Barkley Thompson_Head ShotBarkley Thompson is the Dean of Christ Church Cathedral in Houston, Texas. He also happens to be my brother. I’ve heard Barkley preach on any number of occasions, and I’ve always been impressed at the way he weaves the story of the gospel together with stories from literature, pop culture, and his own life experience. The result is always an insight into the Christian faith and life that is illuminating.

I mention this because Barkley has just published his first book, Elements of Grace. I was fortunate enough to get to read it cover to cover when it was still in manuscript form. The stories in it are of the type I’ve come to expect when reading my brother’s stuff or hearing him preach: poignant, funny, thought-provoking, and full of insight. One of my primary interests in my own teaching and writing is the Cover_Elements-of-Grace-Print High Resolutioncharacter of faithful Christian discipleship. Barkley’s meditations in Elements of Grace are full of the kind of reflections that push me to consider the meaning of discipleship in fresh ways.

I think Barkley is a wonderful pastor and preacher. His ministry as an Episcopal priest in settings as diverse as Collierville, TN, Roanoke, VA, and now Houston has proven his gifts as a shepherd over Christ’s flock. I’m excited that he can now reach an even broader audience through this book.

If you’d like to check out Barkley’s storytelling for yourself, Elements of Grace is available through


Update: The News Center at Hendrix College (alma mater of both Barkley and me) has posted a nice writeup on Barkley that notes the publication of his book as well as an upcoming appearance on the “Day 1” national radio broadcast.