During the past year the film has been in over 300 screenings around the world attended by more than 21,000 people. But now we have an opportunity to spread the key message of the film to a larger audience: the most effective solutions to poverty lie in unleashing entrepreneurs to find new, innovative, and efficient ways to meet people’s needs.
3. The conference is open to undergraduate and graduate students, professors, non-profit professionals, pastors, seminarians, entrepreneurs, business people, and anyone interested in deepening their understanding of the integration of sound economics, rigorous philosophy, and the Judeo-Christian faith.
5. Out of all the conferences offered in the U.S. every year, Acton U is by far the one where you will learn the most about freedom and economics and meet the most intriguing people from around the world. It is also the greatest recurring event in the history of Grand Rapids, Michigan. (Note: Point #5 may stretch the meaning of the term “fact.”)
In honor of the 2016 Wilberforce Weekend, the Colson Center for Christian Worldview sponsored and the Washington Times Advocacy Department prepared a special report on energizing and equipping Christian leadership in the spirit of William Wilberforce.
Here is what I wanted to say in conclusion, and that is that Chuck Colson was no fake ecumenist. Chuck Colson was not interested in the form of ecumenism, where people would politely talk with one another so as to negotiate away the truths of the faith so that we can talk about how we liked one another so much.
Chuck was a man of real faith, a real conviction and a real honesty. He was also a man who is captivated by Jesus Christ, and it is that that drew he and I together, along with people like Cardinal Avery Dulles and Father Richard John Neuhaus, of happy memory. That was his ecumenism. His idea of ecumenism was that as we move closer to Jesus Christ, we look around and find that we have also moved closer to each other.
Earlier today Pope Francis, while answering a question about Donald Trump’s views on immigration, said that anyone who wants to build a wall isn’t a Christian. Trump responded by saying, “for a religious leader to question someone’s faith is disgraceful” adding, “If ISIS attacks the Vatican, which is their ultimate trophy, I bet the Pope would wish Donald Trump was president.”
Rev. Robert A. Sirico, president and co-founder of the Acton Institute, will discuss the controversy tonight on the Fox News Channel program, Hannity. Tune in tonight at 10 PM ET to watch the exchange.
Poverty Inc., an award-winning documentary that grew out of the Acton Institute’s PovertyCure initiative, tackles the question: Fighting poverty is big business, but who profits the most?
The Chronicle of Philanthropy recently interviewed Mark Weber, a co-producer of the film, and asked about how the documentary was being received:
Have you noticed different reactions from different audiences?
There’s one scene in particular that is perfectly indicative of the disconnect between the West and the rest. The physician and former aid consultant Theodore Dalrymple says, “I bought my first house on the proceeds of foreign aid. Aid has been very good to me. It’s aided me immensely. It’s allowed me to have an interesting life, to travel, no tax. It couldn’t be better.”
At most screenings — I’ll give the Minneapolis-St. Paul film festival as an example — a mostly white, liberal audience. You could just cut the tension in the room with a knife. That’s the norm; most people react that way.
But at predominantly African audiences — I’ll give the Africa Business Club at Harvard as an example — they played the film the opening night of the Africa Business Conference. When that scene comes up, the whole room was just uproarious, laughing and clapping and hooting and hollering and whistling. It wasn’t shocking to them. They all knew, and they were all thankful and appreciative of this guy for saying it out loud. Those different reactions are very revealing of different assumptions.
The film is not doing a whole lot more than trying to bridge that gap.
As we close out the year, we want to thank our PowerBlog readers for reading and contributing to our blog. If you’re a new reader we encourage you to catch up by checking out our top 10 most popular posts for 2015:
Pope Francis has released his eagerly anticipated encyclical on the environment, Laudato Si’. While the document deserves a close reading, it’s extreme length (80 pages/45,000 words) will make it difficult for many people to process. To help highlight some of the key points I’ve produced a section-by-section summary of the entire encyclical.
One could be forgiven for not understanding what Sanders means by “casino capitalism.” Is it crony capitalism, in which legislative favors are secured by the rich and powerful (which conservatives also disdain)? Is it bailouts for the big banks (which, again, conservatives also disdain)? Is it basic trade and exchange on a large, complex scale, and if so, at what size does it become problematic? Does he despise the stock exchange itself? Too loud with all its blinky lights and bells?
With seven words—“It is going to be an issue”—the U.S. government signaled to orthodox Christian colleges and universities that if they don’t drop their opposition to same-sex marriage they will lose their tax exempt status.
Poverty Inc., the new documentary that has grown out of the Acton Institute’s PovertyCure initiative, was awarded Atlas Network’s Templeton Freedom Award at an event last night in New York.
Brad Lips, chief executive of the Washington-based Atlas Network, which administers the award, said the documentary is “without question” worth the attention it is receiving. “Shining a light on an uncomfortable side of charity — where a paternalistic mindset puts the aid industry at the center of efforts to rescue the poor — Poverty, Inc. calls on us to embrace a different mental model,” he said. “The film makes a persuasive case that the most effective solutions to poverty lie in unleashing entrepreneurs to find new, innovative, and efficient ways to meet people’s needs.”
Acton Executive Director Kris Mauren said the award recognizes that the entire business of international development and foreign aid is at a tipping point. “While entrenched interests remain, mounting evidence is causing people of all political stripes to question whether their actions are really helping the poor,” he said. “This is where Poverty, Inc. comes in. Operating under the conviction that thoughtful documentaries change culture, we designed Poverty, Inc. to spearhead a broad reconsideration of poverty that is nonpartisan but pro-market.” (more…)