The Common Good


Patheos Press Items
Only a day into his papacy, and I’ve got to admit, Pope Francis has my attention. In an editorial piece on the Sojourners website today, Jim Wallis cited a surprising and very heartening quote from the new pontiff, especially for those looking in from the outside as non-Catholics. Here’s an excerpt from one of his first public addresses: “We have to avoid the spiritual sickness of a self-referential church. It’s true that when you get out into the street, as happens to every man and woman, there can be accidents. However, if the church remains closed in on itself, self-referential, it gets old. Between a church that suffers accidents in the street, and a church that’s sick because it’s self-referential, I have no doubts about preferring the former.”
This particular gathering included both Jim Wallis of Sojourners and Gary Bauer, then of the Family Research Council, to give you an idea of the scene.
We were stoked to sit down with Jim Wallis, Sojourners guru, political activist and all-around change agent for the common good to chat up what happened during the most recent elections. We talk about what comes next, how the parties will respond to the electorate and where both sides can come together for real change.
In our most recent special post-election edition of the HomeBrewed Christianity CultureCast, we sat down with Jim Wallis, head of Sojourners, political activist and change-agent for the common good among the political elite in Washington DC. You can check out the entire episode by CLICKING HERE, but this is a transcription of our discussion particularly about immigration reform and what we might expect in the coming months from Washington on this issue.
When you factor in the vast amount of theological (and political) diversity in the world’s religions, from indigenous traditions to pacifist Quakers, the amount of room between, say, “religious left” titan Jim Wallis and Rev. Dennis “non-Christians get out” Terry, starts to seem pretty arbitrary to those outside the halls of power looking in.
My good friend Isaac Villegas and I also had a friendly debate recently in the pages of Sojourners Magazine about the virtues and the dangers of “stability.”
On the heels of that event, Csinos and McLaren have just published “Breaking the Bubble Wrap,” the cover story to the latest issue of Sojourners magazine, in which they continue this conversation about “nurturing an incurable, chronic, and healing passion for justice” in children and youth.
In this piece, Lisa chats about The Gospel & God’s governance. (An outtake from The Work Of People films with Lisa coming out this Fall).
As Tim King wrote for Sojourners several months ago, even when he was a cash-poor twenty-something earning a small nonprofit salary while living in expensive Washington, DC, his education, stable housing, steady employment, and regular access to food meant he “was quickly approaching the 1 percent.”
The thing about Paul Simon's songwriting, a thing that he himself has expressed recently, is that you don't ever really know exactly what he's on about, but you know he's on to something. His latest album, "So Beautiful or So What" is all about God. I mean, it's right there in every song, and yet it took reading a write up by Cathleen Falsani of Sojourners in order for Simon to realize it. He was so amazed by her discovery that he called her. Paul Simon. Called her. To talk about his songs.