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Mapping Social Services and Identifying Collaborators

How much do social outreach programs of religious congregations contribute to their communities? What is the overall contribution of congregational services and the quiet heroes who work for them?

Bridging Borders and Boundaries in a Troubled World

On the first full day of NAINConnect 2014 last month, as 150 participants fanned across greater Detroit in bussed site-visits, a torrential 6.2 inches of rain fell on Detroit in a few short hours. Not since ten taxis failed to show up in San Francisco in 2008 to transport NAIN participants from the university to a dinner-cruise on the Bay, have NAIN planners experienced so much unexpected disaster. Except the consequences in Detroit were mind-numbing.

The Heart of My Grandfather

Detroit, where I was born, formed, and raised, straddles a bittersweet line between two worlds.  It is a place where the American Dream has already died four or five different times.  It is a spent shell from its days as the “arsenal of democracy.”  As I visited my family during a recent holiday trip, the starkness of this reality took on a deeper clarity.  Walking and driving through the city, I came upon the supremely haunting vision of the burnt-out yet still elegant remains of the old Michigan Central Station.  Pete and Frank’s, a grocery store my mom and her mom had scoured for bargains for nearly 50 years, is now empty and on the auction block.

Interfaith-Active Artists Promote Peace with Story & Song

Once the car capital of America, Detroit has come to be known for its urban decay, for massive unemployment, decrepit housing, and endemic crime. Its vast freeway network resembles a ghost town during rush hour, an incongruous and troubling image for the once prosperous, vital home of Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler.