Seeking a Sanctuary: Seventh-day Adventism and the American Dream

This is the best book written on the Seventh-Day Adventist church.

A much darker glance at Adventism is provided in We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will be Killed With Our Families: Stories from Rwanda. It tells the story of Adventist leaders in Rwanda who participated in the genocide of Tutsis.

It’s weird that I am on this kick of reading books about my former church. When I was an Adventist, I could not wait to get out of the church and into the wider world where I would do magnificent and influential things.

Now I’m in the big world as well as the small world of Orthodox Judaism and I’m thinking about all the pretty girls I left behind at Pacific Union College.

I’m wondering why I was so eager to get away. Sure, the Church seemed dumb, but the girls were hot. So why run, bucko?

In that small community, I was known. Everybody who met me knew that I was not in the popular crowd. So as a marginal Adventist, I dreamed of a much much better world outside the church where everybody wouldn’t already know I was a loser who couldn’t say yes to Cindy’s sixth grade invite note dropped on my desk, “Would you like to go with me?”

I had no idea when I converted to Judaism in 1993 that I would carry all my anti-social, self-destructive tendencies into my new faith. I thought I was leaving old Luke behind. I thought I was wedded to Dennis Prager and that I was going to be a good Jew.

I thought that all those lonely nights listening to love songs would be a thing of the past. Air Supply would no longer be my favorite music group. My tastes would become more sophisticated, more Jewish and more like Prager’s.

I thought I could get away from who I was by converting to a new religion. I thought the girls outside of Adventism would be even hotter. I thought that my chances for success would be even better.

I imagined I’d no longer be held back by ridiculous strictures and my inner super wonderfulness would bloom and the world would pay due diligence.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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