Chris Highland brings us insights from his book
A Freethinker’s Gospel: Essays for a Sacred Secular World
Chris Highland was a Protestant minister and interfaith chaplain for many years before becoming a humanist celebrant. With a degree in Religion and Philosophy from an evangelical Christian university (Seattle Pacific) and a Master of Divinity degree from a diverse consortium of seminaries (Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley), he has been active in “presence ministry” and nonprofit work in a private school, a county jail, homeless shelters, and affordable housing.
He is the author of ten books including Meditations of John Muir, My Address Is a River, Life after Faith, the novella Jesus and John Muir, as well as an essay collection, Nature Is Enough. He has taught courses on Nature Literature and Freethought in California and North Carolina. He was born and reared in the Pacific Northwest and lived for over thirty-five years in the San Francisco Bay Area. Chris and his wife, Carol, a Presbyterian minister, live in Asheville, North Carolina. His website is www.chighland.com.
Chris blogs at Secular Chaplain. As a member of The Clergy Project, he contributes to Rational Doubt on Patheos. Seeking wider connections, he also holds membership in the American Humanist Association, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, the Religious Naturalist Association, and the Freedom from Religion Foundation.
Since 2016 he has written weekly “Highland Views” columns for the Asheville Citizen-Times (a USA Today affiliate), addressing humanism, the natural world, and sensitive issues of faith. Previous books include his “Meditations” series of Henry David Thoreau (2002), Ralph Waldo Emerson (2004), Walt Whitman (2004), Margaret Fuller (2007), and John Burroughs (2007).
Experts Praise A Freethinker’s Gospel
Soothing and stimulating at the same time, these very digestible “meditations” show how a secular writer can convey very timely and worthy messages without being quarrelsome. Kudos to Chris Highland for taking us down this pleasant path of wisdom and realism.
–Linda LaScola, co-founder of The Clergy Project co-author, Caught in the Pulpit: Leaving Belief Behind
How grateful I am [for] Chris Highland, a wise, compassionate guide who has blazed his own trail through the wilderness on the other side of faith.
–Bart Campolo, humanist chaplain, U. of Cincinnati host, Humanize Me podcast
This seminal work by former minister/chaplain Chris Highland is captivating, intriguing, and challenging. Each chapter is a gem in itself, and together they make for a powerful book.
–John S. Compere, PhD; VP, The Clergy Project, author, Outgrowing Religion
I was particularly struck with [the] straight to the heart and straight to the point presentation. . . . [A] very nice mix of well-crafted, substantive columns.
–Laurence Cotton, historian producer, Frederick Law Olmsted: Designing America
What I love about this book is that it truly—and intentionally—honors questions, not answers. The essays are varied, inspiring, informative and creative. [It’s] a great companion for time alone or for stimulating conversation with others.
–Sara Vurek, Buddhist, board-certified clinical chaplain
Chris Highland’s . . . articles are delightful and stimulating excursions for anyone. His genuine interest in the thoughts of others and his willingness to describe his own, reveals a well-grounded sensibility that seeks to bridge the gaps between people divided by their beliefs or doubts.
–Jim Gronvold author, Pith & Piffle: overt verse
Meet the author and join the discussion at
(directions and photo of our site below)
at our usual Interfaith Program date and time
(the last Thursday of the month):
October 25, 5:30 to 7
Refreshments will be served:
Del Vecchios Stromboli
All faiths are welcome.
We like to learn about your faith and tell you about ours.