Have you ever found yourself wishing that you could be a self-righteous pain in the ass? You’ve tried going to church with your family, who just end up listening to the sermon! You’ve tried “lording over” everyone, but your toupee makes them laugh! No one takes you seriously. And you thought people would gaze in amazement at your new Prayer Cross from the Montebello Collection, only to find that the !#$%&* bluehair in the front pew got hers first.

And then there’s that huge-ass Bible-whatever, with the onionskin pages, and all those goddamn words in it. Who even really “gets” that, anyway?

What does an ignoramus like you have to do to get people to listen to you? Well, my friend, it’s time to toss out that Bible; take your family to IHOP before the church crowd shows up, cross your arms, peer down your nose, and relax.

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Wideman also went through a crisis years ago, one that ended up strengthening his faith. But in a curious shift, it also left him questioning something that few believers seem to ask these days: Can you really find God in church?

Wideman is no longer sure.

“For me, I said I’ve got to drop this title of Christian,” he said. “It doesn’t work for me anymore.”

Again, that doesn’t mean Wideman is an atheist or agnostic. He’s found his “church,” if you will. As a former deacon in a Baptist church in Montgomery, Ala., he now finds his greatest source of faith within a very different organization: Alcoholics Anonymous.

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