Tattoos on the Heart

Author: Greg Boyle
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781439153154
Release Date: 2011-02-08
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

Father Boyle started Homeboy Industries nearly 20 years ago, which has served members of more than half of the gangs in Los Angeles. This collection presents parables about kinship and the sacredness of life drawn from Boyle's years of working with gangs.

Tattoos on the Heart

Author: Gregory Boyle
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781439171776
Release Date: 2010-03-09
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

“Destined to become a classic of both urban reportage and contemporary spirituality” ( Los Angeles Times )—Tattoos on the Heart is a series of parables about kinship and redemption from pastor, activist, and renowned speaker, Father Gregory Boyle. For twenty years, Father Gregory Boyle has run Homeboy Industries, a gang-intervention program located in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles—also known as the gang capital of the world. In Tattoos on the Heart, he has distilled his experience working in the ghetto into a breathtaking series of parables inspired by faith. From giant, tattooed Cesar, shopping at JC Penney fresh out of prison, you learn how to feel worthy of God’s love. From ten-year-old Pipi you learn the importance of being known and acknowledged. From Lulu you come to understand the kind of patience necessary to rescue someone from the dark—as Father Boyle phrases it, we can only shine a flashlight on a light switch in a darkened room. This is a motivating look at how to stay faithful in spite of failure, how to meet the world with a loving heart, and how to conquer shame with boundless, restorative love.

Tattoos on the Heart

Author: Gregory Boyle
Publisher: Free Press
ISBN: 1439153027
Release Date: 2010-03-09
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

Father Gregory Boyle’s sparkling parables about kinship and the sacredness of life are drawn from twenty years working with gangs in LA. How do you fight despair and learn to meet the world with a loving heart? How do you overcome shame? Stay faithful in spite of failure? No matter where people live or what their circumstances may be, everyone needs boundless, restorative love. Gorgeous and uplifting, Tattoos on the Heart amply demonstrates the impact unconditional love can have on your life. As a pastor working in a neighborhood with the highest concentration of murderous gang activity in Los Angeles, Gregory Boyle created an organization to provide jobs, job training, and encouragement so that young people could work together and learn the mutual respect that comes from collaboration. Tattoos on the Heart is a breathtaking series of parables distilled from his twenty years in the barrio. Arranged by theme and filled with sparkling humor and glowing generosity, these essays offer a stirring look at how full our lives could be if we could find the joy in loving others and in being loved unconditionally. From giant, tattooed Cesar, shopping at JCPenney fresh out of prison, we learn how to feel worthy of God’s love. From ten-year-old Lula we learn the importance of being known and acknowledged. From Pedro we understand the kind of patience necessary to rescue someone from the darkness. In each chapter we benefit from Boyle’s wonderful, hard-earned wisdom. Inspired by faith but applicable to anyone trying to be good, these personal, unflinching stories are full of surprising revelations and observations of the community in which Boyle works and of the many lives he has helped save. Erudite, down-to-earth, and utterly heartening, these essays about universal kinship and redemption are moving examples of the power of unconditional love in difficult times and the importance of fighting despair. With Gregory Boyle’s guidance, we can recognize our own wounds in the broken lives and daunting struggles of the men and women in these parables and learn to find joy in all of the people around us. Tattoos on the Heart reminds us that no life is less valuable than another.

Barking to the Choir

Author: Gregory Boyle
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781476726175
Release Date: 2017-11-14
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

