To the Cross and Back

Author: Fernando Alcántar
Publisher: Pitchstone Publishing (US&CA)
ISBN: 1634310500
Format: PDF
Download Now
A Mexican immigrant and rising star within the Christian community abandons his faith and comes out as a gay atheistIn this exceptionally moving and soul-searching memoir, Fernando Alcántar recounts his incredible journey from poor Catholic boy on the dusty streets of Mexico to globetrotting missionary and high-profile Christian leader in the United States—where he eventually left his celebrated life behind to advocate for the liberating power of reason and equality. With heart-wrenching honesty, he shares stories of trauma, tragedy, prejudice, uncertainty, survival, and, ultimately, discovery. In the process, he gives a voice to thousands who are hiding in the shadows, afraid to publicly question their religious or sexual identity for fear of isolation and retaliation. He also makes a call for tolerance and understanding, while heralding the natural beauty of human qualities like courage, kindness, and love.

Rise and Fall of Faith

Author: Drew Bekius
Publisher: Pitchstone Publishing (US&CA)
ISBN: 1634311116
Format: PDF, Docs
Download Now
The story of religion in the twenty-first-century West has been defined, in part, by the stories of once-zealous pastors moving beyond their faith to embrace a life of reason. But too often and too quickly ardent believers dismiss such accounts as aberrations and fail to consider the real-life implications for those who make this transition. Atheists and other skeptics, meanwhile, struggle to understand what took these individuals so long to make such a journey—and why others aren't lining up more quickly to do the same. As a result, the questions posed by one side inevitably mirror those asked by the other. Why do believers trust in God the way they do? But what factors lead atheists to dismiss religious beliefs so easily? How can believers have faith in the face of known science and history? But what allows anyone to be so sure their beliefs are based in reality? What would it take for believers to stop believing in God? But what would it take for nonbelievers to start to believe? Drawing on the author's own story as a former evangelical pastor powerless to stop his turn to atheism, The Rise and Fall of Faith touches on these and other questions, inviting readers into a long-overdue conversation between Christians and atheists. While the aim of the book is to initiate this much-needed discussion, the author encourages all who care about the future of humanity to carry the dialogue forward—whether in the evaluation of our own inner thoughts, in the assumptions we make about the other side, or in how we work together in the pursuit of understanding and common ground as we navigate the world's ever-changing and increasingly challenging religious and cultural landscape.

Enrique s Journey

Author: Sonia Nazario
Publisher: Ember
ISBN: 0385743289
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download Now
Documents the journey of a Honduran teen who braved hardship and peril to reunite with his mother after she was forced to leave him behind and seek migratory work in the United States.

Writing God s Obituary

Author: Anthony B. Pinn
Publisher: Prometheus Books
ISBN: 1616148446
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
Download Now
A former African American minister reveals his unusual journey from faith to atheism. Anthony Pinn preached his first sermon at age twelve. At eighteen he became one of the youngest ordained ministers in his denomination. He then quickly moved up the ministerial ranks. Eventually he graduated from Columbia University and then received a Master of Divinity in theology and a PhD in religion from Harvard University. All the while, Pinn was wrestling with a growing skepticism. As his intellectual horizons expanded, he became less and less confident in the theism of his upbringing. At the same time, he became aware that his church could offer only anemic responses to the acute social needs of the community. In his mid-twenties, he finally decided to leave the ministry and committed the rest of his life to academia. He went on to become a distinguished scholar of African American humanism and religious history. The once fully committed believer evolved into an equally committed nonbeliever convinced that a secular approach to life offers the best hope of solving humanity’s problems. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Here I Am Tears of an African Immigrant

Author: Lisa Rufaro
Publisher: WestBow Press
ISBN: 1512797014
Format: PDF, Docs
Download Now
Lets be honest. We all have scars and dysfunctions and have been through something. You struggled through a life challenge. Your closest friend may not know it, but God does. What trials have happened or are still happening to you? Are you willing to show your scars? It takes faith to believe that the emotional and spiritual wounds of the trial are healed, even though there are still evident scars. God led my family and me through a testing trial to create high-level faith in our hearts. Sometimes God allows you to walk through your journey and lets you wander, question, and challenge your belief. As an episodic memoir, this book depicts childhood experiences in Zimbabwe and an expedited family relocation to the United States. Although settling in America came with its natural challenges, nobody in my family anticipated my older brother facing a spiritual condition that would inhibit him from even attending school for several years. Family strife from my fathers side of the family has played a huge role for the woman I have become today. I am thankful for them. It would all make more sense later as an adult when I learned of the biblical story of Joseph. There are clear parallel experiences. After experiencing such betrayal by close relatives, what would all the midnight tears accumulate to? Today, I have learned to say, Here I am, Lord. Have your way.

