New York Times bestselling author Reverend Nadia Bolz-Weber has been called “a pastor for America’s outsiders” (BBC). She will be the first to attest that she doesn’t look like most people’s idea of a pastor, but the community of faith she founded in Denver, Colorado—House for All Sinners and Saints—is a haven for a diverse community seeking affirmation and acceptance. Krista Tippett, who interviewed Bolz-Weber for her public radio show On Being, described House for All Sinners and Saints this way: “These days, convicted felons and elected officials join teenagers with pink hair at this church and others like it—redefining what church is—and with a deep reverence for tradition.”
But Bolz-Weber’s gospel is not just for spiritual seekers. In a time when institutions of every kind—governments, corporations, universities, churches—are struggling to exert influence and maintain relevance, her House for All Sinners and Saints continues to thrive, especially among Millennials. In her books and talks, she makes the deeply felt argument that honesty and human connection are key to creating and sustaining community.
In the New York Times bestselling memoir Pastrix: The Cranky, Beautiful Faith of a Sinner & Saint, Bolz-Weber “takes readers on the engaging and accessible journey” (Booklist) from her roots as a hard-drinking standup comic to an ordained Lutheran pastor. The book earned raves from everyone from the lead singer of the Violent Femmes to the Presiding Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, who said, “Pastor Nadia Bolz-Weber speaks the truth of our humanity that we too often want to deny.”
“This is an astonishing book… contagious, honest, captivating… a rare gift…. I realize that I’m gushing, but that’s what you do when a book inspires and moves and touches you like this one does.”
―Rob Bell, author of What We Talk About When We Talk About God and Love Wins
Bolz-Weber continues to explore the sometimes hilarious and often messy intersections of faith and humanity in her most recent memoir, Accidental Saints: Finding God in All the Wrong People, also a New York Times bestseller. From a felonious bishop to an agnostic who can’t get enough of church, Accidental Saints introduces us to people who set our teeth on edge—but who just might bring us closer to God.
Recently, she has been offering life-changing advice in her video series Have a Little Faith, from the MAKERS: Women Who Make America documentary series. With titles like “Forgive Assholes,” “Separating Self from Selfie,” and “Welcome to the Apocalypse,” her take remains consistently frank, funny, and irreverent.
In her latest book, The New York Times bestseller Shameless: A Case for Not Feeling Bad About Feeling Good (About Sex), Bolz-Weber reclaims the conversation around sexuality, shame, and desire for a new generation of believers. Drawing on her own experiences and those of her parishioners, she reexamines the church’s teachings on patriarchy, gender, and sexuality with a refreshing combination of candor and hope. Shameless offers no simple amendments or polite compromises but with her trademark vulnerability, humor, and honesty Bolz-Weber dispenses grace, liberation, and healing to those wounded by shaming sexual messages in religion.
Her podcast, The Confessional with Nadia Bolz-Weber, a partnership with PRX and The Moth. Bringing together stories from diverse walks of life, The Confessional celebrates human transformation by normalizing conversations about their failings. As she puts it, “The Confessional is a place where other people’s stories can be a road map to freedom from our own shame.”
Most recently, she launched The Chapel, a subscriber-based social network “where we can meet each other, pray together, develop connections, and have some great conversations (and all without a tech-giant selling our personal data or interrupting us with obnoxious ads).” Described as “an experimental gathering of spiritual misfits”, The Chapel aims to build an online community around grace and acceptance. She has also built community through the newsletter, The Corners. As she says, “I love the corners. I always have. It is where I will always choose to sit, because I love outcasts, queers and the girls who talk too loud.… I love sober drunks, single dads, sex workers and the guy who lost a leg in the war. These are my people.”
Bolz-Weber has been featured in The Washington Post, The New Yorker, NPR’s Morning Edition, Fresh Air, and on CNN and the BBC World Service. In 2017, she won the coveted Audience Award at the Nantucket Project. Her first book, Salvation on the Small Screen? 24 Hours of Christian Television, is a snappy, nuanced take on 21st-century televangelism and its influence.
In her talks, she explores spirituality and faith; friendship and community; life purpose and activism; self-care, shame, and the body; recovery and self-awareness; sex and intimacy; health and wellness; and leadership and authority.here.