All posts by Sophia Drager

Callings 1: The Early Church

Describe

In Honors we read about the early church, which was rapidly growing, and where many pious people were disciplining their bodies and spirits for Christ. Some people experienced martyrdom, and others chose to become an athlete in the monastic life. One story we read was about a nun who feigned madness. She was a nun who lived for Christ and “fulfilled the Scriptures.” The nun showed humility in all of her actions and took on the role of a servant to remain humble throughout her life. 

The nun pretended to be possessed so that no one would talk to her. She was known as the “sponge” of the monastery, soaking up Scripture and fulfilling them. She wore a rag on her head instead of cowls. She only ate crumbs from the table, and she was never angry or grumbled. In The Nun Who Feigned Madness, an angel told Saint Piteroum about the nun. He visited her, but she did not want to see him. After visiting her, he asked for her blessing and she did the same from him. The other nuns joined in and then confessed all the terrible things they did to the nun. After a while, the nun left because of all the praise and apologies. She followed Christ by attentively listening to Scripture, “fulfilling the Scriptures,” and living a humble life.

Interpret

Although the nun lived in isolation (though in a small community with other nuns away from public society) and tried to distance herself from those around her, she still lived a humble life of service and reverence to God. Many times it is easier to look at one’s own accomplishments and take pride in one’s actions, but the Christian vocation is to serve his or her neighbor without seeking a reward or high esteem. Martin Luther said, “A Christian is…lord of all, subject to none,” and “A Christian is…a dutiful servant of all, subject to all,” which means an individual is free through Christ’s death and resurrection, but is tied to God’s Will. He or she can freely serve others in Christ. Christ is a transformative power in a Christian’s heart and causes one to love and serve with humility.

Evaluate

The theme in the story of the nun who feigned madness is humility. The nun did not take pride in herself or look down upon others, but instead gave everything to God and only lived for Him. At my service site, the men and women who visit need help finding jobs, homes, or help with building a resume. It can be easy to take pride in what I do when I help them along their path of reentry into society. However, the nun is a good reminder to remain faithful, humble, and give glory to Christ.

Convocation 01-17-18 Book of the Year Panel

Describe

On January 17, 2018, Concordia Saint Paul held a convocation with a distinguished panel of authors and poets who contributed and edited the book of the year, A Good Time For Truth: Racism in Minnesota. Each guest read an excerpt from the book. Every piece was a personal story from his or her lives. Sun Yung Shin introduced the panel by reading a part of the introduction for the audience, including some history of her race. David Lawrence Grant recited the horrific experience of being arrested in 1970. He also briefly mentioned some examples of Domestic Terrorism such as 911, Jim Crow, and white colonists who, as Sun Yung Shin said earlier, helped “heathens who needed Christian saving.” What was the most surprising was when David Grant mentioned that there was a form that has been in use for a long time, but is now illegal. The form says, “I will not sell my house to a black person.” The third panelist, Vanessa Fuentes, wrote about her time growing up from college to the present, how she met a poet who was secretly an abusive alcoholic and how, after having children, she found escape. Finally, Shannon Gibney started by listing the young black men who were shot and killed by police officers. Shannon gave the perspective of what it is like to be a black mother: the fear a woman lives in everyday, hoping her child will one day grow up and flourish to an old age, instead of having her child seen as a dangerous individual with an expendable life. After listening to the panelists experiences, a time was opened up for questions.

 

Interpret

As a white person, I believe my role is to be an advocate by listening, supporting, and learning about racism and issues of social justice. Everyone has a vocation in life, called by God to be His child. The Christian vocation is to be a child of God, but also a daughter, a citizen, and an employee. Grant and Gibney both explained their vocation through their stories. Grant was arrested and became angry at the officers. However, he took a moment to reflect on his actions and chose to comply and act in love rather than retaliating and providing the officers a poor reason to use brutal force on him. Grant’s choice to act in love was his vocation as an African American citizen living in Chicago.  Gibney’s vocation is to be a mother. As a mother, she loves her son and sacrifices so much for him.

