A local author has taken a chance, publishing her personal story of the journey which led her towards faith. Margaret Kobier said she knew she was taking a risk when she agreed to have her book released to the public, describing why she left the Catholic church.
“I agreed with trepidation – a lot of trepidation,” she said.
“In the discussion which led to me saying, ‘Yes, go ahead,’ I hung up the phone and said, ‘Well, I’ve nailed my colours to the mast now.”
With that sense of finality, Mrs Kobier said she also felt some relief.
The book, titled ‘My Faith Journey From Ritual to Relationship’ is available at the Tumut Newsagency and through Barnes & Noble and Amazon.
Mrs Kobier said she didn’t initially plan to publish her story, but was urged by friends who read her memoirs.
“It wasn’t written to be a book in the first instance,” she said, “It was me getting older and trying to sort out if what I believed was on the right track.”
As a mother of eight – six sons and two daughters – Mrs Kobier said her traditional upbringing didn’t seem to be providing what her family needed most.
“I had questions right from childhood,” she said, “Then we were having our family, and Sundays were horrible getting the kids to church.
“[My husband, Leo, and I] looked at each other one day and said, ‘Our first job as parents is to teach our children about God, and we’re not doing too great a job and neither is the church helping us.”
The family eventually stepped away from the church and found other ways to practise their faith within the Police Christian Fellowship.
Mrs Kobier said her eldest son, who was 16 at the time, was deeply impressed when he saw a young woman who had fallen pregnant being supported by the women in the fellowship.
“The ladies instead of condemning her are actually trying to help her and provide for the baby. He was struck by the practicality of living out their faith,” said Mrs Kobier.
“The people we met weren’t just going through motions of going to church and being a community.”
Mrs Kobier said ‘time will tell’ if she and Mr Kobier made the right decision, but she believes the track they took, “was probably the best track we could have taken.”
“I’ve still left questions [in the book],” said Mrs Kobier.
“I don’t have all the answers and I’ve said so.”
She’s hopeful that whatever religion people practise, they will find encouragement from her book that “every belief system can be questioned” and tested.
“Truth can be tested,” she said, describing her journey of finding and testing her faith as “ongoing”.
“It’s in relationship with Jesus, it’s daily, it’s life, it’s not having a compartment for church or life, it’s how I try and live my life to honour God,” she explained.
“I don’t always do a good job of it, but it’s an ongoing process.”