Leaving Alexandria: A Memoir of Faith and Doubt

Overview

A powerful memoir about faith and doubt, with a strong meditative and philosophical heart

At the tender age of 14, Richard Holloway left his home town of Alexandria, north of Glasgow, and traveled hundreds of miles to be educated and trained for the priesthood at an English monastery. By the age of 25 he had been ordained and was working in the slums of Glasgow. Through the 40 years that followed, Richard touched the lives of many people as he rose to one of the ...

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Leaving Alexandria: A Memoir of Faith and Doubt

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Overview

A powerful memoir about faith and doubt, with a strong meditative and philosophical heart

At the tender age of 14, Richard Holloway left his home town of Alexandria, north of Glasgow, and traveled hundreds of miles to be educated and trained for the priesthood at an English monastery. By the age of 25 he had been ordained and was working in the slums of Glasgow. Through the 40 years that followed, Richard touched the lives of many people as he rose to one of the highest positions in the Anglican Church. But behind his confident public faith lay a restless heart and an inquisitive mind. How can anyone claim a complete understanding of the mystery of existence? Why is the church, which claims to be the instrument of God's love, so prone to cruelty and condemnation? How can a man live with the tension between public faith and private doubt? Poignant, wise, and fiercely honest, this is a remarkable memoir of a life defined by faith but plagued by doubt.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"At a time when the world has urgently needed wise and compassionate leadership, this poignant memoir, written with the integrity, intelligence and wit that we expect from Richard Holloway, lays bare the ludicrous and entirely unnecessary mess we have made of religion."  —Karen Armstrong

"Full of meaningful wisdom not only about theology but the very nature of doubt and belief, this memoir should appeal to any reader interested in the changing state of contemporary Christianity." —Booklist

"Like [Philip] Pullman, I can recommend this inspiring autobiography to 'believers, non-believers and ex-believers alike.'" —PWxyz

“Holloway, former bishop of Edinburgh, presents a nuanced view of religion and discusses his struggles as he veered between doubt and belief.” —Booklist

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780857860743
  • Publisher: Canongate UK
  • Publication date: 10/1/2013
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 797,555
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author


Richard Holloway is the former Bishop of Edinburgh and the author of Between the Monster and the SaintDoubts and Loves: What is Left of Christianity, Godless Morality: Keeping Religion Out of Ethics, and On Forgiveness: How Can We Forgive the Unforgivable? He is well known for his support of progressive causes, including campaigning on human rights for lesbians and gays in both church and state.
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Table of Contents

Prologue: The Graveyard

I 1940-56

1 Carman Hill 23

2 Place of Sacrifice 46

3 The Fall 63

4 The Side Door 79

II 1958-67

5 Tenements 101

6 Angel of the Gorbals 115

7 Broadway 131

8 The Absence 149

III 1968-84

9 Thirty-Three Steps 173

10 Coming Through 198

11 A Double-Minded Man 226

12 Boston Common 247

IV 1986-2000

13 New Cloth 269

14 Drifting 292

15 Leaving Alexandria 311

Epilogue: Scald Law 341

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