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Watch the Launch (video)

29 Mar Posted by in Featured | 16 comments
Watch the Launch (video)

Washington, D.C. – At a press conference on Monday, March 28th, a large coalition of Christian, Muslim, Jewish and other advocacy organizations announced a broad based movement of fasting, prayer and advocacy, provoked by budget cuts proposed by Congress that would disproportionately hurt those living in poverty.

“In 1993, as a Member of Congress, I went on a 22 day fast to protest the lack of conscience of the U.S. Congress towards poor and hungry people. Now, almost twenty years later, the stakes are even higher, with Congress proposing budget cuts that will hurt vulnerable people even more than the cuts provoking me to fasting and prayer two decades ago.” said Ambassador Tony Hall, announcing the beginning of a new fast.

Along with Ambassador Hall, three other leaders—Jim Wallis, president and CEO of Sojourners, Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World and Ritu Sharma, president of Women Thrive Worldwide—announced the beginning of their own fasts. They challenged people of faith and conscience to join them, pledging to put pressure on Congress to form a “circle of protection” around programs benefitting poor and hungry people.

Watch the full episode. See more Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly.

  1. John Lofton04-21-11

    Nowhere in Scripture does God says that it is the role of the civil government to have programs to help “poor and hungry people,” to give welfare, education, housing, health care to ANYBODY. That is the role of the Church, of God’s people. It is because God’s limits on civil government have been ignored that we have a debt of more than $14 TRILLION!

    John Lofton, Editor,
    Communications Director, Institute On The Constitution
    Recovering Republican

  2. Eddie04-14-11

    If the really wealthy (think billionaire) gets his wealth from overcharging and exploiting the poor and middle class should not the government take back the money?

    In a world of moral people, the rich would not always want more. How many houses does one need? and cars? and servents? It seems the more you have the more you want. Greed is the problem.

    Live a simple life and there would be enough for all!

  3. BW04-13-11

    Unfortunately, Garth, many wealthy people do not give “their fair share”. So, either everyone has to give like you do or be taxed. And we have always had some who “suffer” due to the actions of others. It starts in elementary school when someone in a class does something they shouldn’t and the entire class is punished. To think that churches and other such organizations will take care of all the poor and needy is not living in reality.

  4. Susan Saxe04-13-11

    To my libertarian and anti-government, anti-tax friends:

    It perplexes me that the fact that the government might take a tiny percentage of your tax dollars to subsidize food or medical care for your own neighbors seems to bother you more than the fact that the government can and does take thousands of times more money (not to mention our sons and daughters) for war. Or are you just opposed to government altogether? In that case I have to say, go ahead and “drown the beast (government) in a bathtub” and just see what kind of Beast you turn loose in its place. A successful Libertarian in action is called a Warlord. My friends, you are at war with civilization itself.

    For my part, I am tired of corporate welfare, tired of hearing that international corporations that benefit from the backing of our gigantic military, the navy that protects their shipping lanes from the pirates of happy government-free Somalia, the taxpayer funded roads, bridges, police, courts and infrastructure should pay nothing or next to nothing for these privileges. I am tired of politicians giving them public land to exploit at bargain basement prices without regard to their devastating effects on our food, air and water or what price we pay in cancer, asthma or other diseases. Who annointed these greed-heads to lord it over us? I am sick of hearing that the budget that lets these vultures off the hook has to be balanced on the backs of hungry children.

    Are you a person of faith as I am? Well, God judges a society by the way it treats its most vulnerable members. This is the bottom line deal-breaking condition for a culture that deserves to survive.

    From now on, when I see a comment of this nature, I pledge to respond, not by trying to reason with the unreasonable, but by writing one more letter, making one more contribution, sending one more email, signing one more petition, going to one more demonstration-doing one more thing to bring about a just society AND TO THANKING THE PERSON FOR THE REMINDER. Now go ahead and complain about being expected to do your part as a member (and beneficiary) of a civilized society, and I will take that as a reminder to make another contribution to the cause of Civilization. Anyone want to take the pledge and join me?

  5. Clockwise Cat04-12-11

    I really viciously dislike religion BUT when someone religious, like Jim Wallis, or Roy Bourgeois, etc. leads such compassionate missions it’s VERY difficult to repudiate them. In fact, if ALL religious people were like this, I wouldn’t have such a problem with religion.

