The Bishop & The Seeker

Teri Murphy & Bishop Philip O. Thomas

Want a little hope for a world plagued by religious violence? Try this account of a unique spiritual truce. Teri Murphy is the Seeker, passionately open minded and fiercely curious, the only sort of person who could produce a book like this. Having “spent 20 years in every spiritual and personal-growth movement of the postmodern era,” Murphy is drawn to the music she hears coming from a nearby Black church. After the service she tells the pastor, Bishop Phillip O. Thomas, that his “plan of salvation” sounds more like the “plan of an insecure person without much imagination.” Surprisingly, the Bishop takes it in stride, and these two begin a two-year conversation that is the foundation of this book. But the book is so much more. Murphy weaves the many separate dialogues together with provocative and compelling stories from her own experiences, including stops in Chico. Although she lives and works in Arlington, Va., Murphy has family ties in Chico, and her visits to our burg comprise several key moments in her spiritual adventure, including revelations in a walnut orchard off West Sacramento Avenue and a Methodist church service near Sycamore Pool.

Teri Murphy will be at Lyon Books Sat., April 17, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.