Archives For Chris Horst

1. Lionel Messi and his hometown
ESPN has a really long and really interesting look at Leo Messi’s hometown, written by Wright Thompson who traveled to Rosario, Argentina to see how the soccer star is revered — or isn’t — in his old stomping ground. Here’s how it begins:

In the imagination of guidebook writers, who see places as they should be but rarely as they are, there is a passionate love affair between the city of Rosario and its famous progeny, global soccer star Leo Messi. I know this because it said so, right there on page 179 of the “Lonely Planet,” which I thumbed through during the three hours of countryside between Buenos Aires and Messi’s hometown.

2. The fuzziness of being faith-based
This week over at tdconnect, my friend Chris Horst had a guest post asking what we actually mean when we refer to an organization as being “faith-based”:

Our world is better because of Sharon’s organization, but they are not who I thought they were. And they are not who they set out to be. In our pluralist culture, the gravitational pull of secularism can feel irresistible. But there is fresh momentum building among many faith-based organizations that believe it’s not. This fresh momentum surfaces in surprising places. Even an adamant atheist pleaded for faith-based organizations to remain anchored to our faith. To hold fast to our foundation. Though many disagree with the message of Jesus, we all agree that a light under a basket is no light at all.

3. Evangelical-Islamist encounters in a changing Middle East
Chris Seiple, president of the Institute for Global Engagement, has started a series for Capital Commentary on the relationship between Christians and Muslims in the Middle East and North Africa:

I would rather risk being called politically and theologically naïve now, by engaging and building relationships with Islamists and Salafis, than ask “what if” later. Even more importantly, God commands me to love my neighbor and my enemy—whether that enemy is real, imagined, or potential. In other words, engaging Islamists and Salafis is not only the right thing to do, it’s in our self-interest. If we can develop and then maintain a seat at the table with them, we can cooperate without compromise. Such influence begins with the basic understanding that they are better positioned than Christian Americans to condemn and constrain terrorism committed in the name of Islam.

4. Reading fiction as a Christian discipline
Deborah Smith Douglas writes for The Christian Century:

Over the course of my life, I have taken on all manner of spiritual practices, from now-I-lay-me-down-to-sleep to centering prayer. I have prayed with the Psalms, with the rosary, with icons. I have picked up practices and put them down. Some still discipline and nourish my praying life. But of all the spiritual disciplines I have ever attempted, the habit of steady reading has helped me most and carried me farthest. Of course, reading scripture has been indispensable. But reading fiction—classics of world literature, fairy tales and Greek myths, science fiction and detective novels—has done more to baptize my imagination, inform my faith and strengthen my courage than all the prayer techniques in the world.

5. Chicken buses in Guatemala
Any who have visited Guatemala know about the “chicken buses” seen throughout the country. Here’s a photo gallery of them, which in some odd way warms my heart. Thanks to Mike for the link.

6. Color in the desert
Here’s a short video featuring some colorful graffiti artwork on one building here in Phoenix. Thanks to the Welcome To Phoenix blog for the link.

color in the desert from jack schwitz on Vimeo.

Repaso is intended as a thought-provoking compilation of news and commentary from the past week related to the intersections of faith, development, justice and peace. As always, I welcome your thoughts on any of the links and ideas in this roundup!

[Photo credit: dessinsmignonsfazo.blogspot.com]

1. Paul Farmer on post-quake Haiti
NPR’s Fresh Air had a half-hour interview this week with Dr. Paul Farmer, founder of Partners in Health, in which he talks about Haiti a year and a half after the devastating quake in January 2010. It’s tied in with his new book, which is one I’ll definitely plan to read and possibly review for the blog or a magazine. Farmer has been working in Haiti for a very long time, and his perspective is sobering but worth listening to. In the interview he says:

Some people talk about Haiti as being the graveyard of development projects. Our own experience has been very positive working in Haiti — building health facilities and working with the public sector and creating jobs — but [we are now thinking about] how we can now make these other, more ambitious projects also effective on the implementation front.

2. Haiti: 18 months later
Roseann Dennery, a good friend of Katie’s, has a new piece in Relevant Magazine on Haiti as well, focusing on the country’s tragic orphan crisis. She has been living there for the past year, working with Samaritan’s Purse along with Justin, her husband. Her first-hand experience of the crisis has led her to a unique perspective:

It is one thing to read statistics about Haiti’s expanding orphan crisis, but it is quite another to witness it; to walk down a squalid dirt road and visit several overrun orphanages within a few minutes of one another, each with greater need than the last. Wide eyed, hungry, soiled. Each humble face tells a different variation of the same story. It is unsettling and overwhelming. And it feels harshly unjust. What does it mean, then, to be a Christian in the midst of a swelling sea of abandoned children, a trend that shows no sign of slowing?

3. Snapshots of Suffering
My friend Chris Horst, who works for HOPE International, has a great personal reflection on dignity and suffering, based on experiences in the Dominican Republic. He concludes:

I’m thrilled to serve a God who truly knows me. A God who does not define me by my weaknesses. A Creator who made me in his image. A Father who “exults” over me, his child. These truths convince me that If God and I sojourned across the Dominican together, his pictures would look strikingly different than mine.

4. Are humanitarian groups doing the media’s job overseas?
This was an interesting one for me, since I’m a communications specialist for a large NGO not unlike the one featured in this post. It is an interesting observation Tom Paulson makes about this trend of NGO communicators doing something very similar to journalism and what this means for mainstream media.

5. Is baseball becoming Latin America’s game?
NBC Sports has an interesting piece on the rise of Latino players in the MLB:

Much like the recent influx of immigrants from Latin America into the general U.S. population, MLB has seen a remarkable shift in it’s demographic over the last 20 years. Ozzie Guillen, the outspoken manager of the Chicago White Sox, said last year that within 10 years “American people are going to need a visa to play this game because we’re going to take over.” And while Guillen’s comments can be taken as a humorous exaggeration, there is an element of truth to what he says. Baseball might be America’s pastime, but the sport is becoming increasingly Latino at heart.

6. Trailer for :58 film
I highlighted the new :58 campaign here on the blog a month ago today. Now here is the trailer for the campaign’s feature length film, due for release this fall.

58: THE FILM Trailer July, 11 2011 from LIVE58NOW on Vimeo.

Creative creatures creating

February 17, 2011 — 1 Comment

I wrote yesterday about a bad kind of capitalism, so it seems right that today I mention a good kind, via the blog of a friend of mine, Chris Horst. He is very thoughtful when it comes to development and microfinance, especially from a Christian perspective, so he’s well worth following. He’s written a great new post on the humanizing power of creativity and innovation, which Cubans are increasingly being able to exercise after decades of having those impulses suppressed. Chris would tell you that creativity is God-given, and that God has planted some of it in each of us, and that what we do with it matters a lot. I think he’s exactly right.

When we view economic opportunity as a chance to be creative, and when we view each person on earth as an image-bearer of our Creator, good things can happen. And, for the very same reason, it seems that we’d be increasingly maladjusted to business in its more dehumanizing and destructive forms.

While I’m at it, I’d be amiss not to mention that HOPE International was featured last night on WGAL, the local NBC affiliate, focusing on its great work in Haiti. Watch the clip here.