Everything Happens with Kate Bowler

Everything Happens with Kate Bowler

Life isn't always bright and shiny, as Kate Bowler knows. Kate is a young mother, writer and professor who, at age 35, was suddenly diagnosed with Stage IV cancer. In, warm, insightful, often funny conversations, Kate talks with people about what they've learned in dark times. Kate teaches at Duke Divinity School and is author of Everything Happens for a Reason (And Other Lies I've Loved) and No Cure for Being Human (And Other Truths I Need to Hear). Find her online at @katecbowler.


May 3, 2022 59 min

In this special episode, Kate visited the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, at Lambeth Palace in London.

In this funny and poignant conversation, the Archbishop and Kate discuss:

  • Why sometimes we feel God’s love (or don’t) 
  • How to pray when you have run out of words (he gives us permission to be impolite with God)
  • Why he is suspicious of joy, and why they both use the theology of Winnie the Pooh 
  • How people in emotionally expensiv...
  • Share
    Mark as Played

    How is it that joy and pain seem to coexist at once? Susan Cain (author of the bestseller Quiet) explores this question in her new book, Bittersweet

    In this conversation, Kate and Susan discuss:

  • How we are literally hardwired for compassion 
  • Susan’s advice for pushing back against compassion fatigue
  • How that feeling of longing isn’t something to be ashamed of but allows us to see things clearly—the beautiful and the terrible

  • If you ev...

    Mark as Played

    When a random weight-lifting accident left cardiologist Dr. Haider Warraich in chronic pain, he went from being a physician to being a patient in one moment. His experience of chronic pain gives him a hard won insight as he reexamines how we understand and treat pain.

    In this conversation, Kate and Haider discuss:

  • the difference between pain and suffering
  • why pain might be subjective, yet should be taken just as seriously (and perhaps...
  • Share
    Mark as Played
    April 12, 2022 40 min

    What do we do when our families are sources of pain, confusion, or harm? How do we (or can we) outgrow our complicated childhoods when we no longer need the defenses we created?

    Today, I am speaking with Tara Westover. Tara earned her PhD in history from Cambridge, which is incredible on its own, but particularly when you remember that she had never stepped foot in a classroom until she was 17. She is the author of the bestselling m...

    Mark as Played

    Our culture seems convinced that going off-script is unbecoming. Instead, we are rewarded for being buttoned up, perfect (or at least appearing to be), and never ever no-matter-what admit weakness. But… don’t we need each other, especially when facing the most difficult moments? 

    Author and Death, Sex, and Money podcast host Anna Sale leans into every hard conversation no matter how difficult the topic. In this conversation, Kate an...

    Mark as Played

    We often have very romantic expectations about parenthood. Parenthood is about a mythical child who will be perfect in a way we haven’t quite put our finger on, and the journey to love them will teach us something reasonably easy about ourselves. But what if we are not the parents we thought we’d be? Or our kids are not the kids we thought we’d have.

    Writer Cammie McGovern’s oldest son, Ethan, was diagnosed with autism as a small ch...

    Mark as Played
    March 22, 2022 40 min

    Bestselling author Mitch Albom was at the height of his career when his favorite professor was dying. Mitch then spent his Tuesdays with Morrie—conversations that would change the trajectory of his life and career. Mitch continues to walk right up to the edge with the complicated questions around grief, loss, and hope in his books and charitable work. 

    In this conversation, Kate and Mitch discuss:

  • Why the loss of a child feels so dif...
  • Share
    Mark as Played

    Bestselling novelist Ann Patchett knows how to walk right up to the edge with people she loves. She is the friend who sits with you during chemo, or lets you spill your secrets in the car. She shares what powerful lessons she learned early on about how to approach suffering with humility, knowing you can rarely change a life, but you can be there to witness and be amazed.

    In this episode, Kate and Ann discuss:

  • Why no one cares what y...
  • Share
    Mark as Played

    Everyone loves to get VERY BOSSY when it comes to our fears. “Don’t worry, be happy!” Just be brave! But maybe ‘being brave’ doesn’t mean ignoring our fears but living alongside them. After all, we live in a world that offers us few guarantees, don’t we? 

    Writer Taylor Harris has dealt with severe anxiety since she was a child. But when she became a mom, she had to learn to hold her fears alongside her love, especially when her son ...

    Mark as Played

    Author and priest Liz Tichenor lost her mom and her baby in the same year. Brand new to leading a church and reeling from the grief, the pain was enough to break her. But it didn’t—because other people carried her through. 

    In this conversation, Kate and Liz discuss:

  • How in the thick of tragedy we need the church and shared rituals of grief
  • How to be faithful and authentic when going through the “unimaginable” 
  • The courage it takes to ...
  • Share
    Mark as Played
    February 22, 2022 33 min

    Poet Kate Baer found herself inundated with the demands of motherhood and little time to write. Nothing was easy and then, at a breaking point, it felt impossible. If she wanted a creative life, she was going to have to redefine “perfection” (perfect mom! perfect woman!) and learn to tolerate a lot more imperfection instead.  

