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Acton Notes - September 2008

William F. Buckley to be Honored at Annual Dinner

The Acton Institute is honored to pay tribute to one of the greatest and most well known conservative leaders, the late William F. Buckley, Jr., at this year's annual dinner. Kate O'Beirne, National Review's Washington editor, will accept the award on Buckley's behalf. Buckley, who passed away in February, was also a valuable supporter and friend of the Acton Institute. Buckley spoke at the first ever Acton Annual Dinner. Rev. Robert Sirico said of Buckley, "He was a man of faith and a man who understood his faith. He was a man who believed in liberty and organized one of the most significant magazines that made the case for human liberty and the conservative cause." Rev. Sirico also noted, "One of the secrets I learned from Bill Buckley in building a movement for human freedom was to be encouraging of other efforts pulling in the same general direction."

The keynote speaker at the annual dinner this year is Rev. John Nunes. Nunes is the president and CEO of Lutheran World Relief--an organization that acts to end poverty and injustice by empowering the world's most impoverished communities to bring about the transformation needed to live healthy, safe, and secure lives. Combining 63 years of experience, an uncompromising pursuit of excellence, faith, and prayer; LWR works with partners in 35 countries to promote sustainable development and human flourishing. Rev. Nunes has served in many offices of ministry, and has also served with the Acton Institute as a research fellow.

The dinner, which takes place on October 30, will be located at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Please visit the Acton website or call the Grand Rapids office for more information and to make plans to be present for this memorable evening.

An Evening with Laura Ingraham

Laura Ingraham, the popular talk radio host, will be in Grand Rapids for an event sponsored by the Acton Institute on September 17. The event will take place at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel and feature remarks by Ingraham, a question and answer session, a book signing, and a desert reception. Ingraham's newest book is a New York Times Best Seller titled Power to the People.

Ingraham is the most popular female talk show host in the nation, and produces the fifth largest syndicated radio program. Before her career in radio, Ingraham worked as a speech writer for the Reagan administration, and clerked for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas after graduating from the University of Virginia Law School. Ingraham is well known as the official guest host of The O'Reilly Factor, which airs on the Fox News Channel. Tickets for the event are $25 and $15 for students. You can purchase tickets online at the Acton Institute website.

Acton Staff Volunteers

The staff at the Acton Institute has volunteered by lending their time and talents to those in need in the community of Grand Rapids. Acton has learned a lot from local charities since consistently serving alongside local groups once a month from October 2007. Development Coordinator Mandalyn J. Keeler says, "Volunteering is a great way for Acton to be involved and minister to our local community. We started volunteering almost a year ago and our staff members really enjoy doing it. It gives us a chance to share what the Acton Institute is all about and serves as an opportunity for staff members to network in a fun and effective way."

The Acton Institute has volunteered with Guiding Light Missions, Ronald McDonald House, Gilda's Club, the Grand Rapids Children's Museum, and the Alzheimer's Association.

Acton Partners with World Magazine

The Acton Institute is partnering with World Magazine by offering a free two-month subscription for readers of Acton Notes. World Magazine publishes feature stories about the Samaritan Award finalists each year. World is a full color biweekly news magazine that provides complete coverage of national and international news from a Christian perspective. The editor-in-chief of World Magazine is Dr. Marvin Olasky, who is also a senior fellow at the Acton Institute. World currently has a circulation of just over 123,000 per month. This inspiring publication is recommended reading because of its relevant, serious, and very entertaining news coverage.

This offer is for interested Acton Notes readers who do not currently have a subscription to World Magazine.

2008 Samaritan Award Winner Announced

The Acton Institute has named the Samaritan Award winner for the top outstanding privately funded charitable organization. This year's first-prize winner is Citizens for Community Values, A Way Out Program, based in Memphis, Tennessee. The winner of the Samaritan Award receives a $10,000 prize. The winner is considered the best example of Dr. Marvin Olasky's principles of effective compassion.

The article detailing the Samaritan Award winning charity in World Magazine says, "Since 1992 A Way Out has been rescuing women from Memphis' prostitution, stripping, and drug culture. The independent outpatient program, added this year, consists of 15 classes (which the women attend four days a week) dealing with problems such as sexual addiction, depression, and boundaries." According to the director of the charity, only seven out of two hundred forty eight women have returned to the sex industry after completing the program. The winning charity has a very strong biblical foundation built into its programs. Citizens for Community Values has also been a consistent top ten finisher within the charities the Samaritan Award ranks. Runner-up prizes for 2008 were awarded to Fresno Rescue Mission Academy in Fresno, California, and Restoration Ministries in Harvey, Illinois. Each of these charities received a prize of $1,000.

For more information on the Samaritan Award visit www.samaritanguide.com. While visiting the Samaritan guide, you can study and read about how charities in your own geographic location rate. All of the Samaritan Award finalists appear in the August 23 issue of World.

Acton and You

Dr. Samuel Gregg, Acton's research director, will deliver an address titled "What's Wrong With Our Economy?," on September 18 at the Acton Lecture Series in Grand Rapids. In this lecture, Dr. Gregg will discuss some of the root causes of the economy's present problems, the merits of various attempts to grapple with them, and the fundamental reforms needed for sustained economic growth. Just our current economic problems stem from moral, political, and economic errors, so too, Dr. Gregg argues, are the solutions to be found in the moral, economic, and political realm.

Mr. Michael Miller, Acton's director of programs, spoke on July 24 for the Acton Lecture Series. His address was titled "The Victory of Socialism." Miller argued that "socialism is becoming more influential in the way we think and in our cultural and religious institutions." Miller also spoke about how defenders of freedom and human dignity can counter the socialist threat. The entire lecture is available at www.acton.org.