“This is a beautiful and important and soul-transporting book. . . . Please read it.” —Elizabeth Gilbert “If you’re in the market for genuine inspiration, I urge you to read Barking to the Choir.” —Ann Patchett In a moving example of unconditional love in dif­ficult times, the Jesuit priest and bestselling author of Tattoos on the Heart, Gregory Boyle, shares what three decades of working with gang members in Los Angeles has taught him about faith, compassion, and the enduring power of kinship. In his first book, Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion, Gregory Boyle introduced us to Homeboy Industries, the largest gang-intervention program in the world. Critics hailed that book as an “astounding literary and spiritual feat” (Publishers Weekly) that is “destined to become a classic of both urban reportage and contemporary spirituality” (Los Angeles Times). Now, after the suc­cessful expansion of Homeboy Industries, Boyle returns with Barking to the Choir to reveal how com­passion is transforming the lives of gang members. In a nation deeply divided and plagued by poverty and violence, Barking to the Choir offers a snapshot into the challenges and joys of life on the margins. Sergio, arrested at nine, in a gang by twelve, and serving time shortly thereafter, now works with the substance-abuse team at Homeboy to help others find sobriety. Jamal, abandoned by his family when he tried to attend school at age seven, gradually finds forgive­ness for his schizophrenic mother. New father Cuco, who never knew his own dad, thinks of a daily adventure on which to take his four-year-old son. These former gang members uplift the soul and reveal how bright life can be when filled with unconditional love and kindness. This book is guaranteed to shake up our ideas about God and about people with a glimpse at a world defined by more compassion and fewer barriers. Gently and humorously, Barking to the Choir invites us to find kinship with one another and reconvinces us all of our own goodness.

G dog and the Homeboys

Author: Celeste Fremon
Publisher: UNM Press
ISBN: 0826344852
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

This is an updated edition of the story of the gang scene in East L.A. and Father Gregory Boyle's innovative ministry and economic development efforts in the area.

Tatuajes en el corazon

Author: Gregory Boyle
Publisher: Free Press
ISBN: 1439160988
Release Date: 2010-03-09
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

¿Cómo luchar contra la desesperanza e interactuar con el mundo con un corazón bondadoso? ¿Cómo superar la vergüenza y tener fe a pesar del fracaso? Sin importar en dónde vivamos o cuáles sean nuestras circunstancias, todos necesitamos un amor ilimitado y restaurador. Magnífico y reconfortante, Tatuajes en el corazón demuestra ampliamente el impacto que puede tener el amor incondicional en nuestras vidas. En su condición de párroco que trabaja en el vecindario con la mayor concentración de actividad pandillera y criminal en Los Ángeles, Gregory Boyle ha creado una organización para ofrecer empleos, capacitación laboral y estímulos para que los jóvenes puedan trabajar juntos y aprender el respeto mutuo proveniente de la colaboración. Tatuajes en el corazón es una impresionante serie de parábolas producto de sus experiencias con personas del barrio durante las dos últimas décadas. Clasificados por temas y llenos de humor fresco y generosidad abundante, estos ensayos nos ofrecen una visión conmovedora sobre la forma tan plena en que podemos vivir nuestras vidas si encontramos la alegría en amar a los demás y en ser amados incondicionalmente. De César, el joven enorme y lleno de tatuajes haciendo compras en JCPenney recién salido de la prisión, aprendemos a sentirnos dignos del amor de Dios. De Lula, el chico de diez años, aprendemos la importancia de ser conocidos y aceptados. De Pedro, entendemos el tipo de paciencia necesaria para rescatar a alguien de la oscuridad. En cada capítulo recibimos el regalo de la sabiduría maravillosa y duramente lograda por Boyle. Estos ensayos eruditos, realistas y completamente alentadores que discurren sobre la hermandad y la redención, son ejemplos reconfortantes del poder que tiene el amor incondicional en los tiempos difíciles y de la importancia absoluta de luchar contra la desesperanza. Gracias a la orientación de Gregory Boyle, podemos reconocer nuestras propias heridas en las vidas fracturadas y en las luchas descomunales de los hombres y las mujeres que figuran en estas parábolas, para aprender a encontrar la alegría en todas las personas que hay a nuestro alrededor. Tatuajes en el corazón nos hace recordar que ninguna vida vale menos que otra.

Jesus Before Christianity

Author: Albert Nolan
Publisher: Orbis Books
ISBN: 9781570754043
Release Date: 2001
Genre: Religion

Nolan's portrait introduces readers to Jesus as He was before He became enshrined in doctrine, dogma, and ritual, a man deeply involved with the real problems of His time, which are the real problems of our time as well. In a new preface, Nolan reflects on recent work in Christology and how a book written in South Africa in 1976 still has a message for people today.

