I had the opportunity to speak with Terry Morehouse, Lutheran pastor, and writer, about his life and work. He is a fascinating man with many publications. For one thing, he is very involved in church functions, especially as a pastor. His service in the church has lasted over fifty years. All the proceeds from his writings go to his many charity causes, such as the ELCA World Hunger and Disaster Relief program of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. In his church service, Mr. Morehouse discovered his love of teaching. He also has a radio show.
Mr. Morehouse primarily writes faith-based literature. “My faith is what inspires me the most,” said Mr. Morehouse during my conversation with him. “I couldn’t have one without the other.” He had always been a good writer, he said. He was even a literature major in college at La Crosse University, minoring in speech and theatre, so he’s always had a deep appreciation for the written word. He’s also been a voracious reader for many years, he said. “My reading and my writing are a package,” he said. He said one of his favorite books is titled The Woman They Could Not Silence by Kate Moore. The book tells the story of a woman committed to a mental institution in the 1860s, and it tells of the horrific living conditions the patients had to endure. In terms of theological literature, Mr. Morehouse enjoys the work of Fredrich Beuchner, a congregationalist writer who talks about scriptural issues in a way that sparks Mr. Morehouse’s interest. In addition, he loved Robert Louis Stevenson as a child.
Mr. Morehouse has published four books with Kirk House Publishers; Fellow Travelers, The Road Goes On, Traveling Home, and Shalom: Our Search for Peace in a Troubled World. His most recent book, Shalom: Our Search for Peace in a Troubled World, focuses on peace and how someone can be an instrument of peace, as shalom is the Hebrew word for peace. As the subtitle suggests, and as Mr. Morehouse elaborated on the subtitle of his book, finding peace in a troubled world doesn’t always look like we think it will.
When I asked Mr. Morehouse about the final message he wants to send to his readers for when they finish his books, he said, “I want them to examine their own relationship with God and relationship with the world and make that relationship a priority.” His writings emphasize faith-based connections with others’ faiths and provide opportunities for people to grow in their faith.
In his series of reflection books, Mr. Morehouse said his favorite book is his third book, Traveling Home. In it, he talks about being aware of your life and recognizing the many different ways that God speaks to those who listen. Then, he applied this to his sermons and tried to make it easy for his fellow churchgoers to connect the sermons to their daily lives.
When I got to ask him my favorite question, what advice would you give to young writers?, he said, “Be patient with yourself and have a support system.” This was exactly what I needed to hear at this time because I am currently going through a writer’s block period in my personal writing, and I needed someone to tell me to be patient with myself. Thank you, Mr. Morehouse!
All in all, I think Mr. Terry Morehouse taught me a lot during our conversation. I loved hearing about him and his faith journey and how his books helped him get the message out to others.