Evaluate

At Crossing Home, there are men and women of many different backgrounds and ethnicities who come in need of support and help. I have learned throughout my years of life to not judge a person, but meet him or her with an open mind. Sometimes it can be hard to keep an open mind when working with those who are recently released from prison, but I have met good men and women who have dealt with the police in negative ways. Not all of the men and women talk about race to me, but some do. The older men talk about their experiences to overcome the oppressing effects of racism and how being in touch with their roots empowered them to embrace their identities and work harder towards the future. Crossing Home offers a housing program to the recently released. Although the men are not completely free, due to parole, they certainly have more freedom than being in prison. However, living in a Crossing Home facility requires the user to fulfill rules, such as going to church, keeping the house clean, going to rehab, respecting roommates, and respecting employers. 

 

Art Exhibit 01-11-18

Describe:

On Thursday, January 11, 2018, Concordia Saint Paul’s Art Program held an exhibit featuring Jennifer Her’s graduating art portfolio and simultaneously held the 15th Annual High School Honors Exhibition. Jennifer Her named her portfolio “Rest” because she is an over thinker and her time to be at rest is when she is making art. She wanted to express to the audience that her art is a representation of her thought processes and a way to find identity and free her mind. For example, in her piece “Rooted,” black, white, and gray yarn was hung from the ceiling as a large mass while having yarn tendrils spilling onto the floor. This piece describes her thinking as being connected and growing so that the roots, while holding her thoughts together, create an opportunity for new thought to stem out, to explore and reach out to create new ideas. The yarn does have an end, symbolizing there is an end and eventual rest to her thoughts. Her whole exhibit was black and white, but the artist did not record her reasoning.

The second exhibit, the 15th Annual High School Honors Exhibit, held a wide variety of art being displayed.  The exhibit contained paintings, drawings, photographs, ceramics, sculptures and some mixed media creations.   Many of the pieces featured and showed great detail which highlight the talent these artists have been given and have fostered. However, two pieces stood out to me: the large sculpture and the Hot Springs painting. Compared to many sculptures displayed in previous art exhibits, A Dreamer’s Worst NIghtmare by Audrey Daul, was assembled together in a rough style and was completed so it looked as if it were done almost carelessly.  This piece was intriguing and very thought provoking. This artistic creation included laminated job, housing, healthcare, and immigration tests. There were two outfits in their piece: an orange jumpsuit that said “illegal alien,” and a soldier’s camouflage pants. Next to the camouflage pants was a board that read, “PROTECT YOUR DREAMS.” On top of the board was a Spanish translation dictionary that had the word “espera”, meaning hope or a wish, circled. Finally, three pairs of shoes: a man’s sandals, a woman’s work shoes, and a toddler’s tennis shoes hung from the painted, wooden structure. The structure was built in an ascending fashion to help the audience understand the phases of an immigrant’s life.

Hot Springs was created by Laura Martin. The small piece of art was not mentioned during the judging process, but I believe it deserves some outside credit. The small painting was of a geyser with trees in the background and steam rising from the water. It was interesting to see how well the transparency of the steam was integrated on the painting and how crisp and clear the art was, considering it was a painting.

Interpret:

The two themes that encompass this high school art exhibit and the graduating portfolio are dreams and the colors of black and white. However, as the Honors class learned in the ways of knowing, information is not black and white, but a variety of grayish colors. Dreams can create reality, but there is also a sense of unknowing, or a gray area, in dreams. What people want does not always align with what is going to happen. That uncertainty can be scary and lived out in many situations. Yet, there are people who can find rest in the unknown and begin to dive into uncertainty through learning.  That is what students in the Honors program are doing this semester by volunteering at different sites in the community to bring positive change to the environment. Before beginning at the volunteer sites, students did not know what to expect, who they would meet, or what situations they would be put into.  Honors students discovered the service sites were nothing to be fearful of and bring good to many people. These sites bring people hope and ease the transition of the unknown whether the unknown is the loss of a job,  homelessness or serving a prison sentence.   One of the sculptures at the exhibit portrayed possible unknowns people may encounter and potential unrest people deal with in life.  This sculpture shows many of the challenges people in the community are facing. Honors students are focused on supporting people with some of the same uncertainties and life challenges. This includes supporting those in need by finding clothing, represented in the shoes.  Helping others in this way removes the ascending challenges they may face, as shown in the art structure. 

