An Abiding Interest

 In Conference, Faith, Fred's Blog, People


If David Brooks and Frederick Buechner do not know each other, I wish they did because they have at least a couple of things in common. Buechner once told an interviewer that he is “too religious for secular readers and too secular for religious ones.”

Both Brooks and Buechner share an abiding interest in the world around them. David describes it as “paying attention” as he walks around New York, travels and teaches at Yale. His ability to find both the obscure and the familiar and hold them up in fresh ways is what keeps people coming back to his columns and books.

Frederick Buechner writes about “listening to your life” and the value of, as he puts it, sensing our way to the holy and hidden heart of it.  Both are spelunkers and both like to bring what they find to the surface for everyone to see.

We are following in their footsteps with a new series of video interviews we produced at our annual conference last month. Steve Haas was able to sit and talk with speakers and participants for interviews that are not promotions for The Gathering but conversations with interesting people we want to share with you. They are informal and relaxed insights into speakers, families and individuals attending The Gathering.

We begin the series with Steve’s interview with David Brooks because David’s luncheon remarks have spread more widely among such a variety of audiences than any talk in our history. While you can get both the transcript and audio of the luncheon talk on our website, we now wanted to share with you a bit more with David Brooks – the person and the writer – that you will not hear or read in the talk.

Over the next few weeks, we will roll out 15 of these interviews, including some insights from Michael Gerson, Charity Wallace, Shannon Sedgwick Davis, Cameron Strang, Michael Wear, John Townsend and several others. We are so appreciative of the time given by each person and the opportunity for us all to listen to their lives.

Watch “A Conversation at The Gathering with David Brooks.”

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