Christian Social Innovation

Author: L. Gregory Jones
Publisher: Abingdon Press
ISBN: 9781501825781
Release Date: 2016-05-17
Genre: Religion

Everybody seems interested in innovation and entrepreneurship these days. Start-ups are generating new jobs, creating wealth and providing solutions to longstanding problems. People are also aware that old-line social institutions need innovative approaches that provide renewal, re-establish trust and cultivate sustainability. What do faith communities have to do with innovation and entrepreneurship? Faith communities have their own need for innovation, demonstrated in a growing interest in starting new churches, developing “fresh expressions” for gatherings of community and discussions about how to cultivate a renewed sense of mission. But do faith communities have anything unique to contribute to conversations about innovation and entrepreneurship, especially in “social entrepreneurship”? At first glance, the answer seems to be “no.” Burgeoning literature on social entrepreneurship barely mentions the church or other faith-based institutions — and when it does they’re often described as part of the broken institutional landscape. Recently much of the most innovative and entrepreneurial work in these sectors has been done apart from faith communities, whether through secular non-governmental organizations (e.g., Teach for America, Knowledge is Power Program schools) or for-profit businesses (e.g., hospitals and hospices). Indeed, it is now often assumed that faith and faith communities either are irrelevant to social innovation and entrepreneurship or are a significant obstacle. We believe too many people in faith communities, and faith-based organizations themselves, turned inward. They became preoccupied with managing what already existed rather than focusing on innovative renewal of their organizations and entrepreneurial approaches to starting new ones. However, Christian social innovation, at its best, depends on a conception of hope different than the optimism that often characterizes secular endeavors, a hope that acknowledges personal and social brokenness. Further, faith communities, at their best, have embodied perseverance, often bringing people together across generations and diverse sectors to imagine how common effort and faith might overcome obstacles. Although some faith communities have lost the “at-their-best” focus, new conversations and experiments are emerging beyond the goal of starting new congregations. But they tend to be “and” conversations: faith and innovation, faith and entrepreneurship, faith and leadership. We don’t think this goes deep enough. Faith might truly “animate” social innovation and entrepreneurship. In this perspective, faith is not held at a distance from the activities of life but is instead its vital force, providing the imagination, passion and commitment that lead to transformation.

One Hope

Author: Julie K. Aageson
Publisher: Augsburg Fortress Publishers
ISBN: 9781451496529
Release Date: 2015-01-01
Genre: Religion

Series of essays co-authored by three Lutherans and three Catholics, on the theme of Christian unity, in anticipation of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Includes discussion questions.

Skin Deep

Author: Steven Burton
Publisher: powerHouse Books
ISBN: 157687849X
Release Date: 2017-09-19
Genre: Art

For decades now tattoos have been potent symbols of the Los Angeles gang-life scene. The black and white tattoos with recognizable gang symbols appear on members' faces, necks and all over their bodies, making their gang affiliation immediately clear to whomever crosses their path. This can mean the difference between life and death on he streets, and just as often, in prison. What does this prominently placed imagery mean for those men and women who somehow extricate themselves from gang life or are released from prison or want to separate themselves from the gang and start life anew? The very tattoos which may have helped guard against the constant threat of rival gangs now bar many ex-gang members from employment, life without harassment, and the freedom to move on from a past they have worked hard to overcome. Skin Deep is a photography project that seeks to show the effects of this ongoing gang conflict in Los Angeles. Photographer Steven Burton set out to photograph realistic portraits of former gang members who are trying to escape the revolving door of death and prison. For these men and women, the aftermath of gang life is not only carried within--it is also scrawled across their faces and bodies. Skin Deep uniquely highlights the impact tattoos have on the way a person is perceived by showing what each participant might look like without them. Utilizing before and, thanks to the advantages of Photoshop, after photographs, these men and women got a chance to see what they'd look like without the inked visual armor. After the bare images were presented to each, they were asked to talk about themselves and their families, what tattoos represent to them, and their aspirations for the future. Seeing themselves without tattoos--many for the first time in decades--naturally brought about a wide range of emotions, recollections, hopes, and dreams, with responses such as: "I am shocked. I don't know what to say about this. I am going to give this to my mom, she is going to be so happy." "I think this guy in the pictures would judge the one with tattoos right off the top." "That's crazy, that looks real crazy. Those came out cool man! I think I like it better without the tattoos." Burton met his subjects thanks to Father Greg Boyle, the founder of Homeboy Industries in LA, and the entire project is inspired by his tireless work to help rehabilitate these former gang members and give them all a crucial second chance in life. Skin Deep offers a chance to expose the realities these individuals face when trying to rebuild their lives and re-enter society. As importantly, for the public, the project provokes consideration regarding how society perceives and judges people with tattoos and violent pasts and seeks to garner empathy for those caught in the crosshairs of gang life as they try to change their futures.

