More About the Author
Jim Palmer is an ordained minister, author, activist, speaker, spiritual director, and leading figure in the non-religious spirituality movement. Palmer received his Master of Divinity degree from Trinity Divinity School in Chicago, where he served on the pastoral staff of mega-church, Willow Creek Community Church. He was later the founding and senior pastor of Springbrook Community Church in Nashville, Tennessee. In 2000, Palmer left professional Christian ministry and began chronicling his journey of "shedding religion to find God."
After leaving professional Christian ministry, Palmer served as Executive Director of Y-CAP, a non-profit organization providing comprehensive and long-term intervention programs for at-risk children and their families. He also served as U.S. Director of Education for International Justice Mission (IJM), an international human rights organization in Washington, D.C. He traveled through South Asia with IJM as part of an operation to free children from forced child prostitution and child slave labor. Palmer is also known for having pioneered the Pilgrimage Project, a "church" alternative comprised of an organic network of interpersonal relationships in Nashville.
Since 2005, Palmer has been sharing his journey of "shedding religion to find God" as an author and speaker. In addition to writing books, Palmer writes for various websites, including explorefaith.org and Relevant Magazine. Palmer is recognized for his expertise in addressing the depth and complexity of issues people face, and helping them break free from religious pathologies that have damaged their lives. As a spiritual director and retreat leader, he guides others through the process of deconstructing and reconstructing their faith. Known as "Shedders," this tribe of people relate to Palmer's journey of seeking God and exploring spirituality beyond organized religion. Palmer has also hosted a weekly national Divine Nobody Call, and sparked the Occupy Religion message and movement. He is currently an adjunct college professor of Ethics, Linguistics, and Comparative Religion in Nashville. In 2012, Palmer founded The Religion-Free Bible Project, an effort to create a paraphrase of the Bible, free from the religious bias that Palmer believes has been imposed on it.
Palmer actively promotes causes that have touched his life. Diagnosed as a child with Tourettes Syndrome (TS), he raises awareness about the disorder and corresponds extensively with others who suffer from TS and parents who have children with TS. As a result of Palmer's work with International Justice Mission, he consistently speaks out about human rights issues of all natures, including forced child prostitution and child slave labor.
In addition to his travels in South Asia, Palmer has spent time in India, Africa, and Thailand. He currently lives with his family in Nashville, Tennessee. Palmer's personal interests include endurance sports, hiking, animals, social media, music, art, and literature.