John Fife 6-05-2019

Scott Warren, a human rights volunteer facing criminal charges. Courtesy No More Deaths/Handout via REUTERS

Dr. Scott Warren is defending himself against three felony charges including conspiracy to transport and harbor migrants — charges that could add up to 20 years in prison.

6-05-2019

Removing Trump from power is a task central to the soul of the nation — and to the integrity of faith.

Engy Abdelkader 6-05-2019

Significantly, official restrictions on Muslim women’s dress don’t satisfy these basic requirements. From Belgium to Kazakhstan to Kenya, education is unavailable and inaccessible to students who choose attire that the government disfavors. If they are forced to pursue studies in private institutions with sometimes inferior resources, curricula, and instruction, then education is more likely to be unacceptable.

From Netflix's 'When They See Us'

I watched Ava DuVernay’s Netflix series When They See Us and found myself angered by the people and systems that had a role in the incarceration of five innocent boys. The Central Park Five, Raymond Santana, Kevin Richardson, Antron McCray, Yusef Saalam, and Korey Wise, were wrongfully convicted and later exonerated of a variety of charges related to the rape and assault of a white female jogger in 1989. While the series itself honors the stories of the Central Park Five, in choosing to title the series When They See Us, DuVernay invites us into a broader conversation on the criminalization and mass incarceration of young boys and girls of color, and challenges us to define our own role within this system.

Jim Wallis 5-31-2019

Special Counsel Robert Mueller makes a statement on his investigation into Russian interference in Washington, May 29, 2019. REUTERS/Jim Bourg

The “I” word, which Donald Trump calls it, is, of course, “impeachment” — the constitutional process of charging and, then in the Senate, convicting, a president for abusing the public trust and committing wrongdoing. The Constitution says that a president “shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” That is what is politically required — as the specifics for impeachment are ultimately politically decided. The other key word here is “crimes,” and who has the authority to conclude that they have been done by a president.

5-29-2019

In John 10:10, Jesus says "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly."

Gareth Higgins 5-28-2019

screenshot from Field of Dreams

The promise of Field of Dreams is that when we give ourselves to serving the common good at the place where our “deep gladness and the world’s hunger meet,” as Frederick Buechner writes, we don’t just help advance the healing of the people we touch, we also begin to heal our pain.

Karen E. Park 5-24-2019

My high school alma mater is not an anti-Semitic or Islamophobic school, as far as I know. But its mascot is.

Jamar A. Boyd II 5-24-2019

The student debt crisis in America is currently at its worst, making it more difficult for minorities, specifically African Americans, to attend four year colleges — especially private institutions as Morehouse College. It is estimated the average full-time tuition at Morehouse was $25,368 in the latest academic year. But with other expenses like room and board, books, and fees, the total can be above $48,000.

Image via REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha

Impeachment suggests charging a president with misconduct that would disqualify them from public office — that’s not what Filipinos as asking for. Unseating Dutarte from office implies that there is a need for people power — a movement to assert democracy and not merely hang ones hopes in a system that has been known to fail or serve only a few. Impeachment calls the government to act, “unseat” calls the general masses to protest and hold government accountable.

Jim Wallis 5-23-2019

Pro-life activist counter-demonstrates at a protest against anti-abortion legislation at the Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C., May 21, 2019. REUTERS/James Lawler Duggan

“Life” issues have once again become extremely politically divisive. Claiming to be either “for the women” or “for the babies,” turns empathy for only one life into single-issue voting on both sides of the political spectrum. Instead of reducing abortion access to a political football — and even into competing billboards on national highways — we all should seek to expand and deepen the conversation, especially Christians, who should not be beholden to right or left but rather to a consistent ethic of life for women and children.

Shane Claiborne 5-22-2019

Photo by Ye Jinghan on Unsplash

We weren’t meant to kill people. When we do kill, it does something to us. In writing my book Executing Grace, I interviewed a former executioner who told me how he was haunted by the spirits of the men he executed, whose souls visited him at night and sat by his bedside.

