Imprints and Legacy | Justin Skeesuck and Patrick Gray


Justin Skeesuck and Patrick Gray are life-long friends. It is not unusual that friends would share an adventure of hiking the 500 mile el Camino de Santiago trail in France and Northern Spain. What is unusual is that Justin completed the trail in a wheelchair. Life has changed for them. A movie and two books later, Patrick and Justin continue to tell the stories that changed them and talk to us about spirit, our individual legacies and the impact we have on others on the trail of life or work.

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The Intersection of Mission and Leadership | Chris Lowney

Chris Lowney seems to live at the intersection of between mission, leadership, culture and spirit. He’s the author of 6 books on leadership, mission and culture. He is the vice chair of the board of CommonSpirit Health, one of America’s largest nonprofit, faith based, health systems. He has served both within the Jesuit order and later in his life as a Managing Director of J.P. Morgan & Co on three continents. His efforts in philanthropy and social entrepreneurship include helping to launch online university education in refugee camps in Africa and elsewhere;  co-founding Contemplative Leaders in Action, an emerging leader formation program now active in a half-dozen cities; and also founding  Pilgrimage for Our Children’s Future, which supports education and healthcare projects among severely impoverished, marginalized communities. That certainly a diversity of experience and we are very pleased to be in conversation with Chris Lowney, in this episode.

Kinship – Separation is an Illusion | Fr. Greg Boyle

Gregory Boyle is the founder of Homeboy Industries, the largest gang-intervention, rehabilitation, and re-entry program in the world. Father Greg, an American Roman Catholic priest of the Jesuit order, witnessed the devastating impact of gang violence on his Los Angeles community during the so-called “decade of death” that began in the late 1980s and peaked at 1,000 gang-related killings in 1992.  In 1986, Fr. Boyle was appointed pastor of Dolores Mission Church, a Jesuit parish in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of East Los Angeles that was then the poorest Catholic church in the city. At the time, the church sat between two large public housing projects and amid the territories of numerous gangs. He is also the author of the 2010 New York Times-bestseller Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion and the 2017 Los Angeles Times-bestseller Barking to the Choir: The Power of Radical Kinship. Fr. Boyle has received the California Peace Prize and been inducted into the California Hall of Fame. In 2014, the White House named him a Champion of Change. We are so pleased to be in conversation with Greg Boyle in this episode.

Becoming Mindful and Compassionate | Joyce Rupp

Joyce Rupp has been called “one of the best Christian spiritual guides writing today”. She is a Catholic sister, a member of the Servite Order and is well known internationally for her work as a spiritual mentor, spiritual guide, retreat leader and conference speaker. She is also the author of numerous best selling and award winning books on spirituality. She is co-Director of the Institute of Compassionate Presence and we are pleased to be in conversation with her today.

The Spirit of a Social Entrepreneur | C. Paul Schroeder

This episode of the Mission Innovation Podcast is in conversation with Paul Schroeder, who is a social entrepreneur, award-winning author, teacher, former Greek Orthodox priest and a coach. He has led diverse purpose driven organizations over the past 20 years with two recent examples being the New City Initiative in Oregon focused on issues of homelessness and employment as well as HourCar, a non-profit car sharing company focused on environmentally sustainable transportation in Minnesota. His book titled: “Practice Makes Purpose: Six Spiritual Practices that will Change Your Life and Transform Your Community.” offers a simple method for compassionate living.

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Sr. Eileen McNerney | Walking Between Two Worlds

Sr. Eileen McNerney, a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange, founded Taller San Jose Hope Builders in 1995. But this story really begins in 1992, when she invited three other nuns to move with her to a gang-ridden neighborhood in Santa Ana, California, where gun shots and drug sales at that time were commonplace. One hot summer evening, Sister Eileen listened helplessly as a piercing cry rang through the open windows of her busy street; it was the agonizing wail of a mother who had just lost her second son to gang violence.

This moment marked a turning point for Sister Eileen in her resolve to develop a program that could move young people from violence to productivity. By bringing together sponsors representing local government, churches, corporations, foundations, and private individuals, Sister Eileen opened an educational and job-training center in downtown Santa Ana for high-risk youth ages 18 – 28. She named the center Taller San Jose Hope Builders.

Today it is an enterprise with revenues around 5 million and a staff of around 30. A recipient of many local and international awards, Sr Eileen and Taller San Jose identified poverty itself as the biggest barrier to advancement and acquired great expertise in creating programs that specifically address those barriers.

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Azim Khamisa and Ples Felix | Forgiveness and Collaboration

In January of 1995, Ples Felix’s 14-year-old grandson murdered Azim Khamisa’s son in a gang initiation. But the story does not end there. From this tragic murder emerges a story of understanding, reconciliation and the beginning of the Tariq Khamisa Foundation which is devoted to stopping teen violence. Listen to the latest episode of The Mission Innovation Podcast where we interview Ples and Azim.

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Richard Rohr | Being Grounded at Work

Richard Rohr is a globally recognized ecumenical teacher who comes from the tradition of Christian mysticism. He has been called “one of the most popular spirituality authors and speakers in the world.

Fr Rohr is a Franciscan priest and founder of the Center for Action and Contemplation (CAC) in Albuquerque, New Mexico. An author of over 30 books on spirituality, he joins us in conversation on the spiritual path of being fully grounded and authentic at work.

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Dr. John Izzo | Nurturing Purpose and Meaning at Work

Elizabeth McLeod, a millennial and cum laude graduate of Boston University, is the author of a letter that went viral on LinkedIn. She wrote the letter on behalf of millennials everywhere to “Management” everywhere. The letter was about the need for meaning at work. At the end of the letter, Elizabeth stated this, “I was raised to believe I could change the world. I’m desperate for you to show me that the work we do here matters, even just a little bit. I’ll make copies, I’ll fetch coffee, I’ll do the grunt work. But I’m not doing it to help you get a new Mercedes. I’ll give you everything I’ve got, but I need to know it makes a difference to something bigger than your bottom line.

We are pleased to be joined by Dr. John Izzo, a leading business leadership expert, community leader and author – beginning with his book in Awakening Corporate Soul (1994) to more recently, The Purpose Revolution (2018). John has been an advisor with such companies as IBM, McDonalds, HP, Verizon, and Coca Cola as well as being a teacher, researcher and coach on leadership and workplace values. He joins us today on the Mission Innovation podcast in conversation, on meaning at work.

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Collaborative Innovation | A Community Builds a Replicable Response to the Opioid Epidemic

The National Institute on Drug Abuse has noted that every day in the United States, 115 people die after overdosing on opioids. The drugs we are speaking about are prescription pain relievers, heroin and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl. It’s clear that this is a national crisis affecting the public health of our communities as well as their social and economic welfare. In this episode you will hear the story of an innovative, award winning, community collaborative with St Gabriel’s Hospital in Little Falls, Minnesota, that is successfully responding in that community to their opioid crisis. This replicable program is spreading not only with in the state of Minnesota but nationally. This story will be told by members of the community, some of whom participate in the community collaborative response called the Morrison County Prescription Drug Abuse Task Force.

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