Towards A Good Samaritan World

Tuesday, January 11, 2005


This is the kind of comment I love:

Re: your website article "Work, Service and Worship:" it is the most revolutionary thing I have ever seen, both in economics and in charity, especially Christian charity. May I have your permission to quote from it?...

As a former economics teacher, a minister and charitable entrepreneur who has helped a few thousand exit poverty, with tough-love insistence on employment and with high success rates, I have thought about helping the poor a lot, and learned a lot about it. You just can't imagine the effect your article had on me.

I wrote "Work, Service and Worship" last summer, and tried to publish it in First Things magazine, without success. It's framed as a response to John Edwards' speech at the Democratic convention, which at this point is a weakness of the essay, but it contains (what I hope are) lasting insights about the relationship between self-interest and charity, and about the theology of labor. At least one person is convinced! With a recommendation like that, maybe other readers will check it out? Since most pages of the essay have less than 20 hits so far, I know that not many people have read it. (Of course, I gave Gerry permission to quote it.)

Potentially, I would even like to expand the essay into a longer work.


  • I found that essay excellent. I think I'll read it to my 8th grade students for a creative writing prompt. Thanks for the hint!

    By Blogger kathianne, at 11:39 AM  

  • Congratulations on your wonderful honeymoon trip! And thanks for your comment on my comment.

    Actually, I never got your response, and re-read your post tonight (1-25-05) to see if you had by chance responded there. So I was gratified to see your permission to quote you there.

    However, the timing was off. Since I had not heard from you, I sent off the article without the quote. But as I have not yet heard back from the editor, perhaps I can "revise and extend my remarks." Will let you know what happens.

    Thanks again for the permission.
    Gerry Phelps

    By Blogger Gerry, at 9:40 PM  

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