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About David Zahl

David Zahl is the director of Mockingbird Ministries and editor-in-chief of the Mockingbird blog. He and his wife Cate reside in Charlottesville, VA, with their three sons, where David also serves on the staff of Christ Episcopal Church (

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Author Archive

    September Playlist

    Click here to listen (to most of it) on Spotify. Oh, and a new episode of The Well of Sound dropped over the weekend, this one covering The Beach Boys in the 1970s. Catch a wave!

    Another Week Ends: Soul Food, Spiritual Pampering, Unfluencers, Narcopaths, Genesis, GRRM, and Luxury

    1. Forgive me for going a little light on the commentary this week, first week of school and all that. Fortunately, though, there’s no dearth of material! First up, Amanda Hess penned yet another doozie for The NY Times, this time taking the new season of Netflix’s Queer Eye as an entry point to discuss […]

    There’s No Failure Like Success (in the Meritocracy of Performancism)

    Every summer our family faces a conundrum. A petty one, to be sure, but it comes up more and more as our kids get older. I’m referring to the swim team question. Usually when a fellow pool-goer asks if we’re joining up, a simple “Nope, not this year” suffices. If pushed, I’ll mumble something about […]

    The Seculosity Group Discussion Guide Is Here!

    Three items of interest to report on the #Seculosity front:

    1. In response to numerous requests, we’ve put together a Group Discussion Guide that takes you through the book, chapter by chapter. You can download it free on our Resources page or on the Fortress Press website. Spread the word! (Many thanks to Bryan J and Kendall G for their help).

    2. The Almighty Amazon Algorithm, in its infinite wisdom, has just discounted the book by over 50%! Which means you can now get (hardcover) copies for $13.00. No idea how long this will last–or how it’s even possible–so get while the gettin’s good. Just be sure to drop a short review on that site when you can, as it makes a world of difference. And to forgo the Bezos-sphere, indiebound has you covered.

    3. Philadelphia metro area take note: Next week I’ll speaking about the book at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Wenonah, New Jersey! Weds August 28th at 6:30-8:30pm. The event is free, but if you plan on coming, please register here. Would love to see you.

    August Playlist

    You can listen on Spotify here. And to get even more dialed into this stuff, check out The Well of Sound podcast.

    Three Thoughts on Denunciations and Deconversions

    This is like an Onion headline, my friend texted, under which came the link “Christian dating guru says he’s getting divorced, denounces faith.” Sigh. It wasn’t a joke. If you’ve been anywhere near the Christian interwebs for the last few days, you know that he was referring to Joshua Harris, the heavy-laden author of I […]

    Another Week Ends: CBD Summers, Hanks as Rogers, Directors of Belonging, Fizzling Secular Churches, Payment Apps, and Trader Joe Props

    1. Sitting on the beach last week, every hour some prop plane would drag a banner across the sky advertising the miracle of CBD–and where we could buy some. A month earlier, traveling to a wedding, my wife and I counted three brand new CBD boutiques on the main commercial drag of a prominent ‘new […]

    The Mockingcast in July

    Quick Update: As mentioned on the most recent episode of The Mockingcast, we’ll be taking a break from our regular recording schedule this month. But that doesn’t mean there won’t be fresh content! In fact, we decided to up the ante while we’re off, and in addition to the upcoming Family Issue audio bonanza, RJ, Sarah and I recorded three special “mini-sodes” on particular topics, about 15-20 minutes each. So that’s four weeks, four episodes. Up first is “The Bondage of the Will,” which you can stream now on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play or Stitcher. Next comes “The Holy Spirit” and after that, “Hope.” Enjoy, and as always, thanks for listening!

    P.S. Don’t forget to leave us a rating and review on iTunes.

    July Playlist

    Some big news on the playlist front. While you can still find the song lists for 2008-2018, we’ve taken down the mp3s themselves. BUT, thanks to the hard work of intern extraordinaire Charlie Meyer, there is now a Mockingbird Masterlist on Spotify, which contains all those songs, plus this year’s additions (about 2100 total)–basically a Mockingbird radio station! Click here to follow that list.

    You can find (most of) the above on Spotify as well.

    From The New Yorker: Your New Generalized-Anxiety Home-Security System

    Some excerpts from Riane Konc’s inspired recent contribution to The New Yorker’s Daily Shout’s column, ht SB: Hello, and thank you for your recent purchase of a Generalized-Anxiety Home-Security System. The Generalized-Anxiety Home-Security System is one of the most popular products on the market, with forty million customers in the United States alone… To get […]

    The Peak Moments of a Marriage

    Wedding season is in full swing, especially here in Virginia-Is-For-Lovers land. Which means it’s time for flowers and sparklers and awkward toasts and hopefully less awkward dancing. It’s a joyful season but, as we all know, also a pressured one. Not only are our bodies on display but our relationships (or lack thereof). Plus, this […]

    None Without Faith (or a Strong Belief in the Reality of Evil)

    The following comes from Chris Arnade’s book of photography “Dignity: Seeking Respect in Back Row America,” pages 110-111, chapter 3: God Filled My Emptiness. Everyone I met [in the South Bronx] who was living homeless or battling an addiction held a deep faith. Street walking is stunningly dangerous work, and everyone has stories of being […]