September-October 1998

Cover Story

Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice
Clergy in the Twin Cities are making economic justice a priority
Suggestions and questions to encourage faithful engagement with labor issues.
Baldemar Velasquez settles in for the long haul on behalf of cucumber pickers in the South.
Only the rank and file can bring real and lasting change.
Why New York churches are resisting workfare.
From City Council to Rodeo Drive: campaigning for a living wage in Los Angeles.
The Detroit-based monthly newsletter Labor Notes has emerged as the networking center for the labor reform movement.
Support grows for a shorter work week.
Even church institutions can lose sight of human needs.
For a century and a half, workers and church people have organized together.
Since its founding in 1994, the People of Faith Network has organized targeted campaigns to educate religious people about the conditions under which the clothes they buy are made.
There is a key spiritual gift that the church may bring to labor struggle: pastoral care.
Seminarians are learning about another aspect of church members' lives.
Looking for information on strikes, boycott lists, religious statements on worker issues, stories of labor movement heroes, or watchdog information on corporations?
Why the church and the labor movement belong together.
AFL-CIO president John J. Sweeney talks about his priorities.
Despite anti-union violence, the United Farm Workers persevere in organizing strawberry pickers.


Northern Ireland lurches toward peace.
Southern Baptists and the subordination of women
The HMO system cries out for reform.
Power politics vs. the poor
Sadly, kids killing kids isn't anything new.
This morning's Washington Post said it is a "workers' market." A booming U.S.


Morning in Washington, D.C.
This summer I taught two weeklong courses, one in western Canada and one in the American Southwest.
At midnight on May 21, I fell to the floor screaming when I learned that Krista Hunt Ausland, my best friend for 24 years, had plunged to her death in a bus accident in Bolivia.
Jesus' words as he wept over Jerusalem are probably more compelling today than ever: "If this day you only knew the ways that make for peace..." (Luke 19:42).
Put aside the Holy Scriptures for a while and read God's first revelation—nature itself. Such was the advice offered some years ago by a profound, Christian thinker.

Culture Watch

A PBS documentary takes a personal look.
An evangelical primer on decisive moments
Music has many functions, worship included. But one of its primary roles is its ability to move people.
A library of progressive politics
Eugene Peterson's approach to spiritual growth.
Carrie Newcomer's My True Name
When I began writing this column, way back in the second Reagan term, I held a certain spirit of optimism about the possibilities of American popular culture
During every presidential election since George McGovern's failed bid in 1972, I have argued that progressives could build a successful coalition and reassert authority.
What can we learn from these films?
The intimacy and poignancy of writing letters.


Casa Juliana, a community dedicated to simple living, environmental sustainability, and social justice.
I WOULD LIKE to respond to the for- and-against articles regarding charitable choice in the July-August 1998 issue
Tens of millions of people were forcibly taken from their homes in Africa in the 17th and 18th centuries.
A day of preaching compassion to Congress
I AM GRATEFUL for Ann Monroe's reflection on Jack Miles' book, God: A Biography ("Honest to God," May-June 1998).
To be agents of the kingdom of God is a full-time occupation. It requires a whole-life commitment; it requires preparation and energy.
THANKS FOR YOUR article, "The Receiving End of Mission," May-June 1998 ("Life in Community," by Joe Nangle, OFM). It has given me the additional push to get through (or around) the roadblocks.
Sewer Pipes and Hope
I ENJOYED READING Bob Sabath's commentary "Cyberfaith, Politics, and Culture" (July-August 1998).
A basic principle of organizing is that a group of people with a common purpose can accomplish more than a single individual.
The sky shifts pinks of light through louvered fingers...
CHARITABLE CHOICE HAS little to do with choice and even less with charity.
I JUST FOUND the Sojourners Web page (thanks to the link from a like-minded magazine, Tikkun) and must say it was refreshing to see some Christians speak to the morality and kindnes
AS I READ the July-August issue I note with gratitude and not a little longing the leaving of two Sojourners' torch-bearers. I add my farewell to Joe Roos and Joyce Hollyday.
Tens of millions of people were forcibly taken from their homes in Africa in the 17th and 18th centuries.