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O Come, O Come, Emmanuel: Advent and Waiting, Part 2

We are immersed in Advent now – most American Christians have trees strung with lights, bedecked with baubles and handmade ornaments, and perhaps even an early wrapped present or two hiding beneath the lowest boughs. Advent calendars – with little morsels of chocolate hidden behind paper doors – retell the story of Mary and Joseph […]

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How Doctors Talk: Medicine and the Misuse of Language

I am finishing my residency training at a large urban hospital in Boston. We sit miles away from some of the best research institutions in the world, and also amongst the most disenfranchised in the city. On many days this paradox is stifling – namely, the stark contrast between money for social services versus emerging […]

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Author: Sharon Azran/B’Tselem. Creative Commons license, from Wikimedia Commons. Source: http://www.btselem.org/photoblog/20140115_hebron

“There is no such thing as Palestine!”–Dispatch from Palestine

“You can’t teach me anything about Europeans,” once commented the deputy mayor of Jerusalem. Europeans had killed his father. “You can’t teach me anything about Palestinians.” Palestinians had killed his mother. The deputy mayor embodied a common sentiment among Zionists, many of whom had suffered dear losses to one or another enemy of the Jewish […]

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Photo courtesy of Twitter user neunjungle

Sanctifying Black Lives

Our nation is in spiritual crisis. As a nation, we have profaned the holiness of God as it is manifest in black lives. There are not sufficient words to describe the pain and injustice that is present in Ferguson, of which this week’s grand jury decision is only one piece. Hearts are breaking. People are […]

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Service, Social Media, and the Self – Part 2

The first part of this sermon can be found here. —- So far, I have talked about my experiences, because that’s all I can talk about. It would be wrong for me to tell you what your feelings are or should be. The idea of human engagement is a humbling one as you realize how […]

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Service, Social Media, and the Self – Part 1

Towards the end of October, I posted a call to action from a sermon I delivered, to help us think about gratitude and our obligations to one another. Here is an edited version of that sermon. — Today’s wa’ez is brought to you by the number “5” and the letter “P.” I fondly remember the […]

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10 Things I Wish Everyone Knew About Sikhism

Originally Published in OnFaith/FaithStreet Despite being one of the world’s largest world religions, Sikhism remains one of the most unknown traditions in America. The lack of understanding has had serious consequences, including discriminatory policies, bigoted stereotypes, traumatic school bullying and violent hate crimes. Here is a list of 10 things that the global community ought to […]

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Taken by author Jenn Lindsay in Dhesheh Refugee Camp, Palestine.

“This is our life.”–Dispatch from Palestine

Dhesheh Refugee Camp houses 17,000 people in less than 1 square kilometer. It was established for two waves of refugees in 1948 and 1967 by the United Nations, which is still in charge of providing medication, education, and maintenance. The streets were empty when we arrived at 10am. The night before, all night long, there […]

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A Dialogue Among the Deaf

On Tuesday, the uncle of one of my Arabic-language students was slaughtered by an axe-wielding Palestinian man in Synagogue as he prayed. On Tuesday, the uncle of one of my Arabic students was slaughtered by an axe-wielding Palestinian man in Synagogue as he prayed. On Tuesday, the uncle of one of my Arabic students was […]

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English: Walaja Barrier 2011. Author Wickey-nl. Creative Commons license. 31 March 2014. Source: Own work, based on http://www.ochaopt.org/documents/ocha_opt_the_closure_map_2011_12_21_bethlehem.pdf, published by United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHAoPt). http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Walaja_Barrier_2011.jpg

“You are an ambassador”–Dispatch from Palestine

We drive along the barbed electric fence that surrounds the Israeli settlement of Har Gilo.  We are headed to the Walajah valley of the Palestinian territory. The valleys are deep and lush with pine trees and olive groves, steppes cut into the hillsides with round white stones. The land here has been largely confiscated by […]

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