Welfare Reform & Faith-Based Organizations

By Derek Davis; Barry Hankins | Go to book overview

6
Overcoming Poverty: A New Era Of Partnership

JIM WALLIS

I begin with a couple of stories. I am, after all, a preacher. I am a big fan of the show, "Car Talk." The show is not about fixing cars, as they always tell us. Rather, it is about relationships and truisms about life. When I am home, on Saturday mornings, I tend to be in the shower during "Car Talk." That is when it hits my life. A few weeks ago I was there in the shower listening, and I heard: "Never criticize someone until you have walked for a mile in their shoes" long pause -- "because, then when you criticize them you'll be a mile away, and you'll have their shoes." Now I'm there in the shower, half awake, and I hear this old, boring slogan, and I think, I can't believe they're saying something like that. All of a sudden, they give a twist, and it becomes interesting and provocative, it gets my attention. That is what we have to do on these questions about Charitable Choice. We have been using old language and categories for so long, we are all still a little stuck in them, so how do we think in provocative new ways about this topic?

Second story. I had the joy of getting married about five months ago to an Anglican vicar, one of the first women ordained in the Church of England. Preachers are always looking for a good story, and my wife in these first five months has provided me with some new material. One of her stories that I love is about a young vicar in the Church of England who had Sunday School for the first time and he was very nervous about this -- how would he relate to the kids? To be kind of hip and accessible, he sits on the edge of the table and he looks down to

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