Armchair Interviews

armchairinterviews.com

Reviewed by Connie Anderson

In his Foreword, former President Bill Clinton states: Hunger affects 300 million children and really one billion people worldwide, mostly in Asia and Africa. Women and children suffer the most.

Mahatma Gandi said: "To a hungry person God can appear only as a piece of bread." Thus feeding the hungry has been at the heart of the Christian faith as well as other major religions and ethical systems.

The authors work across partisan political lines on what they believe is most important: combating malnutrition and hunger.

McGovern and Dole's interest is feeding children through school lunch programs. A New York Times article said, "If you feed children, they come to school and stay in school and they learn better."

Bread for the World organization reports that 36 million U.S. citizens--over 13 million children--live in homes without enough to eat. How do millions of people go hungry in this 21st Century that produces enough food for every man, woman and child?

Stop Hunger Now organization states: Every day 30,000 people die of starvation worldwide; that is 1 person every 3 seconds.

Within Jewish and Christian traditions, 8 overlapping themes exist:

  1. The reminder that God has created a world rich in abundance and meant for all people (1 Corinthians 10:26).

  2. Hunger theme appears often as a reminder of the precariousness of life and of God's gift of food. (Genesis 12:1k 37-50)

  3. Feeding the hungry is both a moral obligation and a religious requirement. (Isiah 58.7)

  4. Sharing is the essence of the spiritual life. (Matthew 14:13-21)

  5. Failure to feed the hungry is deemed a sin. (Job 22:7)

  6. Both Jewish and Christian rituals emphasize the importance of sharing food. (1 Corinthians 11:28-32)

  7. Abolishing hunger on earth has always been a religious imperative. (Revelations 7:16-17)

  8. Christians of all theological persuasions believe that the cry of the hungry is actually the voice of God. (Matthew 25:40)

Each chapter ends with very search-the-soul questions that get up and personal--and may hurt or embarrass us. The book gives research and the www.EndingHungerNow.org site has congregational usage guides and important links.

Armchair Interviews says: This is a real kick-in-the-church-pew book.


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