Glenn Beck-endorsed author visiting Alabaster Oct. 17

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

A New York author featured on Fox News’ “Glenn Beck Program” and praised by political figures such as George W. Bush and Mike Huckabee will speak at Alabaster’s Evangel Presbyterian Church Oct. 17.

Eric Metaxas, who authored books such as “Amazing Grace” and “Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy,” will speak at the church on Thompson Road at 7 p.m.

Tickets for the speech are $20, and student tickets are $10. VIP tickets are also available for $50, which includes the speech and a meet-and-greet with Metaxas beginning at 5:30 p.m.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the New York-based Midtown Pregnancy Support Center and Evangel Classical Christian School.

Free childcare is available during the event, but space is limited and reservations are required.

Metaxas will speak about the lives of William Wilberforce, a British man who fought to abolish the slave trade in the early 1800s, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a German man who stood for Christianity in the country under the Nazi regime during World War II.

Alabaster resident Christine Carr, whose child attends Evangel Classical Christian School at the church, worked to bring Metaxas to Alabaster after reading the author’s work and learning of his public speaking series.

“I read the Amazing Grace book, and I was just amazed by his story. (Metaxas) is on the level of C.S. Lewis,” Carr said. “I did some research, and found out that he has a speaking series called Socrates in the City.

“I thought ‘I would love to have him come speak down here,'” Carr added.

Carr met Metaxas while she was at an event in New York City featuring Harvard University astrophysicists explaining why scientists should believe in God, she said.

“I met Eric and his wife at that event, and they are just very gracious and very genuine people,” Carr said. “I thought our area needed to meet this guy. He is just a very funny and very smart person.”

While in Alabaster, Metaxas will also speak to students at Evangel about his works.

Over the past several weeks, Evangel students have been reading “Amazing Grace” as part of their class work, and many have also read “Bonhoeffer” during their own time.

“It’s a big honor to have him come to the school,” Carr said. “The students have been reading the ‘Amazing Grace’ book in preparation of him coming, and many of them have taken it upon themselves to read the “Bonhoeffer” book as well.

“After he speaks on Sunday night, he will come to the school on that Monday just to hang out with the students and talk to them about writing,” Carr added. “He will also attend a pastors’ breakfast on Monday morning at Westwood Baptist Church called Theology and Grits.”

Members of many area churches and students at Evangel have been looking forward to the event for months, Carr said.

“Everyone has been very excited, especially the students at Evangel. They are really excited to get the chance to spend time with the author,” Carr said.

To order tickets, reserve a childcare spot or learn more about the event, visit Graceandcourage.eventbrite.com.