The Common Good

by Jim Wallis
Faith leaders and all those who have spent years trying to fix our broken immigration system should feel gratitude toward President Obama. In a primetime address to the nation, the president announced he was taking executive action to relieve some of the suffering caused by the failures of the status quo.

Photo by Sandi Villarreal / Sojourners

It is challenging to hear these men tell their story, in particular because it runs so counter to the narrative we hold to in the West: that religion is superstition at best or a dangerous weapon at worst. Perhaps that is because we live in a culture of relative safety and peace, in which being inconvenienced often feels like suffering.

For better and for worse, the chance to highlight our own good deeds and heart for justice is currently just a status update away; as is our ability to idolize or demonize others under the banner of change. Eugene Cho is exploring and sharing guidelines for working with integrity, leading with reflections on his own public status.

It’s been said that one of the greatest tricks devil ever played was convincing most of the world he doesn’t exist. His greatest encore might be wrapping up vice in the midst of a big ball of virtue and letting the whole thing rot from the inside out.

 Image via Rosewater Facebook page.

Rosewater isn’t an emotional roller coaster that dares you to watch it. Instead, it’s a solid effort with a powerful message that’s cleverly conveyed. If anyone questioned that a late-night host of a fake news show could make a compelling political drama, viewing Rosewater should put those doubts to rest.

While protecting Christians must be a high priority — as many Iraqi Christians are fleeing into Jordan to escape ISIS — the situation should “not be viewed as Christians vs. Muslims, but as moderation vs. extremism.” He refers to those extremists, who use religion and hatred as weapons, as the “Ebolas of Ideology.”

On The Blog

  • Editor's Note: Thursday evening, President Barack Obama announced he is taking action to reform pieces of our broken immigration system. See Sojourners President Jim Wallis' recap here. Below are President Obama's remarks as prepared for delivery.
  • Mayor Michael Nutter announced the news Nov. 17, after the Vatican officially confirmed what has been rumored for months — that Pope Francis will visit the city in September 2015 for the eighth World Meeting of Families.
  • This is an open letter to Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon urging him to maintain peace and protect those exercising their right to free speech. I encourage you to read the letter and join me and others across the country in signing it now. Your voice can make a difference.
  • Saying “All Are Welcome” may reflect a genuine, well-meaning desire to reflect inclusivity. But in reality, this slogan seems to have lost its meaning. Here's why I've found it's hurting the church.
  • While punitive justice might be one way of thinking about justice, it’s not the dominant or prevailing understanding of justice promoted within most religious tradition of the world.
  • Though we no longer sacrifice to the gods or consult Oracles, I am afraid that we are still victim to the curse of knowing the end of things. I’m talking about the sense of inevitability that comes from politicians and generals who pronounce certain victory over our rivals.
  • One of the main minds behind Love Makes A Way is Perth-based radical Christian leader Jarrod McKenna. With his blond dreadlocks, casual vibe, and jokes about how Christians are “daggy,” he’s hardly the sanctimonious, Bible-bashing type. But when the subject of human rights and nonviolent resistance comes up, the charismatic McKenna becomes passionate, even evangelical.
  • The greatest gift Christianity has to offer is not in the condemnation of the choice to take one’s life but in the provision of a compelling alternative.

In The Magazine

Featured Blog Series

In this new blog series, we’ll look at how and why people of faith might choose to divest from fossil fuels as a response to climate change. Read the full series here