Evaluate:

Art exhibits are hard to evaluate. Art is vague and can have many meanings behind any given piece. However, the exhibit as a whole tied together the ways of knowing, or unknowing, and my volunteer site. Before I went into Prison Ministry, I was told by friends and family that I was extremely brave and should be certain to be aware of my surroundings, people, and interactions with ex-convicts so I could be safe. After going to the site, I realized it was not as bad as everyone thought it would be.  It was interesting and even enjoyable while meeting with ex-convicts. I lived in an unknown gray area thinking all convicts are mean criminals and not necessarily normal people. I was not fearful and found rest in the unknown by keeping an open mind and serving with an open heart. I am enjoying my service with ex-convicts, am learning to understand their perspective and how they prepare to make the big and often difficult transition into the next stage of their lives.

“Make It A Day On, Not A Day Off” MLK Blog

Describe

On Monday, January 15th, 2018, Concordia Saint Paul hosted the Concordia’s 10th annual MLK Day of Service. The event started with Martin Luther King’s speech spoken by Sumeya Nur, Anthony Herr, and Theodosia Wonlon. Next TraeElle spoke a poem called, “Young, Black, and Gifted” by Walter J. Irvine. TraeElle emphasized the poem’s inspiring words that not only is the character, “Young, Black, and Gifted,” but all people present today are young and gifted. By being at the MLK day of Service, each person is taking on their calling to serve and put their gifts to use.
Finally, Mikayla Smith had a speech about each person’s duty to serve and do something as an individual that they are passionate about. She mentioned that each student at CSP has an opportunity to make a change. The students are the ones who are the driving force of change in society and CSP’s community.

Every volunteer group had the opportunity to choose one of several different sites at which to serve . The green group, my group, went to the Episcopal Church Home and sang praise and worship songs to the elderly in attendance.  The residents sang, clapped, and talked with many of the volunteers. After visiting the MLK Day volunteer sites, all volunteer groups came back to Concordia to debrief and share some of the more inspiring stories of the group encounter from each site.

 

Interpret

Martin Luther King Jr. Day was signed as a federal holiday in 1983 to be a national day of service. The day of service “empowers individuals, strengthens communities, bridges barriers, creates solutions to social problems, and moves us closer to Dr. King’s vision of a ‘Beloved Community’” (AASCU). This semester, the Honors class is motivated to stretch the day of service to a more long-term, continued volunteer service. Martin Luther King Jr. wanted to unite people, and through his holiday, many people across the nation can connect to bring hope to the community. An Honors student’s job is to volunteer this semester and bring hope to the community. Although the hope each student will bring is an everlasting hope that is only found in Christ Jesus, it is being accomplished through Honor students serving with prison ministries, homeless shelters, children’s charities, Lutheran Family services, and more.

 

Evaluate

All of the volunteers split up into groups to go to volunteer sites. My group, the smallest group, went to Episcopal Church Homes in Saint Paul with the Concordia Gospel Choir to sing praise and entertain residents. I love meeting new people and singing for Christ. As a future educator in the church, I believe local community service is a great focus when preaching the Gospel. Many young adults look overseas to spread the Good News while missing the mission to share the Good News with their neighbors. When I am in a church, I would like to take students, adults (younger and older), college and career age people, or the church choir to a local nursing home regularly to build relationships and share the love of Christ. I understand that not all people are driven to work with children in a daycare setting and not all people are comfortable around older generations, but getting a good mix can ease nerves and form community and faith-based friendships. I loved going to the Church Home. It was a phenomenal experience, and Dr. Chatman made sure everyone felt comfortable, enthusiastic, and focused on Christ.

