The Common Good

Blog Posts By God's Politics Editor

Posted by God's Politics Editor 43 weeks 3 days ago
"I don't know exactly what a prayer is. I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass, ... which is what I have been doing all day. Tell me, what else should I have done? Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon? Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your own wild and precious life?" - Mary Oliver Mary Oliver, "The Summer Day" + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 43 weeks 3 days ago
When the scribes of the Pharisees saw that he was eating with sinners and tax-collectors, they said to his disciples, ‘Why does he eat with tax-collectors and sinners?’ When Jesus heard this, he said to them, ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I have come to call not the righteous but sinners.’ - Mark 2:16-17 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 43 weeks 3 days ago
Lord, my thoughts turn in upon myself. Turn them upward to you and outward to your other children, that I may forget myself and lose all fear and anxiety, all self-seeking and self-consciousness, in worship of you and in love of others. O save me from myself to worship, love, and serve in perfect freedom. Amen. - Prayer by George Appleton
Posted by God's Politics Editor 43 weeks 6 days ago
Yesterday, before Republicans in the House of Representatives voted to push through a plan to slash nearly $40 billion from the food stamp program, Jim Wallis said we would keep an eye on which way of our elected officials voted."We will be watching who votes against feeding the hungry this week and will remember to bring that to public attention when they run for re-election. We will be doing our own faith count today. Stay tuned for the results."Well here are the results. The plan passed narrowly, 217-210 — with all the yea votes coming from the Republican side. Fifteen Republicans joined with the Democrats against the plan. So, who voted for that $40 billion cut to the food stamps program, which would kick an estimated 4 million hungry people out of the program next year? Here's your list. Is your Congress member on it?
Posted by God's Politics Editor 43 weeks 6 days ago
1. Shamed in Edina for Using Food Stamps Read this moving 'apology note' from one mom in Edina, Minn., an affluent Minneapolis suburb, to the woman behind her in line at the supermarket: "I did not observe you, but my daughter was with me packing the groceries and saw it all: 'EBT: Yeah, right,' you muttered, with that look of disgust that would have shattered someone feeling just a little bit of shame over needing food stamps."2. WATCH: The Most Beautiful, Haunting Infomercial You'll Ever See If you haven't caught the latest, "advertisement disguised as an anti-commercial animated short," check it out. With Fiona Apple on vocals covering "Pure Imagination" from Willy Wonka, the Chipotle ad / commentary against factory farming has drawn 4 million views on YouTube already.3. From the Mouths of Rapists: The Lyrics of Robin Thicke's 'Song of the Summer' Blurred Lines Warning: This post contains graphic descriptions of sexual assault.  Featuring images from Project Unbreakable — an online photo essay that features images of sexual assault survivors holding signs with sentences their rapists told them — The Society Pages breaks down popular, yet somewhat lyrically disturbing, song "Blurred Lines." 4. Pope Says Church is 'Obsessed' With Gays Abortion, and Birth Control Laurie Goodstein at the New York Times has the excerpts from Pope Francis' lengthy interview: “We have to find a new balance,” the pope continued, “otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel.”5. How Stop-and-Frisk is Creating a Generation of Young People Who Don't Trust the Police In interviews with New Yorkers age 18-25, only 40 percent said they would feel comfortable calling the police if they needed help and only 25 percent would report someone for committing a crime, The Atlantic Cities reports. 6. INFOGRAPHIC: 16 Mass Shootings Since Newtown You Haven't Heard About The definition of "mass shooting" is a shooting event in which four or more people other than the shooter are killed. Huffington Post collected information on 16 such incidents that have occurred across the country since December's horrific Newtwon, Conn., massacre. 7. The Language of Lament Diana at A Deeper Story reads all of our minds as we grieve another difficult week for our country. "It is lament that carries us directly into the presence of God when we are feeling furthest away; it is lament that addresses our unanswerable questions honestly, even profoundly; it is lament that opens the door to worship."8. Talking Sex With a Married Catholic Priest With Pope Francis' inclusive language and prioritization of love above divisiveness, many have speculated about possible changes to the Catholic Church's stance on priestly celibacy. Christian Piatt sat down with a married Catholic priest (who joined the priesthood from the Anglican clergy) to discuss the pope, celibacy, and more. 9. The Dramatic Rise of Life Without Parole, in 3 Charts From The Atlantic Cities: "Nationally, almost half (47.2 percent) of life-sentenced inmates are African American, though the black population of lifers reaches much higher in states such as Maryland (77.4 percent), Georgia (72.0 percent), and Mississippi (71.5 percent)."10. WATCH: Rick Warren on Guns, God, and Son's Tragic Death Shining a light both on mental illness and gun sales in the U.S., Rick Warren and his wife Kay sat down with CNN's Pierce Morgan to talk about their son, who took his own life in April. "“One of the hard things was forgiving the person who sold him the gun,” Rick Warren said. “Because I didn't want to forgive him.”