FILE PHOTO: President Donald Trump speaks at the National Association of Realtors' Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo in Washington, May 17, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

The Mueller report is all but forgotten — its limited focused also not remembered. Mueller’s assignment was to look only at Russian interference in the election and the possibility of a criminal conspiracy with the Trump campaign to assist this. Opponents of Trump labeled this “collusion.” Weeks before the report’s release, I argued that no such conspiracy would be found because none was needed. Putin detested Hillary and his apparatus of political infiltration was smart enough to know how to undermine her campaign. It did.

Joe Kay 5-21-2019

Photo by Akira Hojo on Unsplash

Our conversations about the many challenges confronting us — poverty, immigration, racism, sexism, environmental destruction — must always begin with an acknowledgement of our shared responsibility to care for God’s people and God’s creation.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) temporary facilities for housing migrants are seen in Donna, Texas, U.S., May 15, 2019. REUTERS/Loren Elliott

Hunger strikes allow detained immigrants to regain their agency while simultaneously throwing themselves on the mercy of the very institution that has oppressed them.

Gareth Higgins 5-17-2019

Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen in The Long Shot. Photo via Long Shot Movie on Facebook.

There are moments in Long Shot, the new comedy in which Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen fall for each other, save the country from dehumanizing polarization, and (maybe) the planet from dehumanized humans, in which I wondered if I was watching something as good as Tootsie. It’s really easy to make a slapstick joke, but really hard to integrate dozens of them into a coherent work (there’s a reason the Marx Brothers don’t have many heirs); and it’s even harder to weave comic tropes into a story that also manages to feel like real life.

Adam Joyce 5-17-2019

C.J. Hawking Speaks To YMCA Workers On Unfair Labor Practice Strike. Image via Youtube

Rev. C.J. Hawking, Executive Director of Arise Chicago, has worked at the intersection of faith and organized labor for over 30 years. Arise Chicago helps organize religious communities in support of union campaigns and advocates for workers’ rights and dignity in the workplace. For Rev. Hawking, the co-author of Staley: The Fight for the New American Labor Movement, this activism is an essential part of her faith and the church’s call to be faithful to the gospel. I recently had the opportunity to talk with Rev. Hawking about Arise Chicago’s work, and how churches can support the labor movement in their fight for workplace democracy and a more equitable economic order.

Adam R. Taylor 5-16-2019

Students attend a protest to demand action on climate change, in Piazza del Popolo, Rome, Italy April 19, 2019. REUTERS/Yara Nardi

Seemingly every week a new major report comes out sounding the alarm about the escalating crisis of climate change. You may have missed two of these from just this past week that join a drumbeat that often causes me to lose sleep as I worry about the future that my 6- and 8-year-old sons will inherit. First, on Saturday the sensors at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii indicated that concentrations of the greenhouse gas has reached 415 parts per million (ppm), which means that for every 1 million molecules of gas in the atmosphere, 415 are made up of carbon dioxide. This means that even if we manage to move rapidly toward renewable energy and use other measures to help stanch the steady flow of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, the next generation will likely be saddled with permanent negative consequences of our artificially elevated levels of CO2. Also last week, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (I.P.B.E.S.), a research arm of the United Nations, told the world that we may be on our way to losing as many as a million plant and animal species. The 1,000-plus page report details the effects of climate change on marine and other wildlife and emphasizes like never before the devastating impact of biodiversity loss to humans.

Amy Fallas 5-16-2019

An injured member of Zion Church, which was bombed on Easter Sunday, cries as she prays at a community hall in Batticaloa, Sri Lanka, May 5, 2019. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui

While the Trump administration has been vocal about confronting religious persecution for global Christians, many of its domestic and foreign policies only serve to exacerbate the conditions that make Christians in these regions more vulnerable. The Iraqi Christian Chaldean community in the United States has been susceptible to deportations in the aftermath of Trump’s executive orders. The “Muslim travel ban” has done little for Christian migrants and other vulnerable religious communities from nations now under travel restrictions to the United States.

Kevin Singer 5-15-2019

REUTERS/Leah Millis

Pence clearly scratched an itch for the crowd that gave him a standing ovation and loud chants of “U-S-A” after he was introduced. His words were also a familiar refrain in the white evangelical community. According to a 2017 study by the Public Religion Research Institute, white evangelical Protestants were the only religious group more likely to believe Christians face discrimination compared to Muslims.