Global Crossings

Author: Alvaro Vargas Llosa
Publisher: Independent Inst
ISBN: 9781598131338
Format: PDF, Mobi
Download Now
"Migration has been happening, in varying forms, for millennia but it still elicits fear and mistrust, and not just on the part of the "receiving" society. Communities from where people migrate often disapprove of the migrants' decision and consider it treacherous. The recent reawakening of the debate about migration in the new millennium has evoked intense emotion particularly in the United States and Europe. Global Crossings cuts through the jungle of myth, falsehood and misrepresentation that dominates the debate, clarifying the causes and consequences of human migration. Why do millions of people continue to risk their lives, and oftentimes lose it, in the pursuit of a chance to establish themselves in a foreign land? The book first looks at the immigrant experience, which connects the present to the past, and America to the rest of the world, and explores who immigrants are and why they move. The conduct of today is no different than that in the past. And contrary to the claims by immigration critics, the patterns of contemporary migration do not differ fundamentally from those of other epochs. Global Crossings then discusses immigration and culture. To what degree are foreigners culturally different? Can natives adapt? Can immigrants assimilate into the new society? In assessing whether critics are justified in pointing to a major cultural shift Alvaro Vargas Llosa reviews such topics as religion, education, entrepreneurial spirit, and attitudes toward the receiving society. The book analyzes such economic factors as jobs, wages, education, and the welfare state. How can an economy continue to operate even in the face of major legal obstacles, and how have recessions and times of prosperity influenced--more significantly than government efforts--the number of immigrants coming into the United States and other countries? Vargas Llosa finds that immigration's contributions to an economy far outweigh the costs. Finally Global Crossings makes a call for open minds and provides a pro-immigration agenda for reform. The erosion of national boundaries is already underway as people become ever more inter-connected across borders. This process will make immigration a defining force in the arena of competitive globalization and the people of those countries who embrace immigration will enjoy more prosperous, peaceful, and freer lives in the emerging world."--Book jacket.

The Death of Josseline

Author: Margaret Regan
Publisher: Beacon Press
ISBN: 0807095435
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download Now
Dispatches from Arizona—the front line of a massive human migration—including the voices of migrants, Border Patrol, ranchers, activists, and others For the last decade, Margaret Regan has reported on the escalating chaos along the Arizona-Mexico border, ground zero for immigration since 2000. Undocumented migrants cross into Arizona in overwhelming numbers, a state whose anti-immigrant laws are the most stringent in the nation. And Arizona has the highest number of migrant deaths. Fourteen-year-old Josseline, a young girl from El Salvador who was left to die alone on the migrant trail, was just one of thousands to perish in its deserts and mountains. With a sweeping perspective and vivid on-the-ground reportage, Regan tells the stories of the people caught up in this international tragedy. Traveling back and forth across the border, she visits migrants stranded in Mexican shelters and rides shotgun with Border Patrol agents in Arizona, hiking with them for hours in the scorching desert; she camps out in the thorny wilderness with No More Deaths activists and meets with angry ranchers and vigilantes. Using Arizona as a microcosm, Regan explores a host of urgent issues: the border militarization that threatens the rights of U.S. citizens, the environmental damage wrought by the border wall, the desperation that compels migrants to come north, and the human tragedy of the unidentified dead in Arizona’s morgues. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Immigrant Voices

Author: Thomas Dublin
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
ISBN: 9780252062902
Format: PDF, ePub
Download Now
A collection of ten immigrant stories from 1773 to 1986 by men and women from European, Latin American, and Asian countries which are based on letters, diaries, and oral histories.

Girl in Translation

Author: Jean Kwok
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1101187484
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download Now
Introducing a fresh, exciting Chinese-American voice, an inspiring debut about an immigrant girl forced to choose between two worlds and two futures. When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to Brooklyn squalor, she quickly begins a secret double life: exceptional schoolgirl during the day, Chinatown sweatshop worker in the evenings. Disguising the more difficult truths of her life-like the staggering degree of her poverty, the weight of her family's future resting on her shoulders, or her secret love for a factory boy who shares none of her talent or ambition-Kimberly learns to constantly translate not just her language but herself back and forth between the worlds she straddles. Through Kimberly's story, author Jean Kwok, who also emigrated from Hong Kong as a young girl, brings to the page the lives of countless immigrants who are caught between the pressure to succeed in America, their duty to their family, and their own personal desires, exposing a world that we rarely hear about. Written in an indelible voice that dramatizes the tensions of an immigrant girl growing up between two cultures, surrounded by a language and world only half understood, Girl in Translation is an unforgettable and classic novel of an American immigrant-a moving tale of hardship and triumph, heartbreak and love, and all that gets lost in translation. Watch a Video

A Home on the Field

Author: Paul Cuadros
Publisher: Harper Collins
ISBN: 0061763454
Format: PDF, Kindle
Download Now
A Home on the Field is about faith, loyalty, and trust. It is a parable in the tradition of Stand and Deliver and Hoosiers—a story of one team and their accidental coach who became certain heroes to the whole community. For the past ten years, Siler City, North Carolina, has been at the front lines of immigration in the interior portion of the United States. Like a number of small Southern towns, workers come from traditional Latino enclaves across the United States, as well as from Latin American countries, to work in what is considered the home of industrial-scale poultry processing. At enormous risk, these people have come with the hope of a better life and a chance to realize their portion of the American Dream. But it isn't always easy. Assimilation into the South is fraught with struggles, and in no place is this more poignant than in the schools. When Paul Cuadros packed his bags and moved south to study the impact of the burgeoning Latino community, he encountered a culture clash between the long-time residents and the newcomers that eventually boiled over into an anti-immigrant rally featuring former Klansman David Duke. It became Paul's goal to show the growing numbers of Latino youth that their lives could be more than the cutting line at the poultry plants, that finishing high school and heading to college could be a reality. He needed to find something that the boys could commit to passionately, knowing that devotion to something bigger than them would be the key to helping the boys find where they fit in the world. The answer was soccer. But Siler City, like so many other small rural communities, was a football town, and long-time residents saw soccer as a foreign sport and yet another accommodation to the newcomers. After an uphill battle, the Jets soccer team at Jordan-Matthews High School was born. Suffering setbacks and heartbreak, the majority Latino team, in only three seasons and against all odds, emerged poised to win the state championship.