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 21 hours ago
"Just as a mother would not love a child better for its being turned into a model of perfection... but does love it the more deeply every time it tries to be good, so do I hope and believe our great [God] does not wait for us to be good and wise to love us, but loves us, and loves to help us in the very thick of our struggle." - Juliana Horatia Ewing + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 21 hours ago
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 21 hours ago
And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb: ‘Great and amazing are your deeds, Lord God the Almighty! Just and true are your ways, King of the nations! Lord, who will not fear and glorify your name? For you alone are holy.  All nations will come and worship before you, for your judgements have been revealed.’ - Revelation 15:3-4 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 21 hours ago
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 21 hours ago
Look down, God of mercies, at those unhappy families suffering from war and slaughter, from hunger and illness and other severe troubles. Spare them, O Lord, for it is truly a time of mercy. Amen. -- Saint Peter Canisius
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 21 hours ago
Look down, God of mercies, at those unhappy families suffering from war and slaughter, from hunger and illness and other severe troubles. Spare them, O Lord, for it is truly a time of mercy. Amen. -- Saint Peter Canisius
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 1 day ago
Today our prime educational objective must be to form [people]-for-others; [people] who will live not for themselves but for God and [God's] Christ — for the God-man who lived and died for all the world; [people] who cannot even conceive of love of God which does not include love for the least of their neighbors; [people] completely convinced that love of God which does not issue in justice for [people] is a farce. - Pedro Arrupe + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 1 day ago
Do not plan harm against your neighbor who lives trustingly beside you. Do not quarrel with anyone without cause, when no harm has been done to you. Do not envy the violent and do not choose any of their ways; - Proverbs 3:29-31 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 1 day ago
Source and goal of community, whose will it is that all your people enjoy fullness of life: may we be builders of community, caring for your good earth here and world-wide and as partners with the poor, signs of your ever friendly love; that we may delight in diversity and choose solidarity for you are in community with us our God forever. Amen. -Unknown
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 2 days ago
"We do not, after all, simply have experience; we are entrusted with it. We must do something--make something--with it. A story, we sense is the only possible habitation for the burden of our witnessing." - Patricia Hampl  Patricia Hampl, I Could Tell You Stories + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 2 days ago
Beloved, do not imitate what is evil but imitate what is good. Whoever does good is from God; whoever does evil has not seen God. - 3 John 1:11 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 2 days ago
From wherever my children have built their shelters, may their roads come in safety. May the forests and the brush stretch out their water-filled arms and shield their hearts. May their roads come in safety, may their roads be fulfilled. Amen. -- Zuni Prayer
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 3 days ago
"The beginning of love is the will to let those we love be perfectly themselves, the resolution not to twist them to fit our own image." - Thomas Merton Thomas Merton + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 3 days ago
Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. - Genesis 1:3-5 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 3 days ago
 Lord God, take my hand. It's me, begging you to take my hand. Just for today. Lift me up into the light of your love, so that I may see the reflection of my face in yours. Restore me to sanity. Fill me with your grace. Amen. -- "A Prayer for the Hardest of Times"
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 6 days ago
 "Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it." - Helen Keller  Helen Keller + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 6 days ago
All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need.  - Acts 2:44-45 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 6 days ago
Lord, we weep with those who weep and refuse to be consoled. May our tears mix with yours in a river of justice, flowing down like mighty waters, transforming the world that is into one that ought to be. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 44 weeks 6 days ago
1. My Year of ModestyWhat happens when you decide to live as if appearances really don’t matter? One woman’s quest to find out.2. The First Victim of September 11A fascinating portrait of the first person killed on September 11, 2001 — whom, as it happens, was an entrepreneur trained to combat terrorism.3. Which Niebuhr, President Obama?In 2007, the President professed his love for Christian ethicist Rienhold Niebuhr. But it’s Rienhold’s younger brother, H. Richard, whose argument for self-reflective “moral inactivity” has particular implications for the President on Syria.4. Letter to the Editor, from the PopePope Francis discussed his own faith in a letter written in response to editorials by the atheist founder of an Italian newspaper. The Pope also addressed themes of God’s mercy and Christian relations with Jews.5. This Is a Complete List of Wall Street CEOs Prosecuted for Their Role in the Financial CrisisThe Washington Post's Wonkblog hitches a ride on the lists-as-blog-posts train, featuring Homer Simpson...and a twist. Read up on what’s happened to Wall Street’s CEOs in the wake of the financial crisis.6. Learning Life Lessons from an ObituaryEver wondered what people will say about you when you enter eternal life? The family of Mary Agnes Mullaney honored her memory by passing