Syrian immigrant serving up food for the homeless in Moncton, New Brunswick

A Syrian immigrant in New Brunswick is giving back to the community he now calls home by helping those who need it most. Elias was brought from Syria to Moncton by his brother-in-law eight years ago. Since arriving in the Maritimes, he has opened three businesses including a restaurant in the city’s downtown. For two hours every day, Elias offers hot food to the homeless at zero cost. He says helping the homeless is his way of saying thank you to the community that welcomed him with open arms.

Source: Syrian immigrant serving up food for the homeless in Moncton | CTV Atlantic News

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There’s got to be a better way to engage Jesus’ teachings in the 21st century

We don’t have to push each other away. We can actually come together in our differences. We come together to practice connection, contemplation, critical thinking, creativity, and compassionate action for the common good. Our gatherings emphasize building friendships over a meal and having deep conversations about topics that transform the way we see the world while inspiring us all to live peacefully with more beauty, wholeness, passion, urgency, and love.

The Way Collective is a new movement in Santa Barbara, CA, and is a community for people looking to unite by living well for the common good in an increasingly divisive world.

Source: Way Collective

 

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I am Mennonite, and we are Racist

“Segregation is one face of racism. The Mennonite tradition perpetuates through family. It shows charity to the outsider, but does not necessarily allow the outsider to be included unless they assimilate into everything – the faith, the culture, the family traditions. Despite being a people who endlessly preach peace and justice, who claim to be fighting against the evils of prejudice, most of us aren’t even aware how complicit we are with our own racism. I need transformation. We all do.”

Source: I am Mennonite, and we are Racist | Pastors in Exile

Pastors in Exile (PiE) is an Anabaptist-rooted movement of community pastors outside of church walls. We believe that church is evolving into something beyond just a specific community in a specific place at a specific time. Everyone who seeks to join God’s loving and transforming work in the world is invited to be a pastor in exile with us.

Follow them on Twitter at: @pastorsinexile.

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Democrats need to become more religiously literate and faith-friendly

“Democrats need to become more religiously literate and faith-friendly. We religious progressives often feel ignored and abandoned by a Democratic Party that seems indifferent to our religious traditions. As an evangelical advocate for social justice, I have fought right-wing religious fundamentalism my whole life. But the secular fundamentalism of the left is not much better — and it certainly does not help garner votes at election time. The utmost respect for ‘the other’ is required now, especially with a strong commitment to defend each other’s faith and to protect others’ lives that are now under attack in the United States — partly inspired by the rhetoric of President Trump.” — Jim Wallis

Source: Bernie Sanders got Christian theology wrong | TheRecord.com

Jim Wallis is a Christian writer and political activist. He is best known as the founder and editor of Sojourners magazine and as the founder of the Washington, D.C.-based Christian community of the same name.

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Many faith leaders join the March for Science

“We think both religion and science teach humility, and that we are part of something larger. We believe we have a moral obligation to take care of the Earth and to care for each other. And science can help service that.” — Rev. Brian Sauder

See: Faith groups backing march see an ally in science

Brian Sauder grew up in a deeply religious Anabaptist community in rural Illinois. Now a minister in Chicago, Sauder is just one of many faith leaders who are planning to join the March for Science, and see little conflict between faith and science. He is the executive director of a Chicago-based nonprofit called Faith in Place, which works with faith communities across Illinois to promote environmental justice and sustainability. Follow him on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/briansauder

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Christians must create and nurture culture, not just complain about it

“Even more important for Christians than being on the front lines of the culture war is participating in the culture—and better yet, helping to create and nurture it. If the main contribution that Christians make to culture is complaining about it, we’re doing something wrong. Christians and the arts community start by learning to look at each other as potential allies, even friends, instead of as sworn enemies.” — Eric Metaxas

See: Eric Metaxas: Christians Must Contribute to Culture, Not Just Complain About It

Eric Metaxas is an American author, speaker, and radio host. He is known for two biographies, Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery about William Wilberforce and Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy about Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Follow him on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/ericmetaxas

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The Christian intellectual tradition is alive and well

“Whether inside or outside of church communities, the continued strength of religious publishing and the internet’s radical democratization of information offer broad access to a range of Christian thinkers who are intellectuals, if not scholars.” — Jacob Lupfer

Jacob Lupfer is a frequent commentator on religion in American politics and culture. Lupfer has worked in parish ministry and has taught at the middle school, high school, community college, and university levels. Follow him on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/jlupf

See: The Christian intellectual tradition is alive and well

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An Invitation to Justice from The Justice Conference

Esteemed Old Testament scholar, Dr. Walter Brueggemann gives insight into the nature of justice and offers you an invitation to participate.

One of the misfortunes in the long history of the church is that we have mistakenly separated love of God from love of neighbor, and always they are held together in prophetic poetry.  Covenant members who practice justice and righteousness are to be active advocates for the vulnerable and the marginal and the people without resources, and that then becomes the way to act out and exhibit one’s love of God.  So, love of God gets translated into love of vulnerable neighbor.  The doing of justice is the prophetic invitation to do what needs to be done to enable the poor and the disadvantaged and the neglected to participate in the wealth and resources of the community.  Injustice is the outcome of having skewed neighborly processes so that some are put at an unbearable disadvantage.  And the Gospel invitation is that people intervene in that to correct those mistaken arrangements. — Walter Brueggemann

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Evangelical movement has forfeited moral authority

“The evangelical movement has, in my view, forfeited any future moral authority in American public life.” — Mark DeMoss

Mark DeMoss, a public relations executive with strong ties to the American evangelical community, resigned in the wake of disagreement with other executive committee members over his public criticism of President Jerry Falwell Jr.’s personal endorsement of Donald Trump. He had had been the chairman of the executive committee of Liberty University’s Board of Trustees. Liberty University is a private, non-profit Christian university affiliated with the Southern Baptist Conservatives of Virginia and located in Lynchburg, Virginia. DeMoss also served as a senior advisor for Mitt Romney’s 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns.

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