 

References

Martin Luther King Jr., Day of Service. (n.d.). Retrieved January 15, 2018, from

http://www.aascu.org/programs/ADP/MLKDay/

Martin Luther & the Called Life

Describe:

Chapter three, “Baptism and the Called Life,” from Martin Luther and the Called Life emphasized deep insights into how vocation can be lived out in different contexts and how baptism is tied to vocation. In Martin Luther’s day, people would baptize children to ensure a spot in heaven because the death rate was extremely common for newborns. Later, when Luther was in the monastery, he contemplated his life and the meaning of baptism and vocation. In the sixteenth century, if a person was not called into the monastery, also known as the second baptism, then he or she would not be considered to have a vocation (48). Not only did Martin Luther write about his opposition to the idea of medieval vocation, but he acted by leaving the monastery, recognizing the other roles he had, and explaining the vocations he carried out daily. Mark Tranvik, the author of Martin Luther and the Called Life, says,

“Leaving the world in the name of achieving one’s own personal salvation is contrary to what God intended for creation. Much better (and holier!) to be a husband, wife, family member, and servant and live in the world in service of the neighbor than to search for a realm where one might seek a selfish purity” (59).

Interpret:

Martin Luther understands that a person has more than one calling in life as a way to fulfill God’s will. God’s will is not tied to life and service inside a monastery, but is modeled through the active sharing of the Gospel as individuals live faith through daily actions and interactions with others. Baptism is one way to claim identity in Christ. According to Mark Tranvik, Baptism is not merely an “initiation rite” (55). Instead, “baptism not only anchors the believer in Christ; it is also the sacrament of daily life” (54). Baptism is a means of grace and the adoption process into the family of God that physically identifies our status as a child of God. A person who is born does not choose to be a daughter or grow up to be a mother. They are given the role through birth and maturation. Martin Luther recognized that baptism works in a similar way. A person who is baptized not only identifies as a child of God, but also daily dies and rises with Christ through living out his or her faith. Each Honors student is being challenged to live out faith in Christ through his or her calling and serving those in need. Although not all Honors students are future church workers, each of us is called to use our unique God-given gifts and talents to share the Gospel and assist to bring beneficial change to the community. Any Christian can be and is called to live out the Gospel daily, by living a Christ-like life as a mother, daughter, brother, citizen, congregant, employee, and friend.

Evaluate:

As a future Director of Christian Education, I could see myself giving this book to new or existing members who are questioning vocation, what baptism means, or have questions about what it means to live missionally on a daily basis. I thought chapter three summarized the meaning of baptism and vocation well by not only tying the two concepts together, but by looking at vocation from a new perspective that Luther had questioned as well. Many congregants and young adults question their calling in life, but do not recognize their role as a citizen as a vocation. This has been helpful to me as I am now much more aware and cognizant of the many callings I have as daughter, student, citizen, musician, and friend. Looking at these other roles helps me apply my identity (and vocation) as a child of God to all of my callings.

 

Networked

Framing

Lee Rainie and Barry Wellman both experts in technology co-wrote the book Networked: The New Social Operating System. Lee Rainie, a graduate of Harvard University and has a master’s degree in political science from Long Island University, is the director of internet and technology at the Pew Research Center. Barry Wellman, researches social network theories and virtual communities. “He directs NetLab, is the S.D. Clark Professor at the Department of Sociology, is a member of the Cities Centre, and the Knowledge Media Design Institute, and is a cross-appointed member of the Faculty of Information”. Networked was written to the general public and those interested in technological advances and connectivity over the internet.

Content and Methodology

Networked is divided into three sections: The Triple Revolution, How the Networked Individualism Works, and How to Operate in a Networked World, Now and in the Future.

The Triple Revolution pertained to the social media revolution, the internet revolution, and the mobile revolution. These three revolutions led to more advances in society and changes in the American culture to implement the use of ICT’s and create more individualism online. Individualism was the reoccurring theme throughout Networked. Rainie and Wellman have a positive outlook on the advancements in technology and reconsider the thought of isolation. Instead of seeing a person on his or her phone as aloof, one “can be physically in one place while their social attention and communication focus is elsewhere.. Called ‘absent presence’”. The authors argue that the emerging opportunities to create individualism in the virtual world has also created more opportunities for individuals to expand connections through common interests.

