When Sarah Pulliam Bailey writes a thoughtful, nuanced story on religion, it’s not exactly a man-bites-dog scenario.
That’s what she almost always does, after all.
But here at GetReligion, we like to highlight positive achievements in religion news coverage (as well as the negative). So I can’t resist noting Bailey’s very interesting Washington Post piece today on the complicated faith of New York Times op-ed columnist David Brooks.
Like a lot of the best religion stories, this one starts with a question.
“So what is David Brooks' faith?” Bailey commented in a public Facebook post. “I've heard that question over and over for the past few years. Here, I try to explain.”
Suffice it to say that Brooks’ faith is not an easy thing to explain, and that makes the former GetReligion contributor’s story all the more compelling.
The opening paragraphs:
In the world of national columnists, David Brooks is a star. But in the last few years, the New York Times writer and author has whipped up fascination among a certain subset of readers for a specific, gossipy reason: They wonder if the Jewish writer has become a Christian.
In his bestselling new book, “The Second Mountain: The Quest for the Moral Life,” Brooks, 57, one of the most prominent columnists in the country, traces his spiritual journey alongside his relationship with his second wife, his former assistant who is 23 years his junior and attended Wheaton College, an elite evangelical school.
“I really do feel more Jewish than ever before,” he said in a recent interview. “It felt like more deepening of faith, instead of switching from one thing to another.”
He has no plans to leave Judaism, he writes, calling himself “a wandering Jew and a very confused Christian.”