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Here I Stand: My Struggle for a Christianity of Integrity, Love, and Equality
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Here I Stand: My Struggle for a Christianity of Integrity, Love, and Equality

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  188 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
The legendary Episcopal Bishop tells of his lifelong struggle to champion an authentic christianity based on love, not hatred.
Paperback, 480 pages
Published April 3rd 2001 by HarperOne (first published 2001)
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Oct 24, 2013 Walter rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Disclaimer: I'm a Spong fan and perhaps even a Spongian in my personal theology, so I am predisposed to like (almost) anything that the Bishop writes ... and this biography is no exception. It's an honest look at his life - far more candid than many I have read for such a public figure - and I found it to be a page-turner, especially those chapters that relate his experience as a bishop of the Episcopal Church. I have read many of his books and heard him speak many times, but I will admit to ...more
Aug 12, 2012 Leo rated it it was amazing
The best book I know of for any rational person grappling with how to resolve reason and faith, particularly of a Christian nature. Spong has been much maligned by many of his contemporaries, but that's because he pushes the limits of Christian thought. His ideas have made it possible for me to continue to believe--albeit in a very different manner than the simplistic way I did as a child. His blends most of this theological insights with stories of his own life as a Christian coming to maturity ...more
Sep 13, 2010 Carly rated it liked it
An interesting look at an American Episcopalian bishop's life, the US wing of Anglicanism. I have heard John Shelby Spong speaking and he is charasmatic and impressive. I read 'Here I Stand' without having read any other of his books so I come his autobiography either cold or fresh, depending on how you look at it.

The section dealing with Spong's southern childhood is lovely; his earnest, troubled existence is recorded with affection and some humour.

I was less enamoured of the larger part of th
May 31, 2014 Gwen rated it liked it
Shelves: biography-memoir
Much less theology than I was expecting, honestly--I was hoping for more. (But I guess that's what the rest of Spong's books are for!) I could have done without the chapters after chapters on Episcopalian bureaucracy and inside baseball, although the bureaucracy aspect of Spong's work is critical to understanding how he didn't always fit in with the status quo. (But could we have trimmed the minutiae down a bit?)

While this book dipped too far and too often into self-aggrandizement, I was amazed
May 27, 2012 Shishir rated it liked it
Meaning and origin of life
Life and Life Sciences examined with integrity (genetics and nurture)
Earth existence and formation explained well in Science
Luck and chance formed life (natural selection - evolution)
Life after death NOT essential
This life is enough!!

Older you get the better you are able to experience life
Fascinating to be alive
Live life fully wring every moment out of life.

This life is everything – do not sell people into looking forward to a better life afterlife

What comes after dy
Nov 11, 2010 Joe rated it it was amazing
Bishop Spong is just plain awesome. He has been one of the leading voices in US Christianity for the full inclusion of LGBTQ individuals in the life of the church, against fundamentalism interpretations of the bible and, lately, for a total rethinking of Christianity away from theism. I didn't know much about his history, and this was a neat look at how he went from a young man in North Carolina to a radical bishop in Newark. I particularly enjoyed reading about how this theological thinking ...more
Oct 13, 2012 Katherine rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Spong's autobiography is simultaneously a view of one man's spiritual journey and an insider's look at the culture wars that have gripped America's religious life over the last half century or so. I was drawn to this book because of Spong's other writing and came to appreciate more deeply the crucible in which those works were formed - as he suggests with his subtitle, the challenge of maintaining a church life without sacrificing one's sense of integrity, love and commitment to equality (which ...more
Ellen Johnson
May 12, 2014 Ellen Johnson rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir
Bishop James Spong is a very courageous man who loves the church but who does not believe we can keep asserting supernatural happenings in the Bible are true anymore, except as metaphor. This has lots of details about the church hierarchy that only Episcopal clergy would enjoy. I would highly recommend "Why Christianity Must Change or Die" for an intro to his thought. I enjoyed the frank discussions of civil rights era.
May 10, 2008 Zac rated it it was amazing
A friend of mine introduced me to this author who is also a Episcopal Bishop. It was intresting read; he has some very challenging ideas in the way we think of God, the Church and today's most pressing social issues. A good read for anyone praying that there is more to religion than just what we currently have.
Jan 30, 2016 Craig rated it it was amazing
This books is my favorite from Bishop Spong. He writes about his early life and life as an Episcopal priest. Thought as controversial Bishop Spong never sought about to be, but he's stance for racial justice, women rights and LGBT rights upset many even within his own church.
Sep 21, 2010 Mary rated it liked it
Enjoyed learning about his childhood and young adulthood. Too much detail given about how he became a bishop which wasn't interesting to me. Read the first half of the book closely and skimmed the second half.
Frank Ogden
Jun 12, 2016 Frank Ogden rated it liked it
A very detailed and long autobiography. One needs endurance to get through this lengthy personal history.
Barbara Kramer
Sep 18, 2009 Barbara Kramer rated it really liked it
Bishop Spong is an oustanding voice in religious thought for our time. This book gives significant insight into the man and what he stands for.
Linda Mulford
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Kyle Critchett rated it it was amazing
Mar 11, 2013
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Apr 22, 2007
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Jan 02, 2016
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John Shelby Spong was the Episcopal bishop of Newark before his retirement in 2000. As a leading spokesperson for an open, scholarly, and progressive Christianity, Bishop Spong has taught at Harvard and at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. He has also lectured at universities, conference centers, and churches in North America, Europe, Asia, and the South Pacific. His books ...more
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