The Wealth of the Poor by Larry James
How Valuing Every Neighbor Restores Hope in Our Cities

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While some of James' examples may not translate well beyond Dallas, his fresh engagement with the practicalities of "loving one's neighbor" in an era of austerity will inspire readers everywhere.
-Publishers Weekly


A compelling memoir by an urban minister and community development practitioner with more than thirty years of experience in the field Larry James appeared to be exactly where he was supposed to be--ministering with a large, suburban Dallas church. Then came the intriguing invitation to move his ministry to inner city Dallas among some of the "poorest" people in the community.

As the new director of a food pantry, Larry was quickly overwhelmed. One day when trying to communicate with Spanish-speaking families, he asked a woman named Josefina to help translate. She had come for assistance, but Josefina ended up helping Larry that day, and the next. She came back the next day for nine years.

Since that day Josefina began helping two decades ago, Larry has been asking neighbors to help solve their own problems, and this new way of serving side by side has transformed a small food pantry into one of the largest non-profit food distributors in the world. With a budget of fourteen million dollars annually, the organization--now called CitySquare--also develops housing for the formerly homeless and manages health clinics and community medical outreach in economically depressed and under-served places like East and South Dallas.

This is an organizational success story you expect to see in the Wall Street Journal, and yet it is like no other. The author's own journey provides the platform from which he provides a practical, theological, market-savvy manual written for others who find themselves serving and investing in the work of urban transformation. Using the foundation of Jesus' teaching and love for the poor, the book shows practical and visionary ways Christ's teaching can be made real.

About Larry James

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Richard J. Gerrig is a professor of psychology at Stony Brook University. Before joining the Stony Brook faculty, Gerrig taught at Yale University, where he was awarded the Lex Hixon Prize for teaching excellence in the social sciences. Gerrig's research on cognitive psychological aspects of language use has been widely published. One line of work examines the mental processes that underlie efficient communication. A second research program considers the cognitive and emotional changes readers experience when they are transported to the worlds of stories. His book "Experiencing Narrative Worlds "was published by Yale University Press. Gerrig is a Fellow of both the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science.He is also an associate editor of "Psychonomic Bulletin & Review," Gerrig is the proud father of Alexandra, who at age 16 provides substantial and valuable advice about many aspects of psychology and life in the 21st century. Life on Long Island is greatly enhanced by the guidance and support of Timothy Peterson. Philip G. Zimbardo is an emeritus professor of psychology at Stanford University, where he has taught since 1968, after earlier teaching at Yale University, New York University, and Columbia University. He also continues to teach atthe Naval Post Graduate School in Monterey. Zimbardo is internationally recognized as the "voice and face of contemporary psychology" through his widely seen PBS-TV series, Discovering Psychology, his media appearances, best-selling trade books on shyness, and his classic research, The Stanford Prison Experiment. His current research interests are in the domain of experimental social psychology, with ascattered emphasis on everything interesting to study from shyness to time perspective, persuasion, cults, madness, violence, vandalism, political psychology, and terrorism. Zimbardo has been a prolific, innovative researcher across a number of fields in social and general psychology, with more than 300 professional articles and chapters and 50 books to his credit. To recognize the breadth of his research achievements, the American Psychological Association presented Zimbardo with the Ernest Hilgard Award for lifetime contributions to general psychology. He has also won the Vaclav Havel Foundation Award for his body of research on the human condition. Zimbardo has been President of the Western Psychological Association (twice), President of the American Psychological Association, Chair of the Council of Scientific Society Presidents (CSSP), and now Chair of the Western Psychological Foundation and Director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Policy, Education, and Research on Terrorism. He is most excited about the publication of his new trade book in March 2007 (Random House), which he has been working on intensely for the past several years. Its domain is the psychology of evil; its provocative title: "The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil.
Published April 23, 2013 by Abilene Christian University Press. 289 pages
Genres: Religion & Spirituality. Non-fiction
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Publishers Weekly

Above average
on Jun 17 2013

While some of James' examples may not translate well beyond Dallas, his fresh engagement with the practicalities of "loving one's neighbor" in an era of austerity will inspire readers everywhere.

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