Although the technological world has advanced and increased the individual’s cultural experiences and broaden the online experience, personal relationships have been neglected and altered. The Networked individualism looks at five aspects of a person’s life: relationships, families, work, creators, and information. Families are able to easily access one another at anytime of day almost anywhere, but now families are potentially identified as core networks. Due to the shift in culture from door-to-door (a network system built in the neighborhood) to person-to-person contacts (a broad range of networks created from the technological advances), family members are spending more time on a screen than in the present. Balancing relationships is now hard to do with the new technology, but balance is possible.

The last section, How to Operate in a Networked World, Now and in the Future, focuses on the warnings of technology. The warning guidelines are helpful reminders to to be more conscientious of the existing relationships and balance life on and off line. Some of the warnings include: controlling your social media to manage your reputation, manage time well on social media (have a purpose to be online.) , do not overshare (oversharing enforces the feeling of zero privacy.), and be aware of the invisible audience (there are sinister people online, business competitors, and others who want to know many things about the individual. Although these audience members have gathered plenty of data to target the individual, he or she should not overshare and stay conscious of how social media is used.). The coauthors also highlighted six literacies to help the individual become more aware, nimble, and focused on oneself and his or her online usage in the ever changing culture today.

Analysis

Networked provided great insight on personal identity on technology. However, Rainie and Wellman also discussed the negative effects technology has on family structures and relationships today. Networked mainly focused on the positive effects and briefly looked at the negative effects. The chapter Networked Creators resonated with me well. This chapter reflected me and the American culture’s perception of social media to express one’s self, connecting with a community, and some individuals’ hope to gain glory. While the individual creates his or her own network, filtering information is equally important. Through the use of statistics, the coauthors were able to articulate the accelerated shift in the the technology and America’s culture. They brought up many points to support and awaken the individual to these changes. Technology will not be going away anytime soon, one should take the opportunity to learn about the future and how to grow with technology in a healthy way, rather than allowing technology to control everyday life.

Work Cited

“Barry Wellman.” NetLab, WordPress, groups.chass.utoronto.ca/netlab/barry-wellman/.

Suh, Michael. “Lee Rainie.” Pew Research Center, Pew Research Center, 24 Jan. 2015, www.pewresearch.org/staff/lee-rainie/.

 

The Shallows Book Review

FRAMING

Nicholas Carr is a journalist, blogger, and author of books and articles about technology and today’s culture. He has a Bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College and a Masters from Harvard University in English, American Literature, and Language. When Carr was first starting his career, he became the editor of the Harvard Business Review and then joined “the steering board of the World Economic Forum’s cloud computing project” (Nicholas Carr).

Carr wrote several books about technology including The Shallow, to educate the public interested in the advancements in technology and how culture and human behavior has adapted to these changes. Through the combination of Carr’s personal experience and selective citation of scientific data, he created The Shallows, an argumentative paper about the importance to understand, “a medium’s content matters less than the medium itself in influencing how we think and act. As our window onto the world, and ourselves, a popular medium molds what we see and how we see it—and eventually, if we use it enough, it changes who we are, as individuals and as a society” (page 3).

CONTENT AND METHODOLOGY

Nicholas Carr took another approach at exploring the evolution of publicizing information, language, and how new technologies has impacted today’s culture. Carr argues that the medium is the message and that the brain is not determined by technology, but the internet has a strong impact on the brain and society. The Shallows begin by reflecting on Marshal MacLuhan’s prophesies about technology in the 1960’s. MacLuhan first stated that the medium is the message and Carr would agree. From radio to color television, technology has shaped the American culture. Throughout this book, Carr explains the pros and cons to technology and the implications can be drawn from each chapter. The chapter “Hal and Me” raises a common fear among Americans—that robots will take jobs away and eventually obliterate the human race. Although this is a common fear in America, some would argue that this will not happen for centuries down the line or at all.

MacLuhan, an author from the 1960’s, would say, “The mediums content matters less than the medium itself in influencing how we think and act” (page 3). This statement supports Carr’s claim that technology is just a tool, but the brain is in control. Through Nietzsche, Freud, William James, and Merzenich studies on the brain, Carr concluded that the brain is not plastic, but elastic.

