the type to welcome those who have normally been turned away by the religious establishment. Her church is founded on the principle that humans are going to fuck up (so edgy with the swearing!) but that a good heart is what matters to God the most.
This book gave me flashbacks to the speakers I had to listen to in Catholic school. Every once in a while, the principle would get nervous that Christianity just wasn’t hip enough and hire some 26-year-old with a mushroom haircut and an acoustic guitar who just wanted to talk to us, man, about the best friend a sophomore could ever have…Jesus Christ. He doesn’t care about your SAT grades, man. He cares about your soul. Then he would try to sell us his CDs.
Bolz-Weber’s book is about her church and the revolutionary ideals it espouses (some examples: gay people are people! Assholes are tough to deal with, but we have to be nice to them. I’m hanging out with sinners JUST LIKE JESUS HOW COOL AM I). I concede that most churches (including the one I was raised in) do a terrible job of welcoming the people Jesus would probably want them to welcome, but that doesn’t mean her church is original.
I picked up the book because I was promised it was funny. A former comedian becomes a pastor? That’s weird enough to pique my interest. But in the immortal words of my man Josh “Lemon” Lyman, she “forgot the funny.”
Most of her jokes are weird, not-quite self-deprecating digs at her own originality. Look at these crazy tattoos LOLAMIRIGHT? It sort of turns into humble-bragging. And if I want to listen to people pretend they’re not impressed with themselves, I can close my book and interact with humanity.
If you like religious books, or you’re thinking about switching over to Lutheranism, then pick up Accidental Saints. The rest of you should give it a miss. This book is guilty of a mortal sin-being boring.