Budget

When I first visited Ethiopia at the height of the 1984 famine, I watched as twenty-four people died of starvation in less than fifteen minutes, right in front of my eyes. Barely five years into my career as a Congressman, nothing my staff told me beforehand could have prepared me for what I saw on that trip.

Gasping at awful photographs of unspeakable human suffering is one thing; bearing firsthand witness to human suffering is another thing entirely. Glancing at a picture of a starving child in the newspaper, you can always turn away, but when you're staring into the eyes of a mother who has just lost that child, it's a completely different story. There's no looking the other way.

That's why I often describe those first Ethiopia experiences as my "converting ground" on issues of global hunger. What happened in Ethiopia changed me, and changed how an entire generation looks at hunger.

It's also why I'm currently back on the Horn of Africa, reporting on the ground from the Dadaab refugee camp in eastern Kenya, less than fifty miles from the Somali border. And I am appealing to my affluent brothers and sisters in the United Stated and around the world not to look away. We need your help.

Eugene Cho 8-09-2011

Some sources have stated that more than 12 million people are being impacted by the worst drought and famine in the region of the Horn of Africa in 60 years.

12 million people.

How do you wrap your head around such a number?

12,000,000

You begin with one.

The World Food Programme, for example, has shared that they can provide a nutritious meal for one person for .17

1100808-markhatfieldMark O. Hatfield's political witness shaped a whole generation of students, teachers, pastors, and social activists in the evangelical community and beyond. The voice of Christians today who plead for social justice and peaceful alternatives to war would not have emerged with its strength and clarity in the 1970s without his leadership. His death underscores the vacuum of such spiritually rooted voices uncompromising in their commitments to peace and justice within the cacophony political rhetoric today.

One of my life's greatest privileges and joys was to work as an assistant to Senator Mark O. Hatfield for nearly a decade, from 1968 to 1977. I saw first-hand what courageous leadership, combined with unswerving compassion and civility, looked like within the political life of that turbulent and formative era. Those experiences are shared in my book, Unexpected Destinations (Eerdmans).

Kimberly Burge 7-27-2011

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

Chuck Collins 7-15-2011

Bahamasphoto © 2010 John Hilliard | more info (via: Wylio)
As Christians concerned about poverty, it is time to turn our full attention to the injustices of an "offshore tax system" that enables corporations and the wealthy to dodge taxes and impoverish countries around the world.

As members of Congress in the United States debate deep and painful budget cuts, people of faith should raise our voices against an unfair system that enables profitable U.S. corporations to dodge taxes, depleting an estimated $100 billion from the U.S. Treasury each year. Instead of cutting $1 trillion over the next decade from programs that assist the poor and ensure greater opportunity, we should eliminate these destructive tax gimmicks.

Recent reports show that aggressive tax dodgers such as General Electric, Boeing, and Pfizer, avoid billions in taxes a year. They use accounting gymnastics to pretend they are making profits in offshore subsidiaries incorporated in low- or no-tax countries like the Cayman Islands, thereby reducing their tax obligations in the United States. This system is unfair to domestic businesses that have to compete on an un-level playing field.

Timothy King 7-13-2011

As the federal debt ceiling standoff threatens to cause an economic catastrophe for our nation, more than 4,000 pastors across the country are opposing proposed immoral budget cuts that harm the most vulnerable people in their congregations and communities. An open letter to Congress and the president ran today as a full page ad in Politico. (You can view the ad and full list of signers here.) We were amazed by the huge response this letter generated. We hoped to find 1,000 pastors willing to speak out with us, and in just 2 weeks more than 4,000 clergy joined our campaign.

Jim Wallis 6-15-2011

Tough choices are now upon us -- but they must be smart, courageous, and compassionate. 

Theresa Cho 6-13-2011

I recently wrote a blog about how to kill a dying church, asking questions about what to do with so many churches dying. I think the challenge is recognizing the signs that a church is dying. The problem is that churches tend to wither, which is a slow, gradual, and often subtle process. It is difficult to pinpoint when in the withering process it is time to take action, to make changes, and to make some vital decisions. While there are many reasons for a church dying, here are some practical observations that I have noticed in my experience. This list is certainly not exhaustive. It is also a list that my congregation has personally had to face, so I give examples of how my congregation has addressed these issues.

Jim Wallis 5-31-2011

Ben & Jerry's co-founder Ben Cohen talks with Jim Wallis about ice cream, Oreos -- and how the bloated military budget is destro

Ben & Jerry's co-founder Ben Cohen talks with Jim Wallis about ice cream, Oreos -- and how the bloated military budget is destroying our economy and making us all less secure. 

Jim Wallis 4-28-2011
Yesterday, the leaders of more than 50 Christian denominations and organizations drew a line in the sand of the budget debate, and asked our political leaders to do the same.
Evan Trowbridge 4-27-2011
Piercing through the bitter, partisan bickering regarding the nation's budget, an unprecedented and diverse group of Christian leaders announced today the forming of a Circle of Protection agains
Jim Wallis 4-21-2011
On Easter weekend, I will break my fast. I will have spent almost four weeks drinking only liquids. But, as is often true of fasts, what has been gained is far greater than anything given up.
The gospel according to the movie True Grit (2010) is as follows: "You must pay for everything in this world one way or another.
Jeannie Choi 4-13-2011

As artist and musician Moby states at the beginning of the video below, the Republicans have put forth a budget that gives tax breaks to big corporations and to millionaires, but hurts veterans, the elderly, children, and women.

Jim Wallis 3-29-2011
Yesterday morning, Tony Hall, David Beckmann, Ritu Sharma, and I began a water fast because of what I call "selectively cruel" budget
Jeannie Choi 3-18-2011

Here's a little round up of links from around the Web you may have missed this week:

Debra Dean Murphy 3-16-2011
As Americans were complaining about all the snow this winter, arguing about the http://thehill.com/blogs/on-the-money/budget/147615-senate-republicans-i..." ta
Diana Butler Bass 3-08-2011
As the stand off between workers and Governor Scott Walker continues in Wisconsin, http://www.wichurches.org/advocacy/faith-community-response-to-the-wisco..." target="_bla
Aaron Taylor 2-23-2011
I'll be honest, I've been pretty disgusted with the callousness of our national discourse, how so many politicians, including Democrats, seem all too eager to balance state and federal

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