Gracious Uncertainty

New in St. Paul’s Bookshop

Gracious Uncertainty: Faith in the Second Half of Life reflects on issues concerning everyone but which intensify as we grow older: loving more fully, dealing with loss, finding consolation, and having the courage to gaze (even while shaking inwardly) at the nearing reality of death. The Rev. Jane Sigloh is a guide both witty and wise. She blends personal stories, Scriptural insights, and lessons drawn from years in ministry into insightful reflections on the beauty and challenges of aging. Gracious Uncertainty is an intimate, at times humorous, and often spirit-provoking guide through the unknowns of the later years.

In simple, yet lyrical prose, Sigloh, a retired Episcopal priest, ponders a variety of existential and theological questions related to aging. Short chapters typically begin with descriptions of experiences, such as ‘When my mother was in her eighties, she started putting things in little plastic bags,’ which then unfold into a reflections on, for example, the longing for certainty: ‘Sometimes I wish I were a fundamentalist.’ Drawing inspiration from a range of sources, such as quantum physics, Joseph Campbell, poetry, movies, scripture, and her own personal experiences, Sigloh creates indelible images, as with her story of falling out of a boat into rapids after catching a fish and stubbornly clinging to the rod. Elsewhere she conveys how a church sanctuary stripped of its religious imagery on Maundy Thursday evoked the raw emotional wounds caused by her son’s death. Questions for reflection and discussion, such as ‘How has your name influenced your life?’ offer thought-provoking prompts on each chapter’s topic. Sigloh is an honest, intelligent, and companionable guide for readers wishing to bring grace into the process of aging.

— Publishers Weekly

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