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Thanksgiving and a Theology of Despair

Are you feeling pressure to be thankful? We are in the midst of the Thanksgiving season. I’m reminded everywhere I go to “Be thankful!” Well, call me the Scrooge of Thanksgiving, but I’m just not feeling thankful. The more someone tells me to “Be thankful!” the more I feel a sense of despair. Be thankful? In the midst of Ferguson, Missouri? Jim Wallis writes over at Sojourners that, “Many black families wok ...

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Uncomplicated, In Afghanistan

On November 7, 2014, while visiting Kabul, The Secretary General of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg, noted that NATO will soon launch a new chapter, a new non-combat mission in Afghanistan. But it’s difficult to spot new methods as NATO commits itself to sustaining combat on the part of Afghan forces. Stoltenberg commended NATO Allies and partner nations from across the world, in an October 29th speech, in Brussels, ...

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Ferguson and the “Us vs. Them” Illusion

As the grand jury’s decision on whether nor not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson loomed, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon told a TV reporter “he’s preparing for peace and war.” What the governor did, in the tense uncertainty preceding the decision, was pre-declare a state of emergency and activate the Missouri National Guard to help contain the possibility of violent, anti-police protests. He also app ...

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Book Feature Friday: Interview With Frances Fuller, Author of “In Borrowed Houses”

About a month ago, I introduced Raven Foundation readers to a beautiful story which, I believe, models what it means to take being a member of the Body of Christ seriously. In Borrowed Houses is an incredible memoir of 7 years of the life of Frances Fuller and her husband, Wayne, when they lived in Lebanon during the Lebanese Civil War. For anyone who enjoys autobiographies or stories of incredible faith in ...

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Oprah, the One Question, and Mimetic Desire

Oprah Winfrey is used to asking the questions, but there is one question that everyone asks Oprah. From presidents to world dignitaries to movie stars to housewives and househusbands to comedians to perpetrators of crimes to victims of crimes to rich and to poor, when the cameras stop rolling and the lights go off, the question is always the same: Was that okay? Can you believe it? People who seem to have a ...

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Restorative Justice And The Rebirth Of Chicago

The vision is a city interlaced with restorative justice hubs — community centers that bring hope and promise to troubled kids in a town where too many of them are dying. “It is not OK that my friends and I have already planned our funerals,” then-high school senior Keann Mays-Lenoir told a crowd of 300 people a year ago, at a rafter-shaking meeting where the idea was introduced. It builds slowly, from the ...

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On The List

Editor's Note: We are honored to feature accomplished peace activist Kathy Kelly. Kabul—[Sunday, Nov. 2], in the Afghan Peace Volunteers' (APVs') “Borderfree Center” here in Kabul, I heard someone banging on the front gate and hurried downstairs to open it. As it happened, I was the only one at the Center that morning. Outside the gate stood two women with their burkas pushed back. They had come a long way ...

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What Peacemakers Must Learn From Soldiers

How does a pacifist say thank you on Veteran's Day? This question was on my mind all day yesterday, and my colleagues at The Raven Foundation did a wonderful job of answering. With a restless daughter, I didn't have the time to say all that I wanted to say about it. But a lot of thoughts occurred to me. Martin Luther King Jr. said, "Those who love peace must learn to organize as effectively as those who lov ...

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Peace As A Human Right

“Individuals and peoples have a right to peace.” In the beginning was the word. OK. This is the beginning, and these are the words, but they haven’t arrived yet — at least not officially, with full force of meaning. It’s our job, not God’s, to create the new story of who we are, and millions — billions — of people fervently wish we could do so. The problem is that the worst of our nature is better organized ...

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Violence Nevermore!

Happy Halloween, Dear Friends! Tonight, for a spooky edition of Book Feature Friday, I decided to do things a little differently. As it is Halloween, my article tonight is going out in costume -- disguised as a parody of the original Raven by model-obstacle  famous master of poetic horror, Edgar Allen Poe. Just have fun with it friends; it's my "treat" for you this Halloween! Once upon a midnight dreary I w ...

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