A New Year's Prayer for Christian Peacemakers

Last year, my wife Jeanette and I returned to Honduras with a group from our congregation. What alarmed me was that a decade ago the MS (La Mara Salvatrucha) had a considerable presence in many of the poorest neighborhoods. Now they have a stronghold. One of my pastor friends told me, "Gabriel, people are afraid to come to church. The MS killed a woman in front of the church just the other day." The MS is going global. Recently Law & Order had an episode that featured the MS [...]

Christmas in the Trenches

We first published this reflection by Jim Wallis in 2002. It has since become our Christmas tradition, kind of our own Charlie Brown Christmas special, if you will. With the ongoing conflicts raging during each passing year, it remains tragically relevant.

Silent Night, by Stanley Weintraub, is the story of Christmas Eve, 1914, on the World War I battlefield in [...]

Soldier Suicides: Counting the Forgotten Casualties of War

After more than six years of field exercises in some of the most grueling weather our country offers, I am rarely affected by even the most chilling winter rains. Months of accumulated time in the forests of North Carolina, the deserts of California, and the wetlands of Louisiana - training for war has built up in me a bit of immunity to succumbing to the shivers. However, there is one thing that [...]

Testimonies of Terror

While volunteering in a legal clinic in my sophomore year of college, interviewing people applying for political asylum in the U.S., I heard a lot of people describe how they had had to leave everything behind and flee into the jungle, carrying children on their backs.

I interviewed lots of people and read the personal statements of cases already filed, and all the stories were sickeningly similar. The [...]