Duane Shank 9-01-1998
Power politics vs. the poor
Joe Nangle 7-01-1998

Some days ago I received an unexpected call from Lima, Peru. A brother Franciscan there told me that Olga Valencia had died and, knowing of my friendship with her, he had attended the funeral. The news brought a flood of memories.

It's hard to pinpoint my first encounter with Olga. Surely it had to do with some request of hers for help—work, food, a handout. For she was the quintessential Third World mother, continually asking, begging, cajoling those of us in positions of privilege for charity on her own behalf and that of her numerous offspring. I must confess that in those early years she struck me as a whining, bothersome, pestering person, whom I tended to dispatch as quickly as possible.

One day her oldest child, 9-year-old Jose, was killed by a hit-and-run driver. It took Olga four days to bury him, and I walked alongside her during those terrible hours. From a halting investigation of the accident, to a still more halting autopsy in the city morgue, to a funeral director who wanted his money up front, to dealing with the accused driver—everything stood in the way of Olga's burying little Jose with dignity.

In the end, out of desperate necessity (no embalming in Peru) this mother, her husband, and I took Jose's body to the paupers' graveyard and buried him there. Then I drove them home, sat with them for a while, and left them to pick up once again the threads of their miserable existence. That day forever changed my relationship with Olga, and in some ways forever changed me.

Duane Shank 5-01-1998
Communities pitch in to help people out of poverty.
Carol Fennelly 5-01-1998
An effort to protect churches' public ministries.
Carol Welch 5-01-1998
Who profits from the Asia bailouts?
Marie Dennis 5-01-1998
The worldwide movement for debt relief is rooted in Jubilee.
Barbara Howell 3-01-1998
The rolls are down, but hunger is up.
Duane Shank 3-01-1998
Building a movement to overcome poverty.
Jim Wallis 1-01-1998

Several notes and e-mails commented on the mention of my then wife-to-be in my column last month.

How will your community participate in the second annual "Pentecost to Overcome Poverty"?
Vicki Kemper 12-01-1988

Ponder for a moment the following factsabout poverty in our world today. 

Jim Wallis 11-01-1988

The so-called economic recovery has been painfully selective.

Jim Wallis 10-01-1987

The Iran-contra hearings have provided a summer-long opportunity for Reagan administration spokespersons to make their case for the contras on national television.

John Dear 8-01-1987

What you hear in the whispers, proclaim from the housetops.
--Matthew 10:27

The children really are our future.

Joyce Hollyday 3-01-1986

A biblical perspective on women and poverty.

A call from the Taize community: make the church a parable of sharing and it will play its part in healing the wounds of the human family.

Clark H. Pinnock 5-01-1974

Our text draws an important connection between the fullness of the Spirit and the impulse to minister to the poor and unfortunate. This is the Acts connection.