The publication date for The Interfaith Family Journal is less than a month away!
On March 15th, you can hold in your hands an interactive book designed to support interfaith families including Atheists, Buddhists, Christians, Daoists, Ethiopian Orthodox…the whole alphabet of religions and worldviews.
The Journal draws on decades of personal experience, surveys of hundreds of interfaith family members, years of facilitating workshops and coaching couples around the world, and conversations with all of you in person and online. Interfaith families helped to test drive the manuscript, spending hours working through the questions and exercises. Your feedback helped create a more perfect Journal. And your first reactions were humbling:
- caused me to think deeply about why I think something or why a certain tradition is important to me
- allowed self-reflection, helped us focus on issues in manageable segments, and encouraged us to really listen to each other’s viewpoint
- helped us understand how we envision expressing our faiths to both ourselves and each other
- invited us to have a conversation instead of leading us to choose a side.
- had the feel of an unbiased, safe, non-judgmental couples’ counseling workshop
The test drivers thought the questions and exercises in the Journal were…
- very helpful in determining what parts of our religious background are spiritually based vs culturally based, which was invaluable for us
- a good mix of practical and deep
- helpful because they covered so much ground and approached issues from a number of angles
- a great tool for periodically checking in on growth or development in the course of the interfaith relationship (and especially during times of change, such as welcoming a child)
Different test drivers found different parts of the Journal particularly valuable, whether it was the interactive questions at the start of each chapter, the framework for talking about celebrations of life and death, the exercises designed to engage with extended family, or the creative family activities at the end of each chapter.
- Something about answering a high number of questions in relatively quick succession felt very productive.
- The Journal led to us calling our parents and grandparents to talk about their religious lives growing up. It was quite fascinating
- We had never talked about death as it pertains to our religions. This section opened us up to that conversation for the first time.
- We loved the creative sections. We were huge fans of the religions ancestry tree exercise. That is one that we plan on doing again when our children are old enough to participate.
This is the moment to pre-order copies for yourself and your interfaith family members, and to let friends and family know about the book by sending them a link to this page. My goal with this book has always been to help as many interfaith families as I can, around the country and the world, and I need your help to reach them.
Journalist Susan Katz Miller is an interfaith families speaker, consultant, and coach, and author of Being Both: Embracing Two Religions in One Interfaith Family (2015), and The Interfaith Family Journal (forthcoming in 2019). Follow her on twitter @susankatzmiller.