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This week on Givers, Doers, & Thinkers, we talk to theologian Gary Anderson about the surprising things the biblical tradition has to say about the poor, charity, and charity’s rewards.

Gary Anderson is the Hesburgh Professor of Catholic Theology at the University of Notre Dame and holds a doctorate from Harvard University. He is interested in all dimensions of biblical studies. His specialization is in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, but because of his interest in the history of interpretation, he also works in Second Temple Judaism and early Christian sources. He has written several works on these topics, most notable being Sin: A History and Charity: The Place of the Poor in the Biblical Tradition, which is what we spend time discussing in this episode. 

To kick off this chat, Jeremy and Gary walk through a brief history of charity in the biblical tradition. They touch on weighty questions such as charity’s place in social reform, its “worthy” recipients, and how different faiths and denominations express it. Then they shift gears a bit to discuss the somewhat uncomfortable and confusing ways influential figures like Mother Teresa of Calcutta and Bill Gates practice charity and what that means for ordinary folks. As someone concerned about the flourishing of civil society, this episode will challenge your thinking on the best ways to understand and offer charity and how it impacts your soul.

You’ll also hear from senior consultant Mark Diggs on why he thinks direct response fundraising is like fishing from a riverbank and what that means for nonprofit leaders when communicating with donors.

You can find Givers, Doers, & Thinkers here at Philanthropy Daily, Apple PodcastsSpotifyAmazon MusicGoogle PodcastsBuzzsprout, and wherever you listen to podcasts.

We’d love to hear your thoughts, ideas, questions, and recommendations for the podcast! You can shoot Katie Janus, GDT’s producer, an email anytime!