    On this episode of Kate & Kate, they discuss:

  • How friendships give permission to speak honestly (and why...
  • Share
    Mark as Played
    February 15, 2022 16 min

    I do not imagine that I will settle centuries of debate about just how good we are, except that I believe that it is somewhere between two poles: everything and nothing. Perfection is impossible, but transformation isn’t. We can change a bit, if we really want to. This is the choice embedded in every day, the moment we wake up. We will have to find enough momentum to reach for a life that is never perfect, but good enough

    Jessica ...

    Mark as Played

    Rick Mercer didn’t exactly know he was allowed to be proud. As a teenager, he was barely making it through high school and traveling the island province of Newfoundland, Canada, as the sidekick to a kindly clown. But being an outsider gave him a unique perspective. His razor wit, biting political commentary, and celebration of small town dreams would make him one of Canada’s most beloved voices. 

    Together, Kate and Rick talk about:

  • T...
  • Share
    Mark as Played

    Katie Couric is an award-winning journalist and bestselling author. Her hustle and ambition not only served her career aspirations, but when faced with the unthinkable, she poured those same qualities into tireless advocacy. 

    In this conversation, Katie and Kate discuss,

  • The gifts (and limits) of hyper-agency
  • The courage it takes to not fix things
  • Why it is so scary to acknowledge our limits and our losses

  • Katie has so much to teach us ...

    Mark as Played

    My name is Kate Bowler, and I'm a professor at Duke, a writer of some books that have joyfully sarcastic titles, wife, and mom of a boy that is mostly made up of giant flashlight eyeballs and the kind of Canadian that reminds you that she is Canadian this quickly into the conversation.

    On the road, less traveled. I took the bumpy one, the kind with those giant moguls. At 35, I was diagnosed with stage four colon cancer. So I hav...

    Mark as Played

    How do we reach for wisdom instead of self-help solutions? Much to their embarrassment, New York Times columnist David Brooks and Kate Bowler often find their books in the “Self-Help section.” David sat down with Kate at the historic Sixth & I Synagogue in Washington, D.C. to talk about her book, No Cure For Being Human, and the twisty-turny journey of living without easy answers. 

    In this live, funny and poignant conversation, ...

    Mark as Played
    November 23, 2021 43 min

    We're often given a story of birds and bees where two people fall in love and out of their love blooms a perfect little creature. But far too often and for far too many, that isn’t the case. 

    Writer Sarah Sentilles always knew she wanted to be a mom, so she entered into the foster system with the hope of adopting. But the process was not as simple as she had anticipated. 

    In this conversation, Kate and Sarah discuss,

  • How every chi...
  • Share
    Mark as Played
    November 16, 2021 37 min

    What does courage look like in the face of the impossible? Cindy McCain had a front row seat to history, as wife of Arizona Senator and presidential candidate John McCain. In this conversation, Kate and Cindy discuss:

  • The two-for-one careers that cost both spouses
  • John McCain the Stand-Up-Comedian (and how humor is the best medicine...but also real medicine is probably better)
  • What it was like to grieve on a public stage and her best ...
  • Share
    Mark as Played

    Life is painful. Period. But are there some aspects of our faith or our posture toward the world that can change how we experience it? 

    Father Richard Rohr is everyone’s favorite preacher of love. Love for each other. Love from God. 

    In this conversation, Kate and Richard talk about:

  • How great love and great suffering can move us into a new stage of life 
  • The spirituality of subtraction
  • Making room for mystery of joy and suffering
  • His se...
  • Share
    Mark as Played
    November 2, 2021 43 min

    When she was a child, Alexi Pappas lost her mother to suicide. So when Alexi faced a season of deep depression she knew had to find a different way forward. That’s when her training as an Olympic runner became invaluable

    In this conversation, Kate and Alexi discuss,

  • The difference between stress and trauma
  • The discipline—and joy—of sheer effort
  • Good pain vs. bad pain and how to stay inside the uncomfortable for a bit longer 
  • The highs...
  • Share
    Mark as Played

    Popular Podcasts

      If you've ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Nino, true crime and Rosa Parks then look no further. Josh and Chuck have you covered.

      Dateline NBC

      Current and classic episodes, featuring compelling true-crime mysteries, powerful documentaries and in-depth investigations.

      Morbid: A True Crime Podcast

      It’s a lighthearted nightmare in here, weirdos! Morbid is a true crime, creepy history and all things spooky podcast hosted by an autopsy technician and a hairstylist. Join us for a heavy dose of research with a dash of comedy thrown in for flavor.

      The Daily

      This is what the news should sound like. The biggest stories of our time, told by the best journalists in the world. Hosted by Michael Barbaro. Twenty minutes a day, five days a week, ready by 6 a.m.

      Crime Junkie

      If you can never get enough true crime... Congratulations, you’ve found your people.

    Advertise With Us

    For You

      Music, radio and podcasts, all free. Listen online or download the iHeart App.


      © 2022 iHeartMedia, Inc.