along her love of life in this obituary.7. The Ups and Downs of Fighting for Gender EqualityLaura Barton of The Guardian reflects on Harvard Business School's nurturing of female students. Bottom line: while there have been great improvements in equality, we've still got a long way to go. 8. Syria's 99 percent: The Problem with Focusing on Chemical WeaponsIf Assad agrees to forsake sarin, how can we intervene if he continues to slaughter civilians while technically playing by our rules?9. Smoking Spells High Cost Under Affordable Care ActAs the Affordable Care Act comes closer to going into effect, tobacco use is one provision that raises costs for people under the new plan. “Tobacco disproportionately targets low-income communities.”10. Obama, Seacrest, and Our War Against IndifferenceIt might not surprise you that despite wars and rumors of war, many of us are more concerned that our favorite TV shows may be interrupted by breaking news from the President. Brian Konkol argues that this indifference to indifference is one of our major spiritual challenges today.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 21 hours ago
 "In violence we forget who we are." - Mary McCarthy  Mary McCarthy, On the Contrary + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 21 hours ago
The bows of the mighty are broken, but the feeble gird on strength. Those who were full have hired themselves out for bread, but those who were hungry are fat with spoil. The barren has borne seven, but she who has many children is forlorn. - 1 Samuel 2:4-5 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 21 hours ago
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 1 day ago
"No matter how big a nation is, it is no stronger that its weakest people, and as long as you keep a person down, some part of you has to be down there to hold [that person] down, so it means you cannot soar as you might otherwise." - Marian Anderson Marian Anderson + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 1 day ago
 I lift my eyes to the hills — from where will my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. - Psalm 121:1-2 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 1 day ago
Give us, O God, a vision of your world as your love would make it; a world whose different people and cultures live in tolerance and mutual respect; a world where peace is built with justice, and justice is fired with love. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 2 days ago
On The Ground Put prayers on the ground, so many prayers that not a drop of blood can  find its way to the  earth, not a drop can leach into the soil or soul. Put your prayers on the ground. Make a place for God to walk among the horrors and  hopes. There  you will  find us standing in his wake,  knee deep in invocations   and possibilities. - Belle Fox-Matin Belle Fox-Martin + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 2 days ago
As for God, His way is blameless; The word of the LORD is tested; He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him. For who is God, besides the LORD? And who is a rock, besides our God? - 2 Samuel 22:31-32 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 2 days ago
God, grant us the faith to turn to you in prayer, and to seek your presence in our lives. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 3 days ago
A man is truly ethical only when he obeys the compulsion to help all life which he is able to assist, and shrinks from injuring anything that lives. - Albert Schweitzer Albert Schweitzer + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 3 days ago
Do not be a terror to me; You are my refuge in the day of disaster. - Jeremiah 17:17 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 3 days ago
Dear God, we lift up our elected officials. During this time of difficult and serious decision making, we pray that you put a spirit of civility and reconciliation into the hearts of those called to lead our country. Give them discernment, humility, empathy, and willingness to put the common good above politics. Amen.  
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 6 days ago
The most eloquent prayer is the prayer through hands that heal and bless. - Billy Graham Billy Graham + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 6 days ago
Consider the blameless, observe the upright; there is a future for the man of peace. - Psalm 37:37 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 6 days ago
God of peace, be a light to all people, especially those suffering in the pain and darkness of war. Soften the hearts of those who harm others, give perseverance to those in conflict, and grant wisdom and compassion to all in positions of leadership worldwide. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 45 weeks 6 days ago
1. When It's Too Big (A Reflection on Syria) Sometimes, all there is left to do is pray. Rachel Held Evans offers her prayer and an incredibly open lament in this piece on her blog.2. Seeing a Woman: A Conversation Between a Father and Son From Nate Pyle. Parents of boys: go ahead and put this one up on your fridge. "[A woman''s body] will not make you do stupid things. If you do stupid things it is because you chose to do stupid things. So don’t contribute to the fear that exists between men and women."3. Isn't It Time the Church Gave Singles a Break?  "Not everyone attending a Sunday service is married. We’re not all parents. We’re not all employed at nine-to-five jobs. And yet, while a majority of the Scripture applies to every single one of us, we spend a lot of time focused on responsibilities that don’t." Jayson Bradley has the four reasons churches shouldn't spend so much time preaching on marriage (and other "roles").4. Syria Explained: How it Became a Religious War Confused by the religious factions involved in Syria's civil war? CNN Belief Blog's Daniel Burke breaks it down for you.5. Immigration Reform: A Moral Imperative With Congress back in session next week, New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan pens a clear-cut case for immigration reform and his desire to "keep families intact."6. Misery Loves Comedy Read an excerpt from Nadia Bolz-Weber''s new book Pastrix: The Cranky, Beautiful Faith of a Sinner & Saint, which releases Sept. 10.7. Assad's Bizarre Instagram Account: Propaganda With a Comments Section The Atlantic offers us a peek into the strange Instagram world of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad — one that paints a rosy picture of his war-torn country. The comments section, on the other hand, tells a different story.8. A Love Letter to My Body “Who was I to rail at you? To beat you down day after day after day? To abuse you in front of others? I never really saw you, did I?” This piece dates back to July, but it's a beautiful reminder to love the skin you're in, from SheLoves Magazine.9. Miley Cyrus' Contribution to Feminism "Women historically have been held to different standards of sexual expression than men, and when in doubt, blame the woman." Fair?10. When Bad Christians Happen to Good People Have you ever wondered what people on the other side of proselytizing think? Here's your glimpse — and how not to go about fulfilling the Great Commission — from John Shore at the Unfundamentalist Christians blog.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 21 hours ago
 First keep the peace within yourself, then you can also bring peace to others.  - Thomas A. Kempis Thomas a Kempis + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 21 hours ago
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. - John 16:33 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 21 hours ago
God, we ask for your peace to transcend conflict. We ask not simply for a cessation of violence but for a reconciliation of relationships. Jesus, our Prince of Peace, we long to see your kingdom come on earth. Let it be so.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 1 day ago
It is a bigger miracle to be patient and refrain from anger than it is to control the demons which fly through the air. - John Cassian + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 1 day ago
 The law of the Lord is perfect and revives the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure and gives wisdom to the innocent. - Psalm 19:7 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 1 day ago
Lord, give us the imagination to dream and catch glimpses of the life you intend for us to live. Show us how our individual lives are entwined with those around us, and help us to live so truly together that we embody your good news in this world. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 2 days ago
Take heed, then, to come together often to give thanks to God, and show God's praise. For when you come frequently together in the same place, the power of Satan are destroyed and his fiery darts of sin fall back, worthless. For your unity and harmonious faith prove his destruction, and the torment of his assistants. Nothing is better than Christ's peace, by which all war, both of heavenly and earthly spirits, is brought to an end. - Ignatius of Antioch + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 2 days ago
For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.    - James 2:26 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 2 days ago
 May the words of our mouths and the meditations of our hearts be always acceptable to you, O Lord, our strength and our redeemer. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 46 weeks 6 days ago
1. Watch Martin Luther King, Jr. Go on 'Meet the Press' in 1963 As part of NBC News' look back ''Remembering the Dream,'' David Gregory takes us back to 1963, when Martin Luther King, Jr., was preparing for the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.2.  The Ethics of Syrian Military Intervention: The Experts Respond Religion News Service asked a panel of theologians and policy experts whether the U.S. should intervene in Syria in light of the regime’s use of chemical weapons against civilians. Would the “Just War” doctrine justify U.S. military action, and what is America’s moral responsibility?3. The Women Who Sang Out for Civil Rights "In our day and age, when young women make the news for singing and performing in vulgar, suggestive, and less than life-giving ways, the anniversary of the march is—among many things—a much needed reminder of the transforming power and legacy that women can have with their voices and with song," Enuma Okoro writes for Christianity Today's Her.Meneutics blog.4. When Miley Cyrus and I Were at Church "There is no place for finger-pointing by people who hide their sins in privacy at those that broadcast their mistakes to the world." David Moore at Fuller Theological Seminary's The Burner Blog puts judgey Christian bloggers in their place with this piece on Miley Cyrus' VMA performance heard 'round the world. 5. How Poverty Taxes the Brain Emily Badger at The Atlantic Cities points to an interesting new study on brain capacity and poverty. One chilling statistic: "the condition of poverty imposed a mental burden akin to losing 13 IQ points, or comparable to the cognitive difference that’s been observed between chronic alcoholics and normal adults."6. Seeking Nonviolent Solutions in Syria Writing in the July issue of Sojourners magazine, David Cortright outlined reasons why the U.S. should avoid military intervention in Syria. 7. Seamus Heaney: 10 Best Poems Irish Poet Seamus Heaney died in Dublin on Friday at the age of 74. The Telegraph compiled a list of his best works. 8. Hurricane Michele Bachmann? Groups Hope to Name Storms After Climate Change Deniers From Alex Brown at National Journal: a new petition from Project Name Change and 350+ Action Fund is asking the World Meteorological Organization  to change naming conventions to shame Congress members, like Sen. James Inhofe, who deny climate change — hoping for future weather reports like: "Marco Rubio is expected to pound the Eastern Seaboard."9. The Winners in Immigration Control: Private Prisons Aubrey Pringle at The Atlantic shines light on one big force behind anti-immigration reform efforts: the private prison lobby, which, according to the article, has shelled out $1 million on lobbying so far this year.10. Kid President Explains It All.  The latest installment from everyone's favorite child president shows more ways to make the world awesome. "EVERYONE DESERVES A PARADE."