  6. Garth04-07-11

    I’m sorry that you think that I’m greedy and selfish that shows that you don’t know my character. I’ve given thousands of dollars to my local church through tithes and offerings to other ministries throughout this country and world. They were given from my heart and not through coercion from God, family or government. If the government takes my money without my free will than it is stealing. Sorry Laurie that’s not from my free will and will reap no benefit for my family. Your programs will acquire my wealth. My family will not. My family is number one not the government. If that is selfish I guess that I am. Go back to the founding fathers, read the Declaration of Independence and see what the founders were trying to escape from. Read the Constitution of the United States and see what it laid out as to what the government is allowed and not allowed to do. Open your heart to these truths. God bless you Laurie and your family.

  7. Jeanette Baust04-07-11

    Once again, Tony Hall, Jim Wallis, Ritu Sharma, David Beckman and friends calling us to a higher consciousness, awakeness, compassion, and right action regarding the most vulnerable in our nation and around the globe. These are the folks who should be on 24/7 satellite news and the cover of our major magazines. Let’s get them there! Spread this to editors, news organizations, and our spheres of influence.

  8. Diane Crouse04-05-11

    I have decided to share a bit more scripture.

    John 3:16 & 17. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through Him.

    If we are not giving this food with the works that we do, we are not truly feeding the lost and the works are in vein. You can chose to believe this or not, even this is a free will issue.

    One more to share and this is to the believers. John 4:23
    But the hour is coming and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship Him.

    The Government can not offer this to anyone and without the truth, they that labor do labor in vein and the food will not provide eternal life. Gov’t money is not the answer, God is.

  9. Diane Crouse04-05-11

    It is dire for sure, right here and right now in this Country. Here is a message that you should be fasting and praying about. If my people who are called by my Name, shall humble themselves and repent and turn away from their wicked ways. Then I will hear them from Heaven and will heal their land. Until this Nation looks at its own sins and rebellion against God and repents, how can you ask Him to bless our works in other parts of the world? Is this Nation in debt? Is that immoral? How did we get in this condition? Do any of you know or care?

    I believe in giving by free will. God is trying to do a work in a persons heart in giving. The Government can not do that work on the persons heart by using their taxes as the giving method. God can not work on the individuals heart to freely give. The Government is not God and you should stop believing that God can only use the Government to solve these problems in the world. You can start by asking God to bring this Nation to repentance and back to Him.

    The Government is not the answer to the problems, they are part of the problem, they are not God and them trying to take His place does not work. You ministers and Pastors should know this better then anyone. I tell you this, only God can help us in this time of trouble.

    He has offered His help, in His Word. He has showed us the way the truth and the life in and through His Son Jesus (the bread of life). If this is continued to be ignored, thee of little faith, if you will continue to depend on the bigness of your Government instead of the Greatness of our God who is able to do anything.

    He will not be moved by false premises. He can feed the multitudes and He can move His people to care for needs of others and He does. He can do so much more then we believe for. We ask our Government to do His work and wonder why it does not work to truly change lives. Making people dependent on other people does not set them free and feeding the flesh without feeding the soul with the truth does not save them.

    Ask God to set the Gospel free in us and our land, call for repentance so that our land can be healed. If you really care about the needy, the hungry, the lost and dying world. Take a stand for the Word of Truth, Jesus, so that people can be set free from the tyranny of the Government that wants them to be indebted servants. Trust that God can do His work and move on His people to care about the needs of others. A strong rebuke is better then a secret love. In Jesus name, Amen.

  10. Laurie04-05-11

    Sorry Garth, but it is sad that you see the government as “stealing” your money. You are not an island; whatever wealth you have accumulated was not done by yourself. Society was here, providing you with consumers, protection, education, infrastructure and many many other things.

    Try to justify your greed and selfishness all you want, to try to make yourself feel better, but deep down you know it’s wrong. And I don’t have to be a christian to know that.

  11. Garth04-05-11

    Sorry folks I disagree with this. God calls people to give of themselves for charity. He doesn’t advocate stealing of one mans wealth to give to another. It has to be voluntarily given. The governments job is not to steal the wealth through taxes to give to the needy. Does this make sense to any? God doesn’t steal and neither allows governments to steal through taxes of the people to give to the needy. You can fast and pray all you want but only God’s will will be answered and this will not. It is giving from the heart that God honors not the stealing from ones wealth to give to another. That God will not honor.

  12. Ken B sfo04-01-11

    After watching the video, how could one not feel the need to take action! I pray all people of good faith will come together and make a difference for those who are in need today and tomorrow - please join in the call to be neighbor to eachother.

  13. Judith Blair03-30-11

    What important work!

    I’ll look for the courage to join the effort. Thank you, Ambassador Hall.

  14. John Ise03-30-11

    GREAT and inspiring stuff!!!

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