Throughout time, the medium of messages has changed, which greatly influenced society. Many cultures used oral language before advancing to written languages on papyrus and stone tablet. This lead to correct grammar and eventually the creation of the television, radio, and phonograph. Now, there is two-way communication called the internet. The internet is not only transmitting messages to the general public, but the public can input messages back. The internet has changed society significantly and tricks people into thinking that they can multitask. Carr would infer that this idea of multitasking leads to more distractions and searching the internet can best be related to a jet skier, who never gets into the water to explore because they skim over information. The rise in Taylorism led to common act of skimming over information and the creation of google search. The internet, google search, and computers allowed the brain to have an external hard-drive on hand, so there is no need to do extensive research or the brain to hold large amount of information.

ANALYSIS 

Although The Shallows argues the brain is elastic and not determined by technology, it is shaped by the technological advances in society. I would agree with Nichols Carr, that the brain is not dependent on technology, but through the advances in society there is less need to store information within one’s brain. Rather, an external hard-drive like the internet has accommodated people to search new information almost simultaneously at a rapid pace, not requiring them to fully be immersed into a topic. The technological advances that have been made in society are great, but they can hinder an individual’s ability to fully grasp concepts without being distracted.

Work Cited

“Nicholas Carr.” Nicholas Carr, Word Press, www.nicholascarr.com/

Who’s In Charge? Book Review

FRAMING

Although Gazzaniga believes in evolution, he puts into question if people have free will in Who’s In Charge? In relation to the science of the brain. Michael S. Gazzaniga, the author of Who’s In Charge?, is a neuroscientist who is very in-tune with his passions and a part of many elite organizations.  He is director of the SAGE Center for the Study of the Mind at the University of California, the president of the Cognitive Neuroscience Institution, the founding director of the MacArthur Foundation’s Law and Neuroscience Project, and a member of many other organizations. Gazzaniga wrote, “I will maintain that the mind, which is somehow generated by the physical processes of the brain, constrains the brain” (Gazzaniga, 4). His book answers the tough questions of how people make decisions, why people behave the way they do, and if people actually have free will and to what extent.

CONTENT AND METHODOLOGY 

Who’s In Charge? explains theories of brain development to gain a better understanding of the complexity of the human mind and brain. These theories led to Gazzaniga’s conclusion of the brain’s function and the extent of free will a person has. Throughout time, processes of the brain developed and ideas such as equipotentiality, neural specificity, and activity dependent processes emerged. Gazzaniga knows that even though the brain has many different parts, each part is dependent of the other to function as a whole. He goes on to state that interconnectivity of neuronal functions varies from person to person. Throughout the book, Gazzaniga gives empirical data and shares case studies to argue that, “Years of split brain research have made clear to us that the brain is not an all purpose computing device, but a device made up of an enormous number of serially wires specialty circuits, all running in parallel and distributed across the brain to make those better decisions” (69). He supports this quote by explaining that a person’s actions can not be predicted because of the chaos theory (117).

Gazzaniga argues that consciousness, which comes from the mind, is an illusion (75). Later, he states that free will does not emerge from the brain, yet the mind comes from the brain. “Responsibility and freedom are found… in the space between the brains, in the interactions between people” (137). Therefore, free will is an illusion as well and morality, choices, and responsibility comes from outside source. In the chapter of the Social Mind, Gazzaniga mentions, “Neurons that fire together, wire together” but somethings are innate (13). The five cognitive abilities, moral modules, and mirror neurons are all examples of influences of outside sources to create the idea of free will.

ANALYSIS

Gazzaniga is a neuroscientist who believes in evolution and explained theories with extremely gruesome stories like the man who altered monkey’s brains. In the beginning, I felt skeptical of this book, but kept an open-mind due to his credentials. Through the many stories Gazzaniga shared, he took the reader through many adventures to understand their own mind and brain. As the book progressed he added ideas that supported his claim such as the chapter of the social mind. Gazzaniga built on his data, that consciousness comes from the mind and is an illusion. The mind comes from the brain, but free will does not. Therefore, free will is also an illusion because it is not an innate context (193). I did not fully grasp this concept until putting it in parallel with Freedom of a Christian. Martin Luther also rejects the idea of absolute free will, even though Christians are free from the law through Christ. Overall, the book revealed many insights on how the mind and brain work in relation to one another, but also how free will and responsibility comes from social interactions.

