This Month's Cover

Sojourners Magazine: August 2011

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Mohandas Gandhi was keenly aware of the root causes of hunger, and he knew that the problem was not a lack of resources on God’s good earth. "There is enough for everyone's need," Gandhi said, "but not for everyone's greed."ECHO, a broad-based Christian organization in Florida, understands that principle. The group aims not just to eradicate perpetual hunger, as Fred Bahnson explains in this issue, but to help people all over the world develop the tools to live abundantly. As an ECHO staff member put it, "Redemption doesn't just start after we die. We can begin to experience life in all its abundance right here on earth."As Old Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann recently explained, faith in God’s bounty is the opposite of the myth that one can be self-sufficient. "Abundance narratives demand a firm grounding in a conviction about the reliability of God’s generous creation," Brueggemann told a conference in San Antonio this spring. "The earth is blessed. God intended the world to produce abundance."Koinonia Farm in Georgia has been practicing a theology of abundance for almost 70 years. Koinonia has stood as a beacon of gritty love and audacious peacemaking since its founding in the 1940s by Florence and Clarence Jordan, author of the Cotton Patch version of the New Testament. As Melissa Aberle-Grasse explains in "Growing Together," over the last decade Koinonia has experienced a renaissance, agriculturally and spiritually, thanks to a renewed commitment not only to permaculture but to the prophetic, community-based vision of the Jordans. Turns out, for the folks at Koinonia, sustainable farming and life in community are rooted in the same thing: faith in God's abundant love.

Cover Story

In the new South Africa, the future is speaking in the voices of the girls.


Around the world, religious freedom is under threat -- but people of faith continue to reach across divides.
How a Florida nonprofit is nurturing the abundant life, one rooftop at a time.
Koinonia Farm has seen a renewal of community life -- and a new, sustainable approach to the land.
How humor can help sustain the work of social justice.


Walmart's new urban strategy comes with a lousy track record.
Hiroshima and Fukushima remind us that civilian and military nuclear technology go hand in hand.
The B Corporation model puts social and environmental responsibility into companies' legal DNA.


The fate of the 21st century will be decided by civic leader-to-civic leader relations in a global context.
My "life plan" -- at age 23 -- was to own little and to move where the Spirit led.
So now we know why over the past few years our Internet service would sometimes slow to a crawl: Osama bin Laden was tying up the circuits Googling himself. Repeatedly.
It's a consistent storyline in the media, involving powerful men in politics, sports, business, and religion: Men behave with utter disregard for the dignity and humanity of women -- using and abusing them at will, and acting as if they believe that they are entitled to do so.

Culture Watch

How do we find ourselves and God in the midst of media overload?
Director Greg Barker on the making of 'Koran by Heart.'
The award for most surprisingly profound film of 2011 might go to Bridesmaids. This story of a woman trying to figure out her path in the midst of witness
One.Life: Jesus Calls, We Follow, by Scot McKnight. Zondervan.
How strange sightings, the Cold War, and the national security state add up to a truth we'll never know.


Re: Carolyn McKinstry's "From Mourning to Gladness" (May 2011): Birmingham Sunday spurred many African Americans and European Americans to get involved in the civil rights movement.
Regarding Elizabeth Palmberg's article on healthcare costs ("Sky High and Rising," June 2011): I've been under the impression that a lot of our high medical costs are related to the restricted number of doctors.
Mohandas Gandhi was keenly aware of the root causes of hunger, and he knew that the problem was not a lack of resources on God’s good earth.
In "The Gospel According to the Tea Party" (November 2010), Jim Wallis overlooked points.
During Ordinary time, the season after Pentecost, it might appear that not much is going on, ecclesially speaking.
David Cortright's "Finding the Way Out" (March 2011), about why it's time to end the war in Afghanistan, was excellent and timely with one exception -- his appeal to the just war doctrine.
(for Daniel Berrigan on his ninetieth birthday)