Hearts & Minds

Jim Wallis 8-10-2015

ONLY SOCIAL MOVEMENTS really change history. Developing, nurturing, and supporting a new generation of leaders is central to the long-term success of these movements. As leaders like me get older and look to the future, mentoring young leaders is particularly important. More and more of my time is spent doing that mentoring, not only broadly but in relationship to particularly promising young leaders whom I have met. It is some of the most important and enjoyable work that I do.

For many years, Sojourners called together large conferences on biblical justice and peace. Thousands of people came year after year, and many positive things happened—new relationships, connections, projects, and organizations—even marriages and families! Now, several other groups are having justice and peace conferences, which is exactly the kind of “competition” Sojourners has always hoped for.

Last year, some of our younger staff came up with a great idea—to have a leadership “Summit” for people already providing leadership for the biblical vision of justice and peace. All the participants would have to be nominated by credible leaders doing this work, and instead of Justice 101 with big speakers and standing ovations, this would become a new, creative environment for moving justice agendas forward—Justice 202. We didn’t publicly advertise these gatherings—instead, the invitation spread by word of mouth as leaders, especially younger ones, were drawn together by experienced justice leaders who nominated them.

Jim Wallis 7-10-2015
Islamaphobia

Yorda / Shutterstock

IT'S BEEN A difficult few months to be a Muslim living in the United States. Amid the continuing violence in the Middle East and the polarized debate over the Iran nuclear negotiations, Islamophobia in the U.S. is just about as bad as it’s ever been.

While this fear, distrust, and even hatred of Islam and/or Muslims takes many forms and gains traction in a number of ways (as Ken Chitwood explains in his article on page 22), it’s important to understand that Islamophobia gains much of its power and attention from a relatively small number of people who have dedicated their lives and careers to perpetuating a distorted, extreme view of what Islam teaches and what most Muslims believe. It is in fact a tragic irony that professional Islamophobes and Islamic extremists such as the so-called “Islamic State” perpetuate and benefit from a very similar and very warped interpretation of Islam. Both seek to convince the world that many Muslims in the U.S. and around the world either share or should share this radical fundamentalist perspective.

Purveyors of strident hate speech against Muslims and those that embrace violent extremism in the name of Islam actually benefit from each other’s existence and actions. The American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI) is the group behind the anti-Muslim ads on public transportation in several major cities. This spring, AFDI sponsored a contest in Garland, Texas, where participants were invited to “draw the prophet” Muhammad. The contest was attacked by two radicalized ISIS sympathizers, who were shot dead by police.

Jim Wallis 6-08-2015

The Cold War may have come and gone, but its legacy lives on. 

Jim Wallis 5-06-2015

The Bible calls us to create multiracial communities of faith. 

Jim Wallis 4-01-2015

The 2016 election is an oppourtunity for a new dialouge on eliminating extreme poverty, at home and abroad. 

Jim Wallis 3-04-2015

As servants of a Lord who was tortured to death, we must commit to healing the wounds we have inflicted. 

Jim Wallis 2-03-2015

There is no "symmetry" in the violence of the Middle East today. 

Jim Wallis 1-05-2015

Congressional leaders on both sides must be convinced to put people above party. 

Jim Wallis 12-08-2014

Our mission was, is, and always will be centered in Jesus Christ. 

Jim Wallis 11-05-2014

We cannot undermine or defeat a group that we do not understand. 

Jim Wallis 10-06-2014

I eagerly await to see where the "rainbow generation" will take South Africa. 

Jim Wallis 8-04-2014

"When I claim to be a Christian, it should be a radical statement."

Jim Wallis 7-07-2014

Vincent Harding, photo by Ryan Rodrick Beiler

Vincent's warmth lifted the temperatures of those around him.

Jim Wallis 6-03-2014

Glen Stassen

In everything he did, Glen sought to bring Christian ethics to public life.

Jim Wallis 5-09-2014

Christ's upside-down kingdom offers a different and subversive message: Lose your life and you'll find it.

Jim Wallis 4-01-2014

As a Christian, I grieve over the unspeakable violence wrongly done in the name of faith.

Jim Wallis 3-05-2014

Changing the world requires the leadership of women.

Jim Wallis 1-30-2014

We are all neighbors now, whether we like it or not.

Jim Wallis 1-03-2014

We give thanks for how he turned righteous anger into the power of reconciliation.

Jim Wallis 12-09-2013

From "12 Years a Slave"

When racism is tolerated, the reconciling work of Christ on the cross is contradicted.

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