Author and Television Commentator to Speak at GWU’s Dimensions Program on Jan. 15

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Jonathan Merritt Will Discuss How to Talk About God in Times of Rapid Social Change

A portrait photo of Jonathan Merritt, author and television commentator
Jonathan Merritt

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—A popular television commentator and award-winning writer on religion, culture and politics will be speaking at Gardner-Webb University on Jan. 15 at 9:25 a.m. for Dimensions. The GWU program is free and open to the public and will be held in Stewart Hall inside Tucker Student Center.

Jonathan Merritt serves as a contributing writer for “The Atlantic,” contributing editor for “The Week,” and previously was a senior columnist for Religion News Service. He has published more than 3,500 articles in respected outlets such as “The New York Times,” “USA Today,” “Buzzfeed,” “The Washington Post” and “Christianity Today.” As a respected voice, he regularly contributes commentary to television, print, and radio news outlets and has been interviewed by ABC World News, NPR, CNN, PBS, MSNBC, Fox News, and CBS’ “60 Minutes.”

After moving from the Bible-belt to New York City, Merritt realized he could no longer assume his friends understood words like grace and gospel. His most recent book, “Learning to Speak God From Scratch: Why Sacred Words are Vanishing—and How We Can Revive Them,” was written from that experience.

“During times of rapid social change, many people, including Christians, don’t feel comfortable talking about God,” explains Dr. Tracy Jessup, GWU vice president for Christian Life and Service and senior minister to the University. “Jonathan hopes to ‘breathe new life into [our] spiritual conversations and lure [us] into the embrace of the God who inhabits them.’”

Merritt is also the author of several other books, including “Jesus is Better Than You Imagined,” and “A Faith of Our Own: Following Jesus Beyond the Culture Wars.” He has collaborated on or ghostwritten more than 50 additional books, and trains hundreds of young writers through his writing courses. For more information, visit

Auxiliary aids will be made available to persons with disabilities upon request 48 hours prior to the event. Please call 704-406-2155 or email with your request.

Gardner-Webb’s Dimensions program seeks to enhance the spiritual, intellectual and cultural life at the University and to promote a sense of community. More information is available by calling the GWU Office of Christian Life & Service at 704-406-4277 or visiting

Located in the North Carolina foothills, Gardner-Webb University is a private, Christian, liberal arts university that prepares students to become critical thinkers, effective leaders and compassionate servants. Emphasizing a strong student-centered experience and rigorous academics, Gardner-Webb is a place where Christian character meets global engagement. Ignite your future at