The Island of Misfit Joys: Church Culture and Christian Intellectualism

Melissa Cain Travis

2015 has been a year of paradox for me. It has been a season of personal growth that has brought unprecedented intimacy with God, yet the result of that intellectual and spiritual development has deepened an ever-present sense of aching isolation that I experience within local church community. As a student immersed in the world of Christian academia, I hear similar confessions from my peers, who are scattered around the country. When we gather in video hangouts, online discussion forums, or annual meetings, the conversation and fellowship is so very rich, and we openly express our gratitude for the level of community modern technology has made possible. But at the end of the day, it isn’t quite the same as being able to gather with kindred spirits, in person, on a regular basis, and we talk about that fact with sad resignation.

At the conclusion of the last live class session of my fall…

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