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Repaso: Sierra Leone in photos; Jake Belder on forgotten places; Living Room Songs; Q&A from The Justice Conference; UMC repents; Twitter does it again

1. Sierra Leone ten years after the war
Earlier this week I submitted a writing project focused on Fambul Tok, a home-grown peace and reconciliation initiative taking place around bonfires across Sierra Leone. It’s worth knowing about. As I finished my writing, former Liberian president Charles Taylor was convicted of war crimes in Sierra Leone, a full decade after the war ended. And The Big Picture posted this photo essay with a look at what the country looks like in 2012.

2. Jake Belder on forgotten places
Jake Belder, an assistant minister in Hull, England (and by Twitter appearances, an all-around good guy) has a great feature essay in Comment:

One of the delights of living in England is venturing off the main roads into the little villages that dot the countryside. At the heart of many of these picturesque villages is a small church that has stood for hundreds of years, a reminder the role churches used to play in holding these communities together. Whenever I get the chance, I wander into these churches. I love the musty smell of the old stonework, the silence, and the sense of being in a place altogether different from the world outside. And when I sit in one of the old pews, I think about those who have sat in them over the last five hundred years. Who shepherded them as they lived their lives in this place? How were they equipped to live faithfully in this context?

3. Living Room Songs by Ólafur Arnalds
Joy Williams of The Civil Wars tweeted this last weekend: “Having my heart broken & mended again by Icelandic composer Ólafur Arnalds’ Living Room Songs EP.” I think you’ll agree, as I do, that these songs are hauntingly beautiful, not unlike the music of fellow Icelandic band Sigur Rós.

4. Q&A videos from The Justice Conference
For those who weren’t able to attend The Justice Conference in Portland in February (and for those who were there too, I suppose), videos from a bunch of Q&A sessions have been posted at Lots of great stuff.

5. UMC apologizes to Native Americans
Thanks to Brittany Bennett for sharing the link to this video from the United Methodist Church’s General Conference, where the denomination initiated an act of repentance to begin the process of healing relationships with Native Americans. It’s encouraging to see a group of Christians taking this so seriously.

6. Yet another reason to love Twitter
Katie and I have a really good reason to love Twitter; ask us about it sometime. Another reason to love Twitter is when you’re a cancer survivor who loves baseball and you get to play catch with a pitcher from your team just because you replied to this within two minutes.

Repaso is intended as a thought-provoking compilation of news and commentary from the past week related to the intersections of faith, development, justice and peace. As always, I welcome your thoughts on any of the links and ideas in this roundup!

[Photo credit: Finbarr O’Reilly/Reuters via The Big Picture]