Bartling Lecture on The War on Poverty

Describe

On November 15, 2017, John Bouman spoke at the Bartling lecture. Bouman is a lawyer and the founder of the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law in Illinois. His educational lecture focused on the prevention of poverty and reflected on the history of The War on Poverty. In 1962, Michael Harent wrote a book called, The Other American, which stated that 22% of the American population was in poverty in 1959. That is roughly every one in five people in America. This was a shock to many Americans, including presidents Kennedy and Johnson. The War on Poverty all began during the Presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964. President Johnson spoke to Shriver, who ran The Peace Core at the time, and wanted him to run The War on Poverty as well. Eventually, he ran became “The President of Poverty”. Shriver and other political leaders had specific requirements in order for this War on Poverty to be successful. This included: 1. the knowledge that fighting poverty does not mean America needs a spending spree; 2. The key stakeholders are to bring hope and opportunity, not free handouts; 3. People will receive equity; 4. This war will help everyone, not just the poor.

Shriver supported the idea that all people, even the poor, have access to legal services. This created a legal reform around the time of President Nixon. In the 1990’s the government disputed if they should continue their funding of legal services. After six months of debating and stalling the policy work, the government decided to continue legal services. After this event, Bouman left Legal Services and founded Shriver Center. Through the rapidly growing business and impact the Shriver Center has had, lawyers can continue to humbly work with community leaders by advocating for the poor and working on policies to uplift those in poverty in America. Bouman ended with the statistic that poverty in America has decreased to 12.7%, but this does not mean that the government is done fighting and that Americans should ignore these concerns.

 

Integrate

Bouman discussed the effects poverty has on children and the stress it brings on brain development. Children do not have a choice of what social class they are born into, which influences their future as well. A child that is born into deep poverty can experience large amounts of trauma and stress, due to the overwhelming financial burden their parents may experience. Bouman stated that the stress is released by hormones that effect the developing brain. The Honors class talked about the brain and the reaction the body has to specific stimuli in relation to the brain and mind.

Evaluate

I liked the this lecture. I was not expecting it to be focused on the historical standpoint of a lawyer and the history of his company intertwining with the history relating to the previous presidency. Knowing this new information has given me a different perspective on the impact the government and influential people in America have to fight poverty. Bouman addressed in his lecture that poverty will not be eliminated, but it can be reduced significantly. He proved that history has been a reliable source to show Americans the impacts we have to reduce Poverty and make a difference in our economy.

Luther Play 10/27/17

Describe:

        From October 26-29, 2017, Concordia University presented the play Luther written by John Osborne.  The play was performed in celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation. Luther focuses on the Martin Luther becoming a monk and being a stakeholder in the Protestant Reformation. Luther does not solely focus on his traditional story. The play also focuses on the fatherly relationships in his life, even though it does not completely align with his original story. However, Luther covers his life from the beginning, his life in the monastery, the Peasant’s Revolt, and ends on him beginning his life with his wife Katherine Von Bora.

Integrate:

        The Honors class learned about building communities and what different groups of people look like when gathered together. The play showed many dynamics of groups. Although Luther was not a group, he was a leader and an individual reformer in the crowd of Catholic believers who created a new group. The monks were also a crowd of people within the monastery and the peasants during the revolt who became a mob. All of these groups experienced isolation, whether social from the monks being in the monastery, educational with the peasants being restricted from a higher education, or religious when the peasants did not understand the gospel and needed someone to teach them the Word.

Evaluate:

        I attended Luther on Friday, October 27, 2017. The play was fabulous! I did think it went on for a long time, but it contained humorous jokes to keep the play somewhat light-hearted. The cast did a fantastic job performing, keeping in character, and transitioning between scenes. Alex Johnson did a great job acting as Luther. The entire cast filled their roles well and made me feel that it was their true identity. Although I cannot say Luther is my favorite play, I thoroughly enjoyed it and it is in my top three.