Everything Happens | Kate Bowler on NYT bestselling memoir, cancer, and toddler wrangling


Meet Kate Bowler, our new podcast mom friend. She's funny, sweet, and  really, really smart, but in like a 'very humble and also loves reality shows' kind of way. UGH. I'm so mad I don't live in North Carolina so we can be friends IRL and play with our four year-olds together. She teaches at Duke Divinity School. She's a historian specializing in the American prosperity gospel: think televangelism. And she bravely challenges the strongly held religious belief that "everything happens for a reason" in her New York Times bestselling memoir EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON: AND OTHER LIES I'VE LOVED. Because, let's be honest, you'd have to be insane to think there could be any possible "reason" for this beautiful, vibrant mother living with incurable stage 4 cancer to have her life cut short. She is not going to get better. And she is letting us all in on her journey.

We discuss the challenges in finding a mom crew, how our children teach us to live more simply, and also the "simplicity trap" (I really think I'm onto something here. And yes, I still want this.) And she shares honestly about living with an incurable disease. Glennon Doyle, author of #1 NYT Bestseller Love Warrior writes "I left Kate's story feeling more present, grateful, and a hell of a lot less alone." I felt similarly after our conversation.

I am so grateful for this memoir (she reads it herself on audible!), her podcast, and our chat together. If you'd like to hear more on her thoughts about religion and illness, listen to this recent episode of Fresh Air with Terry Gross. I mean, listen to Atomic Moms first, of course.

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Meet Our Guest:


Kate Bowler is an assistant professor in the school of divinity at Duke University. Bowler is author of BLESSED: A History of the American Prosperity Gospel and host of “Everything Happens,” a podcast featuring honest conversations about life’s toughest challenges. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and son. Her memoir Everything Happens for a Reason: And Other Lies I've Loved is currently on the New York Times bestsellers list.

Special Thanks to Owen O’Neill: sound engineer Jeremy Turner: original theme composition