Campus hosts Sojourners founder Jim Wallis

Wed, 2006-03-22 10:02 -- univcomm
March 22, 2006

Anderson University recently hosted Jim Wallis, executive director and editor of Sojourners and convener of Call to Renewal, during the campus’s bi-weekly chapel/convocation. Wallis’s visit was made possible through the AU Peace and Conflict Transformation Program (PACT). Wallis is a Christian leader for social change. [listen to this chapel on the new AU podcast through ITunes or watch the AU Chapel Webcast].

Wallis is a speaker, author, activist, and international commentator on ethics and public life. He speaks at more than 200 events a year and his columns appear in the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and other major newspapers. His most recent book is, God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It (Harper Collins, 2005). He offers regular commentary and analysis for radio and television and teaches a course at Harvard University on "Faith, Politics, and Society."

Wallis was a founder of Sojourners - Christians for justice and peace - more than 30 years ago and continues to serve as the editor of Sojourners magazine, covering faith, politics and culture. In 1995, Wallis was instrumental in forming Call to Renewal, a national federation of churches, denominations, and faith-based organizations from across the theological and political spectrum working to overcome poverty.

Wallis speaks at more than 200 events a year and his columns appear in the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and other major newspapers. His most recent book is, “God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It” (Harper Collins, 2005). He offers regular commentary and analysis for radio and television and teaches a course at Harvard University on "Faith, Politics, and Society."

In the last several years, Wallis has led more than 250 town meetings, bringing together pastors, civic and business leaders, and elected officials in the cause of social justice and moral politics. Under Wallis' leadership, Call to Renewal has hosted annual Roundtables on Poverty for national religious leaders and successful National Summits. Endorsed initially by a broad cross-section of Christian leaders, Call To Renewal's Covenant and Campaign to Overcome Poverty now has tens of thousands of supporters around the United States.

Jim Wallis was raised in a Midwest evangelical family. As a teenager, his questioning of the racial segregation in his church and community led him to the black churches and neighborhoods of inner-city Detroit. He spent his student years involved in the civil rights and antiwar movements. While at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Illinois, Jim and several other students started a small magazine and community with a Christian commitment to social justice which has now grown into Sojourners whose combined print and electronic media have a readership of more than 100,000 people.

In 1979, Time magazine named Wallis one of the "50 Faces for America's Future." His books include Faith Works (2000), The Soul of Politics: A Practical and Prophetic Vision for Change (1994), Who Speaks for God? A New Politics of Compassion, Community, and Civility (1996), Call to Conversion (1981).

Wallis lives in inner-city Washington, D.C. with his wife, Joy, and their sons, Luke and Jack.

Founded in 1971 as a faith-based organization, Sojourners provides an alternative perspective on faith, politics, and culture through its award-winning monthly magazine, e-mail services, Web site, media commentaries, and public events. Ecumenical and progressive, Sojourners lifts up the biblical connection between social justice and spiritual renewal and nurtures community by bringing together people from the various traditions and streams of the church. Sojourners also hosts an annual program of voluntary service now in its 21st year.

Anderson University is a private, four-year, Christian liberal arts institution of approximately 2,800 undergraduate and graduate students. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, the university offers more than 60 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, education and theology.