Melba Padilla Maggay is an anthropologist who unapologetically interposes the religious lens into her critical examination of contemporary social and economic systems. The result is a stunning study that casts new light on the old issues of poverty, inequality, and underdevelopment in a globalized world. Drawing from case studies of Protestant evangelical organizations engaged in various projects of popular empowerment, as well as from her own rich personal reflections, she weaves a compelling narrative of the contradictions, limits, and possibilities of different modes of interventions in the uplift and emancipation of the poor. In the process, she advances an eloquent case for spirituality as the quest for infinite meaning in a world overrun by sectarian strife, consumerist excess, despair, loneliness, and cynicism, This is a unique book on the theory and practice of solidarity that academics, social activists, development agencies, and religious congregations alike will find immensely relevant to their work. Randolf S. David, Emeritus Professor of Sociology, University of the Philippines Dr. Maggay's study of the interrelationship of Culture, Religion and Development identifies the gaps between Development Values that shape much of policy and strategy and ""the persistent religiosity and traditionalism of the voiceless poor."" Melba asserts that change happens only within the terms determined by the narrative of a culture which at its roots is religiously based. She calls for a 'Cultural Adjustment Program.' There is a wealth of such insight and knowledge in this excellent study for development planners and activists. I commend it with enthusiasm. Vinay Samuel was head of the Oxford Center for Mission Studies and Executive of the Oxford Centre for Religion and Public Life. My manuscript copy of Rise Up and Walk is battered, dog-eared, underlined, highlighted and scribbled upon. Clearly it is not a book to be ignored Indeed, it is a profoundly challenging and practical engagement with the grievous injustice of persistent poverty and oppressive greed. Full of passion, grace and hope, it is beautifully written and inspiring to read. Biblical insight and stories are woven into a compelling narrative and analysis. This is an important read for anyone who wants to better understand what it means to do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with God."" Steve Bradbury is Director of the Micah 6:8 Center at Tabor College Victoria, formerly Director of Tearfund Australia and Chair of the Micah Network. This remarkable book could only be written by someone unique like Melba Maggay herself. On every page the reader is struck by the wonderful combination of great spiritual gifts and deep practical wisdom. It is a combination which has grown from the soil of a life-long commitment with the cause of the poor, fed by a vivid interest in human culture, especially those Asian cultures which live now under the threat of alienation or elimination. Reading of this book is a must for all who are longing for more responsible social, economic and political developments. Dr. Bob Goudzwaard is an economist and was chair of ICCO, Netherlands and advisor to the World Council of Churches. Melba Padilla Maggay is a writer and a social anthropologist. She is a specialist in intercultural communication and consultant on culture and social development issues, particularly the interface of religion, culture, and development. She is president of the Institute for Studies in Asian Church and Culture, a research and training organization engaged in development missiology and cross-cultural studies aimed at social transformation.
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