Worshipping God in the Real World – Dumpster Diving for Food Justice

This morning I came across an article on Grist magazine entitled Dumpster Diver Says Trader Joe’s Must Start Wasting Food

All in all, Americans throw out a whopping one-half of the food we produce and import. This wastefulness coexists with a devastating recession and record numbers of Americans dependent on food stamps—one in eight of us, to be exact. Our propensity to waste has now reached beyond our means to do so, and yet we keep up the bad habit even while our neighbors go hungry. Read the entire article

I was fascinated by this depiction of yet another aspect of our food chain that I tend to pay little attention to.  How much food is wasted in our communities and what can we do to change this.

I know a number of people in Christian communities around the world who supplement their food with dumpster diving but to be honest I have never really thought about the possibility of this bein a spiritual practice.  But the article this morning had me wondering: Could this be another issue that requires us to step forward in faith and make a difference?  Is the disposal of food waste as much a Christian responsibility as I think its production and consumption is? and lastly is our involvement in this issue yet another possible way that we worship God?

The film about and by  Jeremy Seifert  DIVE! will be released on DVD, iTunes, and Netflix on July 19.



Faith Means Doubt – Thoughts from Thomas Merton

Yesterday I listened to an episode of Tokens Radio Show entitled The Wisdom of Skeptics.  I highly recommend it.  What most struck me was the reference to Thomas Merton and his belief that faith cannot exist without doubt.  I meet so many people who have given up their faith because they have been led to believe that Christians should not have doubts about what and why they believe.  It so saddens me to hear this.  Like most of us I struggle constantly with doubts.  As I grapple with them in the presence of God and my current understanding of Christian faith, they usually bring me to a deeper and richer knowledge of God and of what it means to be a follower of Christ.

I found this short video clip from his Soul Searching: The Journey of Thomas Merton which provides a few profound thoughts on the topic of doubt that I think will enrich all of us.

Secret Millionaire

I was recently contacted about the possibility of doing a review on a new show that will premiere SUNDAY, MARCH 6 (8:00-9:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.  This is not something I would not normally consider doing.  I am not a fan of reality shows, but I was so deeply touched by the trailer for “Secret Millionaire,” that I couldn’t resist saying yes.

This one-hour alternative series follows some of America’s wealthiest people while they leave behind their lavish lifestyles, sprawling mansions and luxury jets to spend a week in the country’s poorest areas, is profoundly moving.  Living in local housing on welfare-level wages, they look for the most deserving individuals within the community who give their lives to help those in need.  What touched me most was the way these Secret Millionaires change as they come face to face with extraordinary people who put their own needs aside for the sake of others. At the end of the Secret Millionaires’ journeys, they reveal their true identities and donate their own money to these community activists, though I felt it was really the millionaires themselves who were given the greatest gifts.

I think this is a series well worth watching.

The New Urbanism – A Great Video

My good friends John Paget , Drew Ward, and Chris Elisara just entered this great video into a contest run by the Congress for New Urbanism (CNU).   They entered the contest because they believe in the design principles of new urbanism and wanted to do a film on the subject.  If they win they get to attend the 17th CNU conference for free.  

The task was simple, “create an original three-minute video that illustrates how the principles of New Urbanism — density, design, and walkability — can effectively respond to current environmental challenges that we face.”  So if you have time, and are so inclined, check it out at and give it a rating.  Also, if you like the video could you spread the word to your cyber friends and/or post a link on your blog and website?  The more views they get the better off they’ll be.

Does Sweden Have A Socialist Nightmare

Earlier today I did a link to this video on the The Daily Show with Jon Steward about the socialist system in Sweden   It has raised quite a bit of discussion on facebook so I thought that I would link to it here too.  What do you think – is this a nightmare or is it a dream?

To be honest growing up in Australia where we had a partially socialized medical system and then working in New Zealand where health care was more fully socialized I can see both good and bad in the socialized system.  Yes taxes are higher but one does not live in fear of losing everything you have when you get ill. And I must say that 4 – 6 weeks vacation a year is rather nice too.  

Would love to hear your thoughts.  Check out the video here 

(I know I should be able to embed this but have not been able to figure it out so ideas on that would be appreciated too.  Obviously not as techi as I thought)

Justice for the Gardeners

A couple of days ago Pat Loughery sent me a link to the trailer for the film The Garden.  You probably realize that I am not a film buff because I rarely blog about what I have seen or want to see but this is definitely one that catches my imagination,.  Thanks Pat for the recommendation.  

THE GARDEN is an engaging and powerful look at the famous political and social battle over the largest community garden in the US (located in South Central Los Angeles)…. THE GARDEN exposes the fault lines in American society and raises crucial and challenging questions about liberty, equality, and justice for the poorest and most vulnerable among us. 

View trailer here

Speaking of gardening films, my all time favourite is Greenfingers which is about a group of British prisoners who find their redemption through gardening.  It is based on a true story and I think that it is a wonderful inspiration for all garden enthusiasts.   


Bad Vicar – That Mitchell and Webb Look

This is hilariously funny but unfortunately I think that it is the way that many outside the church view Christians.  A sobering thought for us to ponder as we continue our journey through Lent.  

The Birth of Jesus by Give Up Yer Aul Sins

Someone just gave me the link to this delightful Irish series of videos. It includes the original Oscar-nominated short, from Brown Bag Films based upon the 1960s recordings of young children telling Bible stories in a classroom to their schoolteacher. You may have a little trouble with the accent but the humour carries through in any language.   Give Up Yer Aul Sins has screened in almost 50 film festivals, including The Galway Film Fleadh (where it won Best Animation), Cork Film Festival (Best Irish and Best International Animation), Cartoons on Bay (Special Award for Original Idea), NewYork Comedy Festival, Boston Irish Film Festival, Aspen Film Festival and Cannes Film Festival.

Invisible children

For those that are in Seattle, here is something you might like to check out.

Quest Church and Q Cafe is privileged to partner together to host a screening of the new film, ”Black is for Sunday,” from the non-profit international organization, Invisible Children.  Film will be shown on Monday, March 31 – 7-9pm at Q Cafe with some brief discussion afterwards.  Read more 

Persepolis – The Movie

My good friend and colleague Eliacin Rosario Cruz just informed me that Persepolis will soon be out at an animated film.  Check out the trailer on his blog