HDI Launches The Better Samaritan Blog & Podcast at Christianity Today

January 14, 2021

The Humanitarian Disaster Institute at Wheaton College launched The Better Samaritan, a new blog and podcast hosted by Christianity Today. 

380x253 Jamie Aten portraitThe Humanitarian Disaster Institute (HDI) at Wheaton College recently launched The Better Samaritan, a new blog and podcast hosted at Christianity Today.

On The Better Samaritan blog and podcast, HDI co-directors Kent Annan and Dr. Jamie Aten invite readers and listeners to journey with them as they explore how Christians can better love their neighbors by using their hearts and smarts. 

“Having worked in disaster and humanitarian crises around the globe, we’ve seen many well-intentioned good Samaritans come forward to help others, unfortunately, not all good Samaritans are helpful,” wrote Aten and Annan, in their welcome post.

Kent Annan head shotDrawing on lessons they’ve learned from helping others as practitioners and researchers, Annan and Aten seek to equip Christians with practical ways to help others from everyday acts of kindness to complex humanitarian issues. Topics to be covered include disaster recovery, poverty, refugee assistance and resettlement, human trafficking, public health, racial reconciliation, and others. They’ll also take on practical questions like: Is it good to give someone asking for money on the sidewalk? What is the best way to give and help after a disaster?

The blog will feature voices from the HDI team as well as guest contributors actively engaged in the work of learning to do good, better. In each podcast episode, Aten and Annan will interview an expert with insight on learning to do good, better. Guests in the first season will include Michael Wear (Former director of faith outreach for President Obama's 2012 re-election campaign & co-author of Compassion and Conviction: The AND Campaign’s Guide to Faithful Civic Engagement), Nikki Toyama-Szeto (Christians for Social Action), Nicolette Louissaint (Healthcare Ready), Anu George Canjanathoppil (International Justice Mission Canada), and more.

The Better Samaritan name draws on wisdom from a sermon written by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the parable of the Good Samaritan, in which he wrote: “It is not enough to aid the wounded man on the Jericho Road. It is also necessary to work to change the conditions of the Road which made robbery possible.” In this spirit, both the blog and podcast will seek to explore ways we can help the hurting person right in front of us while also looking at the conditions that put them at risk in the first place.

Find The Better Samaritan at christianitytoday.com/better-samaritan, and the podcast is available at Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, TuneIn, or wherever you find podcasts.

About Humanitarian Disaster Institute at Wheaton College

The Humanitarian Disaster Institute is the first faith-based academic disaster research center in the country. Our mission is to help the church prepare and care for a disaster-filled world. We use our research to create resources and events geared toward students, survivors, helpers, and researchers. Housed at Wheaton College Graduate School, the institute also offers an M.A. in Humanitarian & Disaster Leadership and Trauma Certificate to equip the next generation of humanitarians. Learn more at wheaton.edu/HDI.

Media contact:

Genelle Aldred