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A Stranger's Gift

A Stranger's Gift

True Stories of Faith in Unexpected Places

  • reading group guide
True Stories of Faith in Unexpected Places

 In this very personal, welcoming book, Pulitzer Prize–winning author Tom Hallman, Jr., shares his journey of faith from indifferent agnostic to growing believer. Faith, Hallman tells us, is looking in the mirror in the morning and wondering why. It’s about doubt and hope. It’s catching a glimpse of a beacon piercing the fog of life and walking toward it, never knowing if you’re headed in the right direction, but pressing onward.

You’ll meet ordinary people like the mother who watched her baby die after only twenty days of struggling for life, and you’ll see the peaceful strength of a man working with those whose present situations mirror his past. Within these pages, you’ll find real and honest accounts of everyday people whose discoveries of faith will inspire and comfort you on your own journey.
Choose a format:
  • Howard Books | 
  • 256 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451668612 | 
  • January 2013
List Price $14.99
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for A Stranger's Gift includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Tom Hallman. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.

Introduction

Tom Hallman’s unexpected journey toward faith began with a routine assignment to write a feature piece for The Oregonian newspaper. He begrudgingly found himself in an African American church on a Sunday morning—out of place, uncomfortable, and ready to leave from the moment he got there. But he accidentally found something he wasn’t looking for: He saw faith and prayer in action. And that stirred a curious hunger in him that he’d never known before.

Compelled by this initial experience, Hallman began to seek out men and women across the country who believed. And these people—whom he calls his “faith teachers”—became characters in thirteen stories of exploration. A Stranger’s Gift introduces readers to ordinary people and draws them into conversations that ask probing, almost intrusive questions—from the ache of a mother who watched her baby die after only twenty days of struggling for life to the peaceful strength of a man working with those see more

About the Author

Tom Hallman Jr.
Photograph courtesy of the author

Tom Hallman Jr.

Tom Hallman, Jr. is a Pulitzer Prize winner for his series of articles about a boy named Sam whose face was severely disfigured. Other stories by Hallman have appeared in Esquire, Men’s Health, Readers Digest, Writers Digest, and other magazines. He has won every major feature-writing award in the nation. Born and raised in Portland, Hallman graduated from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1977. He now writes for The Oregorian in Portland.

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