Monthly Archives: December 2021

Arun Gandhi Interview Peacebuilding 6 PGE 56

Mohandas (know by the honorific, ‘Mahatma,’ meaning ‘great-souled’) Gandhi is one of humanity’s great figures in making the world better. His lifestyle and teachings of nonviolence and his leadership in non-violent resistance has brought great change, especially in India. Many have followed Gandhi’s methods–The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in the United States being a significant example–so that his influence is global.

What is not as well know is that Gandhi’s children and their families and his grandchildren and their families have continued his work and carried it forward. One of those grandchildren is my guest for this episode, Arun Gandhi. Arun, as he prefers to be called, is the fifth grandson of Mahatma Gandhi through his second son Manilal.

There are two things for me that seem to characterize Arun’s life. The first is drawn from a story Arun tells about advice he learned from his mother, Sushila. In helping to teach her children how to deal with being a close relative of Gandhi and his legacy, Arun’s mother advised all of her children by saying, “There are two ways of dealing with it. You can either choose to be overwhelmed and live in Grandfather’s shadow, or you can use the glow of his light to illuminate your path (Legacy of Love, p.11).” Arun has allowed the glow of his grandfather’s light to illuminate his path.

The second thing is drawn from Gandhi’s often expressed conviction to be the change one wishes to see in the world. In living out this teaching, among the many things Arun and his wife, Sunanda, have done, they rescued over 125 orphan children from the streets and placed them in loving homes around the world and began a Center for Social Change, which transformed the lives of millions in villages in the western state of Maharashtra. Together, Arun and Sunanda started projects for the social and economic uplifting of the oppressed using constructive programs, the backbone of Gandhi’s philosophy of nonviolence.The programs changed the lives of more than half a million people in over 300 villages and they still continue to grow. In 1987 Sunanda and Arun came to the US and in 1991 they started the M. K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence. In the time Arun was associated with the Institute, he took the message of nonviolence and peace to hundreds of thousands of high school and University youth around the US and much of the Western World. After his wife died in 2007, Arun founded the Gandhi Worldwide Education Institute in 2008, headquartered in a suburb outside of Chicago, ILL. The Institute was founded to promote community building in economically depressed areas of the world through the joining of Gandhian philosophy and vocational education for children and their parents. In November 2013, Arun was elected to the Board of Trustees of the Council for a Parliament of the World Religions.

Arun has written numerous books. Among them are Legacy of Love: My Education in the Path of NonviolenceThe Gift of Anger: And Other Lessons from My Grandfather Mahatma Gandhi, Kasturba: A Life, and two children’s books, Grandfather Gandhi, and Be the Change: A Grandfather Gandhi Story

The music for this episode is from a clip of a song called ‘Father Let Your Kingdom Come’ which is found on The Porter’s Gate Worship Project Work Songs album and is used by permission by The Porter’s Gate Worship Project. You can learn more about the album and the Worship Project at


Novelist Jeanine Joyner PGE 55

My guest for this episode is novelist Jeanine Joyner. If you have been listening to podcast, you may remember Jeanine from my interview with the folks of Foundling House in episode 33.

Christians who are artists understand the relationship between their art and their faith in different ways and perceive the purpose of their art in different ways. Exploring this relationship between a particular Christian’s art and that Christian’s faith is a significant part of my interest in interviewing the Christians who are artists that I do.

Jeanine’s novel is Paper Dolls: Trust Your Instincts. I chose Jeanine’s book not just as a specific example of how Jeanine understands the relationship between her faith and her art, but also because of the subject matter of the book. To talk about that subject matter requires a fundamental spoiler, but Jeanine is more concerned about discussing the topic than preventing spoiler.

Paper Dolls is about the sexual trafficing and prostituting of children. It is an open and hard look at a terrible reality. Consequently, as different art forms have always done, Paper Dolls is a means of raising awareness and providing options and incentive for action. Thanks to Theodore Roosevelt’s reading of Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle, the food we eat is safe and more healthy, due to government oversight and protection. Art can create change. Hopefully your reading of Jeanine’s Paper Dolls will do just that!

Jeanine is a native Texan transplanted into Middle Tennessee. A mother of five, she somehow carved out the time to write her debut novel Paper Dolls: Trust Your Instincts between homeschooling and hosting house concerts. She now lives in a home surrounded by rolling hills and farmlands, appropriately named Arundelle Green, after a character who captured her imagination in the Andrew Peterson book, The Warden and the Wolf King. You can learn more about Jeanine at

The music for this episode is from a clip of a song called ‘Father Let Your Kingdom Come’ which is found on The Porter’s Gate Worship Project Work Songs album and is used by permission by The Porter’s Gate Worship Project. You can learn more about the album and the Worship Project at