For the Love of Money

Author: Sam Polk
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781476786001
Release Date: 2016-07-19
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

“Part coming-of-age story, part recovery memoir, and part exposé of a rotten, money-drenched Wall Street culture” (Salon), Sam Polk’s unflinching account chronicles his fight to overcome the ghosts of his past—and the radical new way he now defines success. At just thirty years old, Sam Polk was a senior trader for one of the biggest hedge funds on Wall Street, on the verge of making it to the very top. When he was offered an annual bonus of $3.75 million, he grew angry because it was not enough. It was then he knew he had lost himself in his obsessive pursuit of money. And he had come to loathe the culture—the shallowness, the sexism, the crude machismo—and Wall Street’s use of wealth as the sole measure of a person’s worth. He decided to walk away from it all. For Polk, becoming a Wall Street trader was the fulfillment of his dreams. But in reality it was just the culmination of a life of addictive and self-destructive behaviors, from overeating, to bulimia, to alcohol and drug abuse. His obsessive pursuit of money papered over years of insecurity and emotional abuse. Making money was just the latest attempt to fill the void left by his narcissistic and emotionally unavailable father. “Vivid, picaresque...riveting” (, For the Love of Money brings you into the rarefied world of Wall Street trading floors, capturing the modern frustrations of young graduates drawn to Wall Street. Polk’s “raw, honest and intimate take on one man’s journey in and out of the business…really gives readers something to think about” ( It is “compellingly written...unflinchingly honest...about the inner journey Polk undertakes to redefine success” (Forbes).

Sheep Can t Fly

Author: Students of Garfield High School
Publisher: 826 Books
ISBN: 1934750123
Release Date: 2009-10-01
Genre: Juvenile Fiction

Presents a collection of poems, short stories, and essays focused on heroism and hope written by students from Garfield High School in East Los Angeles.

Falling Free

Author: Shannan Martin
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
ISBN: 9780718077471
Release Date: 2016-09-20
Genre: Religion

“Shannan’s story feels at once familiar and spectacular, ordinary and exceptional. You will discover that at the same time her words make you squirm, you will wish you lived next door to her. You will want her wisdom and you will want her pickles.” —Jen Hatmaker (from the foreword) Shannan Martin had the perfect life: a cute farmhouse on six rambling acres, a loving husband, three adorable kids, money, friends, a close-knit church—a safe, happy existence. But when the bottom dropped out through a series of shocking changes and ordinary inconveniences, the Martins followed God’s call to something radically different: a small house on the other side of the urban tracks, a shoestring income, a challenged public school, and the harshness of a county jail (where her husband is now chaplain). And yet the family’s plunge from “safety” was the best thing that could have happened to them. Falling Free charts their pilgrimage from the self-focused wisdom of the world to the topsy-turvy life of God’s more being found in less. Martin’s practical, sweetly subversive book invites us to rethink assumptions about faith and the good life, push past insecurity and fear, and look beyond comfortable, middle-class Christianity toward a deeper, richer, and ultimately more fulfilling life.

Grandad s Prayers of the Earth

Author: Douglas Wood
Publisher: Candlewick Press
ISBN: 9780763606602
Release Date: 1999
Genre: Juvenile Fiction

Because Grandad has explained how all things in the natural world pray and make a gift to the beauty of life, his grandson is comforted when Grandad dies.