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Religion Rebounders
January 10, 2020
Some people don't want much or anything to do with the religion of their childhood ... and then go all in. First broadcast November 2019.
Sarah Hurwitz. Image courtesy of Sarah Hurwitz
Here All Along January 10, 2020
Sarah Hurwitz, a White House speechwriter for all eight years of the Obama administration, tells the story of her rebound to Judaism in her new book, “Here All Along: Finding Meaning, Spirituality, and A Deeper Connection to Life in Judaism (After Finally Choosing to Look There) In the first part of our conversation with Hurwitz, she talks about her upbringing, her decision to write for Michelle instead of Barack Obama, and how she educated herself in her faith.

We continue our conversation with Sarah Hurwitz with her thoughts on the limits of picking and choosing from a smorgasbord of faiths and the rewards of delving deeply into one. She talks about the value of religious institutions, despite their flaws. And she explains why, as she deepened her spirituality, she decided to embrace the religion in which she was raised as opposed to another. Hurwitz also offers advice for politicians who want to speak about their faith. There are avoidable pitfalls, she says. But done well, it can help voters better understand and appreciate a candidate.

Sarah Hurwitz, former chief speechwriter for Michelle Obama and author of “Here All Along: Finding Meaning, Spirituality, and A Deeper Connection to Life in Judaism (After Finally Choosing to Look There)"

Sarah Hurwitz is pictured speaking with First Lady Michelle Obama aboard a flight from Joint Base Andrews.
Sarah Hurwitz speaking with Michelle Obama
Chuck Kennedy/The White House

Cover of Sarah Hurwitz's book "Here All Along"

Here All Along
Penguin Random House
Bryan Mealer
A War Correspondent Reclaims God January 10, 2020
Bryan Mealer was raised in a West Texas church that espoused faith healing and the prosperity gospel but didn’t reach out to the poor. He disavowed Christianity as a teenager and further confirmed his disbelief during his years as a reporter covering the war in the Congo. Mealer, now the father of three and a student at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, explains how he regained faith, and what he’s planning to do with a master of divinity.

Bryan Mealer, journalist and master of divinity candidate at Union Theological Seminary

Journalist Bryan Mealer is pictured with UN Peackeeping Force Col. Tyhalisi
Bryan Mealer, left, with a UN peacekeeper
covering the conflict in eastern Congo
Courtesy Bryan Mealer