A Restless Faith:Leaving Fundamentalism In A Quest for God – Paperbackby: Keith Mascord
A Restless Faith tells the story of Keith’s gradual shedding of fundamentalist assumptions, while retaining and strengthening his still robust Christian faith.
Keith’s first book, A Restless Faith, tells the story of his journey out of fundamentalism and into a more restful and intellectually satisfying faith. Auto-biography is interwoven with theology, philosophy and hermeneutics as the author recounts the story of his happy nurturing in North American fundamentalism, of later positive encounters with evangelical Anglicanism in Sydney, Australia, and of his relentless questioning of earlier-held assumptions. This book charts a way forward for people who feel they must choose between fundamentalism and jettisoning their faith altogether.
What some have said about A Restless Faith:
A journey out of fundamentalism with a difference … a book to bring comfort and hope to those walking a similar path – Professor Marion Maddox
The best critical analysis of Sydney Anglican evangelicalism that I know … bringing together within the twists and turns of biography the key elements of hermeneutics, theology and power – Rev. Dr Colin Dundon
A courageous book by a brave man. I highly commend it – Dr Muriel Porter
A personal cry for a more gracious Church – Right Reverend Stuart P Robinson
This is a very important book. It brings together within the twists and turns of biography the key elements of hermeneutics, theology and power. All of us in religious institutions or groups need to face the key issues in this book; the way in which fear corrupts the use of power and authority and turns the interpretation of scripture and theological reflection into and ideology of coercion, intimidation and control.
Rev. Dr Colin Dundon Former Director and presently lecturer St Mark's National Theological Centre.
A Restless Faith tells the story of a journey out of fundamentalism with a difference. So many such books depict personal despair and existential agony. This one takes us into the warm and generous lifeworld of a man who, from his youth, has loved a theological stoush as much as a good game of touch rugby. We follow Keith's steps as he loses his faith in fundamentalism's answers, but never his love for the people who raised him in its traditions. This is a book to bring comfort and hope to those walking a similar path.
Marion Maddox, CORE Professor and ARC Future Fellow, Macquarie University, Sydney; author of ‘God Under Howard: The Rise of the Religious Right in Australian Politics’.
I fully commend Rev. Dr Keith Mascord’s book. For me as an Aboriginal theologian, it raised still-unanswered questions about the impact of Christianity’s arrival on this continent, and of the need for a hermeneutic connected to this land, its peoples, and their stories. My hope is that my people will join, and not be excluded from, the quest for God and for better understandings that Dr Mascord articulates in his highly readable autobiography.
Pastor Ray Minniecon, Aboriginal Community Chaplain, Redfern
Keith is more interested in asking the right questions, than in answering them. The book is more biography than polemic, and is the better for it. It is a personal cry for a more gracious Church: a community of faith that seeks to open up proper dialogue rather than shutting down an honest search for the truth.
Right Reverend Stuart P. Robinson, Bishop, Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn, Australia
The road from Certainty to Disbelief by way of Doubt is well travelled and recorded. A less travelled road is from Certainty to Faith, also by way of Doubt. Keith Mascord’s intelligent and personal account of this difficult journey needs to be read by those who experience doubt, but fear its consequences.
Michael Horsburgh, AM, Honorary Associate Professor, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney.
This is a wonderful book that should be read by anyone interested in the puzzle of being human and being Christian. It is a generously told tale of one man’s pilgrimage from fundamentalism to a richer Christian vision by way of an encounter with a rigid evangelical Anglicanism. Along the way it is also a telling account of the way in which institutional religion can be corrupted by power.
Rev. Dr Bruce Kaye, Foundation Editor of the Journal of Anglican Studies and formerly General Secretary of the Anglican Church of Australia
I warmly recommend Keith Mascord's book, especially to any whose journey has been out of fundamentalism, and also to those who wish to understand some of the thinking of the leadership of the Sydney Anglican Diocese over the years.
Rev. Dr Susan Emeleus Women's Interfaith Network
A Restless Faith is autobiography, but is also history of religion, sociology and ethnography.It reveals from an insider's perspective what has happened to Sydney Anglicanism, and where that culture is at the present moment. Sydney Anglicanism, as one learns in the book, is unlike most other mainstream Christian denominations. In sociological terminology, while Melbourne Anglicanism might be a 'church', Sydney Anglicanism is more like a 'sect', and, in certain respects, a 'cult'. That requires explanation and justification, and Keith provides them. This will be a challenging book for many readers, particularly Sydney Anglican insiders. For me, the outsider, it was of tremendous historical and religious interest. I recognised the moments of exhilaration and the moments of pain in Keith's life to this point. They are common to many religious journeys. In short, for insiders and outsiders there is a wealth of information here.
Robert Crotty, Emeritus Professor of Religion and Education, University of South Australia, author of Three Revolutions: Three Drastic Changes in Interpreting the Bible, Hindmarsh, SA, ATF Theology, 2012.
Although this memoir records Keith’s sad disillusionment with the Diocese to which he gave so much of his energies as priest and teacher, his Christian faith emerges as strong, clear and compelling. This is a courageous book by a brave man. I highly commend it.
Dr Muriel Porter, Melbourne journalist and religion commentator