National Catholic Reporter

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Unformed future

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24th in a series

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- When Shane Claiborne hops to the podium in the meeting room at the Hotel Albuquerque, he looks as stylistically unbounded as his spiritual quest that’s outlined on a bio sheet. He’s long and lanky with a goatee. He looks bookish in dark-rimmed glasses, his thin face framed by dreadlocks held in place by a handkerchief bandana. He projects a kind of urban underbelly chic with an accent as pure as the early days of NASCAR.

He is a product of East Tennessee Protestant evangelical Christianity transplanted to the Northeast, where he engages in a robust version of Catholic Worker-type community, advocating for the poor and for nonviolent solutions to problems.

Franciscan Fr. Richard Rohr speaks of him as a gifted “third-way person.” In the context of the conference on emerging Christianity he is about to address, he serves as a bridge, and a personification of one version of what might be arising out of what is.

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