October 11, 2018

Today the world is observing the International Day of the Girl, where we remember how important girls are to our world, how they’ve been marginalized throughout history, and how we can work to help them reach their full, God-given potential. Two days ago, I got a big check in the mail and some incredible news: The Invisible Girls, the memoir I wrote about five Somali refugee girls I met on a train in Portland, Oregon, as I was recovering from… Read more

October 9, 2018

It’s been a doozy of a week for our world. I was off line for the weekend, attending my sister’s wedding in Pennsylvania.  When I woke up yesterday morning, back at home in San Francisco, I was inundated by headlines that hurt my heart, by texts from tearful friends, by an emotional exhaustion that’s hard to explain, by a discouragement that’s hard to name. After a sexual assault victim was given the middle finger by a roomful of white men… Read more

October 1, 2018

Last week I wrote that calls to the National Sexual Assault Hotline went up 57% when Christine Blasey Ford’s claims about Brett Kavanaugh hit the news.  The number of calls the hotline received jumped from a 57% increase to a 201% increase on September 27th,  the day Ford testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee. I don’t think we’ve ever lived in a time that’s as tender as today for survivors of sexual assault. One in six women and one in… Read more

September 26, 2018

After the allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh broke last week, the National Sexual Assault Hotline saw a 57% increase in calls in less than 48 hours.  (Previously, the biggest increase was 46%, as the Harry Weinstein accusations were coming to light.) Many people are dismissing the story by repeating cliches about victims of sexual assault that have long ago been proven to be not only unhelpful, but untrue. It’s he said-she said.   They were both intoxicated.  … Read more

September 19, 2018

Last week, a video went viral. It was a video of 56-year-old Anthony Torres shaving his face while riding on a commuter train from NYC to New Jersey, secretly filmed by a fellow passenger. The video was viewed by millions of people, many of whom commented that Torres was a slob. An animal. Nasty and gross. A reporter for the Washington Post tracked Torres down and asked him the question everyone was wondering: Why were you shaving on a train?… Read more

September 13, 2018

I’ve been watching weather updates this week about Florence, the hurricane that’s hurtling toward the east coast, threatening “a massive assault on the Carolinas,” according to the latest report. As I’ve watched the hurricane take shape, I’ve considered the chaos and fear and potential destruction hurricanes create.  And I’ve thought a lot about storms. How can we feel safe when everything we care about is at risk?  How can we feel secure when all we know and love is vulnerable… Read more

September 11, 2018

September 11, 2001 has become the “Where were you the day that…” moment for my generation.  For previous generations, life-changing days were Black Tuesday, 1929.  Pearl Harbor, 1941.  The assassination of John F. Kennedy, 1963.  Then the assassination of MLK, Jr., 1968.  They are moments frozen in time.  Moments when life as we knew it would never be the same.  Continental Divides in history where the direction of our world’s flow was irrevocably changed. On September 11, 2001, terrorists flew… Read more

September 5, 2018

Today is International Day of Charity, which the United Nations has observed every September 5th for the past 6 years.  The date was chosen because it’s the day Mother Teresa passed away in 1997. While the word charity has taken on a disparaging connotation, it’s roots lie in agape, the unconditional love God has for each of us.  Charity means showing God’s love to people in need. Some people in our world are in desperate need of very tangible, practical… Read more

August 17, 2018

Let’s face it: There’s a lot of good that social media can do.  It helps us stay in touch with friends and family members.  It allows us to share memes and videos and quotes that make us laugh or clap or cry.  It offers us the opportunity to read articles and essays and blogs that make us think deeper and differently.   It provides forums to share ideas and opinions and information. But the problem with social media is that… Read more

August 15, 2018

In 2016, 80% of Evangelical Christians said they’d found the political candidate God wanted them to vote for. He declared bankruptcy four times. He had multiple affairs, and was currently on his third marriage. He discriminated against people of color when he was a landlord. He bragged about sexually assaulting women. He lied about his weight and refused to show his tax returns. But evangelicals shrugged it off, went to the polls, and handed him the presidency of the nation… Read more

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