Event: Jail chaplain shares his spiritual journey

Chris Hoke
Chris Hoke Courtesy to The Bellingham Herald

Interweaving his own story with moving vignettes and gritty experiences in hidden places, Chris Hoke, a jail chaplain and minister to people unwanted by the world, chronicles his spiritual journey to the margins of society and reveals a subversive God on the loose beyond the walls of the church, in his book, “Wanted:A Spiritual Pursuit Through Jail, Among Outlaws, and Across Borders.”

Hoke is a jail chaplain and pastor to Mexican gangs and violent offenders in Skagit Valley. He shares his book at 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 7, at Village Books, 1200 11th St.

He writes of comic, heartbreaking and sublime tales of sacred moments in unlikely situations: Singing with an attempted-suicide in the jail’s isolation cell, dodging immigration and airport security with migrant farm workers, and fly-fishing with tattooed gangsters.

His unconventional congregation at times mirrors the contemplative silence of Skagit Valley’s fleeting migratory swans and salmon. But Hoke takes readers into riskier terrain as he gains and loses friends to the prison system, and faces his own despair, as well as spiritual hope, on the back of a motorcycle racing through Guatemalan slums.

More on him at chris-hoke.com.

Christopher L. Hoke played with the Pittsburgh Steelers. An incorrect association with this author was corrected Feb. 4, 2015.