This radical Jesus, this social gospel, this promise of liberation are always and forever in the back of my mind. I have been very fortunate to come out of my conservative Baptist background (although much of that background still lingers) and into a place where it is safe to ask questions, to be angry, to struggle openly with some of the very difficult issues of our times. I have learned there are no easy answers, that if answers are to be found at all they will come only in the context of a faith community. Here it is safe to be honest, to be a seeker.
So here I am roaming the fringes of the institutional church, becoming a stranger to my family and friends, challenging the status quo, and seeking. I'll always have questions, I'm sure. I like it here.
Shane Helmer, 25, a former Sojourners intern, is influenced by the writing of Flannery OÆConnor and the music of Sam Phillips.