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News from the Field

Learn from people on the forefront of justice work. Find out more about global and local injustices, the work being done to combat them, and the restored relationships that result.

Loving Your Neighbors Whoever They Are

When she read a story on social media about headstones in a Jewish cemetery being vandalized in Michigan, my niece, Meghan Cohen, thought immediately of the cemetery in the Detroit area where her grandparents and aunt are buried.

A college professor in Denver, Meghan quickly decided that if the vandals had defaced the graves of her loved ones, she would hop on a plane -- despite the COVID- 19 pandemic -- and head for Detroit to clean them.

An Election in a Country Not My Own: A Prayer

I write this the morning after an election in a country not my own.  

An election in a country not my own, and yet this moment feels fraught even for me.  So much depends on the votes counted, for those citizens casting votes and for those watching and listening elsewhere.

Hondurans huddled in cold valleys south of the Mexican border whose welcome is in part determined by the immigration policy of a country not my own.

Speak Out, Speak Up

On Thursday October 8, 2020 we woke up to witness two deaths that had occurred during the night in the village. Two people who pretended to be customers killed an unsuspecting young lady operating the casino shop after midnight. The two murderers were heard as they tried to lift the loot, noise from moving the machines made the neighbors suspicious of dubious activity going on next door. An alarm for help was sounded and a search for the perpetrators started. One of the thugs was arrested by village leaders and police.

Along the Fringe

I have been a guest during the Annual Pueblo Feast days which include traditional dances, cultural activities, arts, crafts and Southwest feasts. One can smell the balsam and cedar wood burning as one enters a Pueblo household. We are treated to dishes native to the area, lamb stew, fry bread, sopaipillas; lots of red and green chile peppers, posole, and slow-cooked beans all served with a warm hospitably.

Wisdom & Discernment

Since 2011, I’ve been speaking and raising awareness about issues relating to human trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation. Over the years, my presentation style changes and evolves to work to my strengths and address emerging issues. One of the challenges I have speaking to audiences of strangers is not knowing how much they might already know about the issue, so I tend to start with general facts and information and go from there. Last year, I adapted my presentation and centered my content around myths about human trafficking.

Introducing... Laura Harjanto!

Laura is the newest member of the Office of Social Justice team. She joins our team this week as the Justice Mobilizing and Advocacy Fellow, a one year position with our office. Laura comes to us with a background in Political Science after attending Calvin College. We are thrilled to welcome Laura to the team!

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Justice Crushes

I often joke about my “justice crushes” -- the people I spy on, or listen to, or read about, whose work helps to remind me of why I’m a Christian, why it’s worth it to keep caring, why it feels right and good and hopeful to stay engaged in this hard work.

Alexia Salvatierra tops my list of “justice crushes” for sure.

A Pandemic Examen

Is it just me, or has it been hard to remember what day it is during this pandemic? 

A Letter to My Children

Dear Children, 

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Nova Scotia Strong

On the heels of writing a reflection on encouragement to lament, April 18th and 19th, 2020 brought Canada  and especially Nova Scotians forcefully into this painful liminal space. My beautiful province was launched into the international spotlight as the backdrop for senseless violence; not for its natural and abundant beauty. The tiny rural town of Portapique nestled in Colchester county, a mere hundred and thirty kilometers from Halifax, experienced carnage that was unheard of in Canada until that fatal weekend.

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