A Great Blessing & A Great Responsibility: Sojourners Emerging Voices Project!

I am humbled and blessed to be apart of Sojourners Emerging Voices Project which is a  initiative that aims to raise the voices of new leaders for faithful justice. I found out about this in the spring but the project was officially launched yesterday. God is hilarious because a few years ago I  complained to friends and God about the lack of women and people of color speaking, leading and writing in the faith-based social justice world. Often when we complain about something that needs to get done God will point back at you and say “why don’t you do it?” In 2007 I was discouraged about the lack of concern for justice I observed in the church, had recently left a really bad church situation and was praying and crying about the gap between my reality and the church. During that time after a fast I learned about Sojourners from a email to Union students inviting us to apply for a scholarship to the Pentecost 2007 Conference (which I thought was a Black Pentecostal Social Justice Conference, one of my girlfriends even thought I was going to meet somebody there, LOL). I attended the conference and found a community of Christians striving for justice nationally but more importantly in NYC. At the conference I met Lisa Sharon Harper (a fellow Emerging Voices member), Rev. Peter Heltzel and Anna Lee Winans all founders of NY Faith & Justice. I returned home fired up to organize people of faith for social justice. A year later I was able to intern at Sojourners as a Beatitudes Society Fellow and began writing for the magazine and blog. I never expected to have these opportunities but God does hear our spoken and unspoken prayers. Those who know me know that I come from very humble circumstances and I was not raised in church, all I have to qualify me for this work is God’s grace and the words of my testimony.

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Rick Warren: Purpose Driven Health??

When you make one step God will continue to connect you with people, places and events to confirm that you are on the right path. Since starting my journey to wholeness God has given me so much information in the form of books, meeting individuals and finding out about organizations such as Just Food, NYC Department of Health Office of Minority Health (which gives funding for wellness programs in churches) and now on the Sojourners Blog (a faith based advocacy group that I write for and work with for my job) Lilly Fowler writes about how Pastor Rick Warren, Author of The Purpose Driven Life is focusing on health. Though I don’t always agree with his theology he is one of the most influential pastors in the nation so he has the power to bring wellness to thousands of people. Sometimes I questions whether I am alone on this journey but then God shows me that the spirit  “doesn’t work cross purposes” (as my mentor Author & Activist Lisa Sharon Harper shared with me) we are all connected and we all receive divine direction when we most need and want it.

See the blog post below & be blessed!

Rick Warren in September 2008. Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

Megachurch pastor Rick Warren has become an outsized evangelical superstar: best-selling author of The Purpose Driven Life series, pastoral mentor and even political referee.Now Warren is finding a new purpose: tackling his outsized waistline.

Warren, 58, says the revelation came about a year ago, during a marathon baptism session of about 800 people at Saddleback Church.

As he struggled to submerge members of his flock in the baptismal pool one by one, he realized his parishioners were heavy and that he, too, was fat, setting a terrible example.

Warren says his gradual weight gain — about two to three pounds a year — has added up over his 30 years as a pastor. To lose the extra pounds and inspire others to do the same, the former football player enlisted the help of three doctors.

Warren recruited a family physician, Dr. Mark Hyman; Dr. Mehmet Oz, New York Times best-selling author and host of NBC’s The Dr. Oz Show; and Dr. Daniel Amen, a professor of psychiatry at the University of California, Irvine School of Medicine, and the lone professing Christian in the mix.

Together they launched “The Daniel Plan: God’s Prescription for Your Health,” named after a passage in the biblical Book of Daniel where the prophet and fellow Israelites refuse to accept “royal” food and wine from the Babylonian king, opting for water and simple vegetables instead.

More after the jump